City&FinanceBriefing London Lite Monday, 13 July 2009 35 Inbrief Friends rebuffs Cowderys bid l Clive Cowdery, the zombie fund insurance tycoon who now runs resolution, has had his bid for Friends Provident rejected. The offer -- thought to be part of Cowderys aim to buy a number of life insurers over the next 18 months and then merge them in order to cut costs -- was turned down by the board. Campers fire Pontins growth l PoNTiNS is seeking to buy up ailing rivals and expand its six-strong chain of British holiday camps. Buoyed by a record leap in bookings -- it claims stay-at-home Brits this summer have fuelled a 25% surge in campers -- Pontins chief executive ian Smith said: we are looking at opportunities to acquire businesses that fit with our core product. Oil price dives to seven-week low l The oil price plunged below $59 a barrel today amid continuing concerns about the shape of the global economy. london Brent crude was down by 60 cents at $59.92 a barrel, while New york traded crude was off by 92 cents at $58.97. The price is now at seven-week lows, extending the steep losses seen last week. Bruno is out of fashion in States l hollywood executives at Universal Pictures are fretting as weekend box-office sales for Sacha Baron Cohens movie Bruno disappointed. The hoax Austrian fashionista movie pulled in strong sales of $14.4 million (8.9 million) in the US on its opening on Friday. But in total it made $30.4 million after some expected $40 million. Australia Dollars 1.9781 Canada Dollars 1.7995 Denmark Kroner 8.2624 Eurozone Euro 1.1130 Hong Kong Dollars 11.9600 Japan Yen 143.2800 New Zealand Dollars 2.4144 South Africa Rand 12.4800 Sweden Kronor 12.2600 Switzerland Francs 1.6821 UAE Dirham 5.6018 United States Dollars 1.5522 TOuriST raTeS UP 3.59 at 4130.76 FTSe 100 dOw jOneS nikkei -$ DOWN 36.65 at 8146.52 DOWN 3.78 at 9287.38 DOWN 1.22c at $1.6090 >>For all the latest City share prices, call 0905 817 1694* or visit * Calls cost 75p/min from a BT landline & last approx 1 min per quote. not all stocks are available Cider not so rosy for C&C REINFLATING the cider boom in is proving harder than C&C Group had claimed. Today the Irish group behind Bulmers was forced to issue a correction to a trading update it released last week when it claimed sales in the first four months of the year were better than expected. It admitted: Revenue details provided within the trading statement were inaccurate. Cider sales are down 12% over the period, not the 4% earlier reported. Banks will take years to pay back taxpayers UK Financial Investments (UKFI), the quango in control of the Governments stakes in British banks, today warned that it will take years for taxpayers to get their money back. It said there was no quick fix for selling state holdings in Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), and indicated it would be a complicated and drawn out process. UKFI chief executive John Kingman said every UK household will have more than 3000 in shares in RBS and Lloyds. He pledged to maximise the value of those investments. UKFI will not interfere in the day-to-day running of the banks, but will continue to engage strongly on strategic issues which could impact value including board membership, risk management and remuneration policy, Kingman added. The taxpayer took a 43% stake in Lloyds at an average of 121p a share and a 70% stake in RBS at an average of 51p a share to save the banks from collapse last year. UKFI was set up by the Treasury to look after the stakes and sell at a profit -- with the Government hoping the process will begin before it calls a General Election. Some 70 billion of taxpayer funds have so far been ploughed into the two banks and if the stakes were to be sold at close to the 100 billion hoped for by UKFI and the Government it would dwarf any previous privatisation in Europe. 1,000Citystaffwilllose jobs to indian law firms OVER a thousand London lawyers could be redundant by the end of the year as their jobs are outsourced to India, it was claimed today. Indias largest law firm, FoxMandal Little, said the amount of legal work sent there would double this year. Soumitro Chatterjee, head of FoxMandal Littles outsourcing arm, believes there could be over 3,000 more cor- porate lawyers and admin staff in cities such as Mumbai and Delhi on the payroll of British firms by the start of 2010. Mr Chatterjee added he had met representa- tives from 10 City firms in recent weeks -- each looking to outsource up to 100 legal jobs. He said: UK law firms are interested in outsourcing document review, contract draft- ing and legal research. According to Value North, an Indian con- sultancy, there are about 10,000 people in the country -- 4,500 of whom are qualified law- yers -- doing outsourced legal work. About 1,000 lawyers are working on London-based contracts, including for the 2012 Olympics. London-based Rio Tinto Group, the mining giant, revealed last month it had hired a team of 12 lawyers in Delhi, which it said would be seven times cheaper than in London. Magic Circle firms including Allen & Overy and Clifford Chance send work to India, as do other City firms such as Eversheds, Lovells and Simmons & Simmons. Indian law graduates are paid 300 to 550 a month, rising to 1,000 for lawyers with two years experience. This compares to 2,500-4,000 a month for British law gradu- ates and 6,000 a month or more for qualified lawyers. The number of law jobs in Britain fell by 16,700 last year to 279,800. BY Bo Wilson Outsourcing: Indian legal workers offer competitive billing rates H index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html36.html37.html38.html39.html