The Business: Monday August 4 2014
Company news, markets and financial talking points, available from 8am Monday to Friday
HSBC is bracing for a fresh onslaught of PPI costs, reports the Financial Times. The lender, which has set aside £2.1bn for PPI claims so far, is expected to take a further £75m charge for the second quarter of this year when it reports second-quarter earnings later today. The latest round of provisions from top lenders means PPI is now “by far the UK’s biggest mis-selling scandal” according to the consumer group Which.
HMV is back – that’s the verdict of the entertainment industry’s latest data report. The retailer has reclaimed second place in the market from Tesco after it grew its share of CD, DVD and video game sales in the UK from 13.6% to 14.7% in the 12 weeks to July 6. The latest data marks a remarkable comeback by the retailer which collapsed into administration early last year after failing to cope with the rise of Amazon and the decision of supermarkets to sell cut price CDs, DVDs and video games.
Bookmakers William Hill enjoyed a surge in betting during the World Cup, reports Sky News. More than 20m bets were placed with the company during the Brazil tournament, with more than 75% of those placed online. The company says this was an 80% increase in betting compared with the previous World Cup, in 2010. The largest bet on the World Cup was $350,000 on Argentina to beat Iran, placed in Nevada. Argentina won the match 1-0 thanks to a 91st minute strike.
The rocketing cost of energy means homeowners in Europe are now more worried about energy bills than covering their rent or mortgage, according to a new survey. Europe's largest DIY retail group, Kingfisher, surveyed some 17,000 households in nine European countries. "There is a staggering increase in the number of people who intend to prioritise energy efficiency," said Kingfisher boss Sir Ian Cheshire.
“There's a slight dip in confidence, although we shouldn't overplay it. It's the first dip in two years. Economic growth will slow at the end of the year.” Charles Davies, economist at the Chartered Institute of Accountants, tells BBC Radio 4's Today that the UK economy will lose a little momentum in the months ahead.
The strong pound is worrying exporters, reports The Guardian. A string of firms including Rolls-Royce and defence group BAE Systems lined up last week to complain that adverse currency movements are wiping millions off their balance sheets. Sterling has risen more than 10% against the euro, and 11% against the dollar over the last 12 months, harming London-listed companies with overseas divisions in Europe when they translate their foreign earnings back into pounds.
FTSE-100: down -0.76 to 6679.18
Dow Jones: down -0.42 to 16493.37
Dax: down -2.10 to 9210.08
Cac-40: down -1.02 to 4202.78
Nikkei: down -0.10 to 15508.19
Hang Seng: up +0.42 to 24635.67
US dollar: buys €0.74500 and £0.59410
Sterling: buys $1.68320 and €1.25400
Oil: $104.66 down -1.3