The media world is one that perplexes me. I still fail to understand why broadcasters insist on increasing the volume every time an advert break comes along – and I’m also baffled why (to my knowledge) nobody has shown an advert in slow motion (as most of us fast forward through them, it would seem that this approach might actually make sense). Anyhow, despite my misgivings about the effectiveness of advertising ITV have announced that they will now finally pay a dividend in December. The first time since 2008. The “troubled” broadcaster has seen an increase in revenue of 4% to £1,027m. It would seem that ITV has become very cost conscious and worked hard to reduce its debt and reduce expenses, this strategy has had considerable success for the company’s financial data.

Two big players within the financial services industry are continuing to struggle and adjust to the realities of a harsh economic environment, punitive fines and the new rules for advice giving in 2013. Barclays have announced 3,000 job cuts and HSBC are cutting 30,000 on a global basis as part of a £2.1bn cost cutting exercise. Barclays have actually been doing rather better, although a huge amount (£1bn – that’s a US billion and actually £1,000m) has to be set aside for PPI claims. Total income net of insurance claims reduced to £15,241m from £15,730m. Profit before tax was up from £2,963m to £3,678m which is a significant increase of £715m or 24%, although the statutory figures are almost the reverse with gross profit of £2,644m compared to £3,947m the year before, a reduction of £1,303m or 33%. This may be a case of how the data is presented.
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