City&FinanceBriefing London Lite Thursday, 15 October 2009 37 Inbrief Travellerssplash out at Smiths WH SMITH, the stationery and book seller, saw pre-tax profit rise 8% to 82 million in the year to August as travellers bought its wares at stations and airports. Sales at Smiths travel shops, including 100 hospital branches, grew 8%. Chief executive Kate Swann said it was still a tough environment but trading was good across the board. Overseas arm gives Britvic fizz BRITVIC, maker of Robinsons and Tango fruit drinks, saw revenue rise 5.6% to 978.8 million in the year to September, fuelled by growth in its international arm. The firm said its UK fizzy drinks sales outperformed the market, growing 6.3% against a sector up by 0.9%. Chief executive Paul Moody said Britvic performed well by selling more branded soft drinks at higher prices. Kleinwort sold in 225m deal ONE of the oldest names in the City changed hands today, as Kleinwort Benson, whose history dates back to the 1850s, was sold by Commerzbank to Belgian conglomerate RHJ International for 225 million. Kleinwort is now a London and Channel Islands-based private bank and wealth manager with 670 staff and 21 billion of funds under management. Roche boosted by Tamiflu rush TAMIFLU maker Roche today smashed analysts forecasts, with total sales in the third quarter hitting Swfr12.39 billion (7.62 billion), and upgraded its predictions on revenues from the swine flu treatment as governments queue up for it. Tamiflu sales for the year were expected to be Swfr2.7 billion, up from Swfr2 billion. Australia Dollars 1.6546 Canada Dollars 1.5616 Denmark Kroner 7.5965 Eurozone Euro 1.0237 Hong Kong Dollars 11.7300 Japan Yen 135.5500 New Zealand Dollars 2.0057 South Africa Rand 10.8300 Sweden Kronor 10.5800 Switzerland Francs 1.5509 UAE Dirham 5.4978 United States Dollars 1.5233 TOURIST RATES DOWN 19.0 at 5237.10 FTSE 100 DOW JONES NIKKEI -$ UP 144.80 at 10,015.86 UP 178.44 at 10,238.65 UP 2.16 at $1.6193 >>For all the latest City share prices, call 0905 817 1694* or visit thisismoney.co.uk * Calls cost 75p/min from a BT landline & last approx 1 min per quote. Not all stocks are available Foreign parents lift sales MOTHERCARE sales rose 7% in the second quarter as parents splashed out on childrenswear and baby products at its international stores. The retailer, with about 1000 outlets in over 50 countries, said UK like- for-like sales rose by 3% while they soared 23.2% internationally. Chief executive Ben Gordon said: Whilst the economic environment remains uncertain, our performance gives us confidence for the rest of the year. New City jobs forecast as economy recovers UP to 20,000 jobs will be created in the City over the next three years as banks and fund managers start the slow recovery from the global credit crisis, according to a leading economics consultancy. The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) today slashed its estimate for job losses in the financial sector during 2009 from 29,000 to 18,000. This is because of the unexpected speed with which the economy has turned the corner. That means that some 49,000 posts across the wholesale financial sector will have been lost during the financial crisis and it could be several years until employment levels in the City return to their 2007 peak of 345,000. The current headcount of 305,000 City workers is at its lowest since 1998. There will be a diminished rate of job creation in the future with employment in the City not expected to return to peak levels for over a decade, predicted the CEBRs Benjamin Williamson. He added: Re-regulation of Londons wholesale financial services sector will act to limit its economic activity over the medium term. Whilst the City is still expected to retain its position as one of the worlds leading financial centres, growth is likely to remain below recent levels owing to tougher capital requirements and lower yields reducing firms profits, he said. Heat is on: power companies are under pressure Energy bills set to tumble as buyers begin to dry upUK WHOLESALE energy and gas prices are on the verge of col- lapse, with major negative rami- fications for Britains leading supply companies. Those are the headlines of explosive research by investment bank Morgan Stanley, which turns on its head claims by the energy industry that household bills will stay at near all-time highs. In a research note, Morgan Stanleys Bobby Chada says: Lower demand with little sign of any recovery means UK gas and power markets are heavily oversupplied. He says the change in supply-demand balance is stark, as National Grid has revised down its peak power demand forecasts by 10% and claims peak demand in 2015-16 will be about 7% below 2007-8. Morgan Stanley predicts the energy market is on the verge of contango collapse. Contango is futures market-trading jargon for an upward-sloping forward curve where prices for future delivery are higher than for immediate delivery and those in succeeding months are progressively dearer. That, says Chada, will pile the political and regulatory pres- sure on Britains big six supply companies to cut prices not only during the winter but also in the run up to the General Election. Suppliers have said they cant cut prices because they bought supplies last year when the wholesale price was high. BY ROBERT LEA pressureunderarecompaniespoweron:isHeat tosetbillsEnergy curveforwardupward-slopingan deliveryfutureforpriceswhere immediateforthanhigherare succeedinginthoseanddelivery dearer.progressivelyaremonths thepilewillChada,saysThat, pres-regulatoryandpolitical supplysixbigBritainsonsure onlynotpricescuttocompanies theinalsobutwintertheduring canttheysaidhaveSuppliers boughttheybecausepricescut thewhenyearlastsupplies 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.html40.html41.html42.html43.html