City&FinanceBriefing All prices are prices in pounds per person based on two adults sharing a twin/double room for three nights with breakfast and include Eurostar travel. During peak dates supplements apply. Savings are based on Great Getaways 2009 price guide excluding any special offers/free nights. No amendments or cancellations permitted. All UK citizens require a valid EU passport. Credit card fee 2%. Calls to 0871 numbers cost 10 per minute from a BT landline, other networks may vary. See the website for details of our data protection policy. Offer subject to availability. Full terms and conditions apply. Great Getaways is a trading name of Acromas Holidays Ltd (ABTA W8164), company registration number 2174052. Make great savings on weekend breaks with Great Getaways. With this fantastic offer you could save up 188 per person on three night breaks to Paris or Brussels departing on Eurostar from St Pancras or Ebbsfleet International. Travel before 11 December 2009 to take advantage of this great deal. To book call 0871 222 1105 quote LIR001 or visit Hotels to choose from Prices s per person 3 nights from PARIS 2 Sovereign Bord de Seine 129 84 3 Murat 165 126 3 +La Demeure 209 146 4 Mercure Eiffel Suffren 239 136 BRUSSELS 3 Louise 145 103 3 Novotel Tour Noire 169 108 4 Holiday Inn Centre 179 166 5 Metropole 229 188 Sep-Dec* SAVE UP TO Offers are based on Friday departures and include the cheapest EurostarTMticket, subject to availabilty. *Add from 10pp for Sep-Oct arrivals. 129ppPLUS EUROSTARTM 3 NIGHTS IN PARIS 129ppPLUS EUROSTARTM 3 NIGHTS IN PARIS London Lite Friday, 25 September 2009 41 Inbrief Twitter valued at $1 billion l The Twitterverse was sent into a frenzy today by reports that Twitter is close to announcing a new round of financing worth $100 million (62 million), valuing the social-networking site at $1 billion. The cash is expected to come from private-equity firm Insight Venture Partners and giant fund manager T Rowe Price as well as current investors including Spark Capital. Ford revs up for a drive in China l FoRd today said it expects to return to the black on a full-year basis in 2011. The car giant also announced plans to expand in China by building a new factory there. It will have the potential to build 150,000 vehicles a year, taking Fords total annual capacity in China to 600,000 by 2012. Ford, posted a $2.3 billion (1.4 billion) quarterly net profit in July. london Town is feeling the pain l PubS company London Town today warned the recession is still hitting drinkers spending habits as it posted losses of 2.6 million. The firm, which owns 241 pubs across the uK, said: The current economic recession continues to impact on consumers ability to spend money. The losses for the first six months of 2009 were smaller than the deficit of 5.2 million a year ago. Grosvenor eyes lloyds scheme l LLoydS banking Group is trying get the duke of Westminsters property firm Grosvenor estates to take on repossessed commercial developments. The bank, 43% owned by the taxpayer, is holding talks with Grosvenor, which owns vast swathes of Mayfair. Royal bank of Scotland, 70% owned by the taxpayer, is in similar talks. Australia Dollars 1.7724 Canada Dollars 1.6720 Denmark Kroner 7.8480 Eurozone Euro 1.0577 Hong Kong Dollars 12.0300 Japan Yen 140.9900 New Zealand Dollars 2.1070 South Africa Rand 11.4000 Sweden Kronor 10.6800 Switzerland Francs 1.5982 UAE Dirham 5.6367 United States Dollars 1.5618 TourisT raTes UP 6.29 at 5085.56 FTse 100 dow jones nikkei -$ DOWN 41.11 at 9707.44 DOWN 278.24 at 10,265.28 DOWN 0.54 at 1.6004 >>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 Clubs hit as young lose jobs NIGHTCLUB owner Luminar today issued a grim profits warning and blamed rising unemployment among the young. The firm said customer numbers were down at its venues, stoking fears of a lost generation of jobless youngsters. Instead, chief executive Stephen Thomas is planning to focus on the divorced, single and dumped market to offset rising levels of unemployment amongst our core market of young people. HSBC shocks City with Hong Kong move plan In retreat: the beleaguered chain is closing down branches starbucks gets jolted awake by 47m lossesTHere was a time when a Starbucks seemed to be springing up in every high street in London. But the coffee chains expansion in the capital has come to a halt after its UK branches lost nearly 47 million in the recession. Dozens of less successful branches are being shut or sold, with more closures to come next year, an extraordinary turnaround from the 50 or more openings a year during the boom. But it will be welcomed by cam- paigners opposed to the Starbuck-isation of Londons town centres. Coffee experts said Starbucks had been slower to react to the downturn with cut-price offers than its rivals and had paid the penalty for muscling in on top locations with sky- high rents. Profit margins were also wiped out by the soaring price of milk and the col- lapse of sterling, which pushed up the cost of imported coffee. One problem has been the concentration of outlets used by workers in the hard-hit banking and financial services industries. It made a loss after tax of 46.97 million in the year to 28 September compared with 4.95 million in the previous 12 months. BY JONATHAN PRYNN THE chief executive of one of HSBC today announced he was moving to head the bank from Hong Kong in what is being seen as a massive blow to the City. HSBC said it is relocating its principal office to Hong Kong to focus on emerging markets in a move the bank said showed the shift in the worlds centre of economic gravity from West to East. Its chief executive, Michael Geoghegan, will be set up in Hong Kong by February. Although HSBC will remain domiciled in London where its chairman, Stephen Green, and two executive directors will still be based, the move is seen as a huge blow to the capitals position as a global financial centre. Green described HSBCs additional management presence in Hong Kong as absolutely right and consistent with its strategy. He maintained: There is no question of HSBC pulling away from London, We will operate from two equally strategically important centres for the company. He said: The move further positions the group for the shift in the worlds centre of economic gravity from West to East. From Hong Kong, I will be in our largest and most important region. 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