Profits slip for Friends Provident
Life assurance firm Friends Provident has announced a three per cent drop in pre-tax profits which could impact upon its 2008 target.The firm saw profits slump from £524 million in 2005 to last year's £509 million, despite new business profit growth in the UK reaching close to 70 per cent.However due to the "challenging protection market" the London-based insurer operates in, the firm warned that it may struggle to meet the targets it set in October last year.Six months ago, the company announced a "demanding" 2008 target of £180-£200 million in new business profits, a goal it may not meet."Although we remain committed to achieving this target, the product mix and, in particular, the level of protection sales, which has been subdued in recent months, will be critical," said Philip Moore, the group chief executive."It is early days, and we are making progress towards our goal, but the prospects for a more challenging protection market, and the impact on our 2008 target, will not be fully understood until later in 2007."The announcement of last year's profit slide caused the firm's shares to dip by seven per cent on Tuesday morning.
Channel 4 could merge with BBC worldwide
There are serious concerns that Channel 4 is on the brink of going into bankruptcy and a merger with BBC worldwide is seriously being considered by the television regulators. This is a move which has shocked many in the media market who while aware of the troubles of Channel 4 had not expect a potential merger with BBC worldwide to be added to the mix.
If the merger was to go ahead...
Christmas is a time of giving
As the festive period comes to a close and we look forward to the New Year, many people will be spending winter on the streets, homeless and in many cases struggling to find food. Perhaps this is a time when we should be looking towards the charitable sector, a sector which has been devastated by the recession and the economic turmoil in the UK, and consider how lucky many of us are to have a roof...Read More
ABI calls for sensitive approach to taxation issues
The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has today issued a statement urging remuneration committees on various UK public companies to be careful over share awards in the future. The ABI has also commented upon the UK government's forthcoming 50% tax band on banking bonuses and again advised that remuneration committees refrain from potentially expensive tax avoidance and tax reduction schemes fo...Read More
Retail sales up but where is the money coming from?
As UK retail sales improved again in July, after a particularly strong June, there is optimism on the high street but mystery as to where UK consumers are getting their money from. At a time when the property market is yet to fully recover, unemployment is set to smash through the 3 million barrier and the cost of living is still significantly higher than 12 months ago, how are UK consumers fundin...Read More
Profit warnings fell in 2009
Despite the fact that 2009 was one of the worst years on record for the UK economy, the number of profit warnings released by public companies fell by 37% to a six-year low. In total there were 282 profit warnings during 2009 with the vast majority of these coming in the first quarter when the UK economy appears to have been at its lowest. So what does this show us about the future? The final q...Read More