There has been some good news in the construction industry, with Bovis, the housebuilders, reporting a 6% increase for 2010 pre-tax profits, achieving £18.5m compared with £7.5m the previous year, as more homes were being purchased as well as the cost of building homes reduced. This news comes in the week that Lloyds are beginning to offer first time buyers 95% mortgages again. So there are signs of improvements in the property market.
Mr B is expanding again – Virgin Atlantic announced it is to create 450 jobs in the UK, 350 cabin staff and 50 pilots, as the airline giant will begin a new route between Manchester and Las Vegas as well as an increase in London departures to the Caribbean and Ghana. Great news for a summer outside the UK.
Wolrd famous investment guru, Warren Buffett of Berkshire Hathaway (perhaps the most boring investment website ever?) is to buy Lubrizol in a cash deal worth £5.6bn – 28% above its latest market valuation; the chemicals firm saw net income rise by 46% last year to £468m. I’m guessing that this will be one to watch!
The markets are buying themselves, the US technology exchange Nasdaq is to make a £7.5bn bid for NYSE Euronext, whilst seeking £3.2bn of debt to fund the offer; the deal will compete with the £6.4bn deal between NYSE and Deutsche Boerse already agreed between the two companies’ boards in February.
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