BBC News Companies

Top Stories

Features

Watch/Listen

Latest Updates

Marston's shares slide

Pint
Getty Images

Shares in the pub group Marston's fell as much as 6% before paring losses after it gave a trading update in which it said this year's pre-tax profits would be around £101m, slightly lower than last year.

Ralph Findlay, chief executive, said his focus was on reducing debt by £200m and creating a business that could generate cash, after dividends and expenditure.

'Our drinks businesses have performed well, achieving further growth against an exceptionally strong 2018. Wet-led pubs have led the charge continuing their positive trajectory and food pubs have achieved modest sales growth.

"Operationally, we remain focused on further improving our proposition and plan to make additional investment in both our pub teams and digital marketing in the forthcoming year," he said.

Eon to cut hundreds of UK jobs

Eon logo
Getty Images

German energy firm Eon is to cut between 500 and 600 jobs from its UK workforce of 9,000, the firm says.

It said in a statement: "Suppliersin the UK energy market are facing a significant threat to their futures in a market that continues to be extremely competitive but that is also massively distorted by the energy price cap and the many firms now seemingly content to run at a significant loss.

"Only companies that continue to evolve and adapt to the nature and challenges of the market will be able to succeed. As a result, we can confirm we have announced to colleagues a proposal to reduce between 500 and 600 roles across support activities and managerial positions in the UK.

"We will consult fully with trade unions on these proposals and, as always, involve our colleagues fully with the detail of any proposed changes to how we operate and keep them informed of any developments."

Thomas Cook rescue 'throwing good money after bad'

Andrea Leadsom
Parliament Live TV

Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom is up in front of the business committee, and she is being quizzed on Thomas Cook.

When asked why the government didn't put up £250m to keep the firm afloat, Ms Leadsom says:

"The Treasury looked very carefully into the case, and it was quite clearly the £200m+... that the company was looking for would only have dealt with it in the short term, and they were carrying significant amounts of debt, and it was simply the case that it would be throwing good money after bad.

JPMorgan beats Wall St estimates

JP Morgan Chase building
Getty Images

JPMorgan Chase has beaten Wall Street estimates for quarterly profit by a wide margin, underpinned by strength in bond trading, underwriting and home lending revenue.

Net income for the quarter that ended on 30 September was $9.08bn compared with $8.38bn a year ago.

The bank's quarterly reports are watched for signs about the health of the US economy as it is a major residential and commercial lender as well as an asset manager.

Hays said economic conditions difficult

workers
Getty Images

Recruitment firm Hays, which employs 11,500 employees in 265 offices in 33 countries, has issued a trading update for the three-months to end of September.

It says net fees are flat "with difficult economic conditions and tough growth comparatives".

It described the UK & Ireland as being "increasingly difficult markets" with net fees down 4% while Alistair Cox, chief executive said that overall the firm had has "delivered a solid quarter of stable net fees, despite tougher global macroeconomic conditions and reduced business confidence".

"Even with these challenges, ten countries grew fees by more than 10%, and we produced eight quarterly country fee records, including the USA and China. Asia and the Americas performed well, both growing by 7%."

Woodford Trust performance

chart
BBC

This is the share price graph of the Woodford Patient Capital Trust since its launch in 2015.

It is not directly related to the suspended Woodford Income Fund but as the graph shows, its share slide came as the fund was suspended in June.

It has been announced today that the fund will now be wound up. Unlike the investment trust, it does not have shares that can be traded on the stock market.

Sports Direct 'dominates the High Street'

BBC Radio 5 Live

Wake Up To Money

Mike Ashley
Reuters

Mike Ashley's Sports Direct has called for an investigation into the sportswear industry, complaining about the dominance of Adidas and Nike.

The firm said the "must-have" brands hold a bargaining position which allows them to control both the supply and the price of their products.

Adidas has blocked the company from selling some of its product

Radio 5 Live's Wake Up to Money asked Maria Malone of the fashion Institute at Manchester Metropolitan University if Sports Direct was right to be concerned about the dominance of the footwear companies.

"Not really," she said. "If you think it his man is dominating the High Street

"It's pretty choice for him to say these sports brands are dominating the market," she said.

Sports Direct is the "discounter of the sports world and at end he could have a case to say he wants to continue to sell the old lines, the basic lines from these two brands".

It is about brands controlling their "brand equity".