Today's market overview
• Higher gas and power prices have been offsetting lower usage levels this year at
, leaving the gas and electricity provider trading in line with expectations.
• Oil and gas services group
has said that its year-to-date performance has been in line with expectations and it still remains on track to grow net profits by at least 15 per cent in 2012.
• International services firm
is to retain its contract to manage and operate the UK Atomic Weapons Establishment - the arm of the military which builds and maintains Britain's nuclear warheads.
• Soaring fuel costs contributed to a larger than expected first quarter loss at
International Consolidated Airlines Group
, the airline formed by the merger of British Airways and Iberia.
has, together with parent company GDF SUEZ, sold a large stake in Bahrain's Hidd Power Company (HPC).
• Speciality insurance company
has seen an increase in the amount of premiums written in the three months to the end of March, while avoiding any catastrophe claims.
• Spanish broadband and telecoms group Telefonica saw net profit fall by over a half in the first quarter after struggles in its home market.
• Investment trust,
British Assets Trust
, has seen its net asset value rise broadly in line with its benchmarks as equities recovered in the first three months of 2012.
• Harri Natunen, the new
Talvivaara Mining Co
mpany Chief Executive Officer, has barely been in the position two weeks but has already started making big changes.
• Yet more panic has been caused in a British board room this week after 67 per cent of investors in car dealer
voted against the company's remuneration report.
• Under pressure travel firm
said that summer bookings have improved in recent weeks but, as expected, first half seasonal losses have widened.
• Synthetic fuels company
has signed a tie-up with Russian oil giant Rosneft to help design and construct a gas-to-liquids demonstration plant.
, which barely two weeks ago was trumpeting a return to profit in 2011, was down in the dumps on Friday morning after revealing a sharp decline in first quarter production.
, the manufacturer of replacement hip and knee joints, says it has seen growth in all its markets except Australia and describes the start of the year as 'strong'.
the house builder and strategic land specialist, says it has opened seven new sales outlets since the end of last year and seen an increase in reservations.
• Plumbers merchant
has completed the sale of its UK retail business Bathstore, as part of its non-core disposal programme.
• Vladimir Kim, the Chairman and major shareholder of diversified mining giant
, told investors on Friday that he would hand over his duties to a new independent Chairman so that the company could meet regulations on corporate governance.