Business news and markets: live – Monday October 21, 2013

Business news and markets: live – Monday October 21, 2013

Quote It’s only paid when it starts generating electricity, it won’t touch consumer bills until 10 years time. We’ve got to replace two thirds of capacity in the next 15 years, we’ve got a huge gap, if we just rely on gas we’ll see prices going through the roof, I’m not prepared to gamble on future energy prices.

It won’t only help us keep the lights on it will help us to a carbon-neutral future.

Merlin to raise £200m in float

08.00 In corporate news today, Legoland owner Merlin has announced its long-awaited IPO (announcement here)

It wants to raise £200m to reduce debt and pay costs, while shareholders Blackstone, CVC and KIRKBI will all sell a proportion of their ownership.

Here’s Merlin’s chief executive Nick Varney:

Quote Merlin Entertainments comes to the market with a consistent record of strong growth in both revenues and profits and bright prospects for the future. We have successfully followed a clear and proven strategy to build a high-growth international family entertainment business, built on strong brands and a portfolio of attractions balanced by geographies, products and demographics. Our very strong trading performance so far this year, with revenues over 11pc ahead of 2012, is a further reflection of this

Merlin owns Legoland as well as Madame Tussauds and other attractions

A few questions remain about nuclear deal

07.55 Energy Correspondent Emily Gosden is tweeting on today’s Hinkley Point agreement, but not everything has been explained.

Cameron says Hinkley Point will create 25,000 jobs

07.45 The Prime Minister has hailed this morning’s nuclear deal, here’s the full announcement from the Government.

Quote As we compete in the tough global race, this underlines the confidence there is in Britain and makes clear that we are very much open for business. This also marks the next generation of nuclear power in Britain, which has an important part to play in contributing to our future energy needs and our longer term security of supply.

Co-op increases PPI provisions

07.15 The Co-operative Bank has booked an extra £100m-£105m in provisions related to PPI mis-selling, arrears charges and mortgage charges.

The announcement comes as the bank reviews its accounts in an attempt to recapitalise. Although the Co-op does not need to raise new capital beyond the £1.5bn agreed with the Prudential Regulation Authority in the summer, the Co-op Group is now expected to lose control of the bank, the BBC has reported this morning.

All the Co-op says is that “the Bank is continuing to work on the details of its Recapitalisation Plan and expects to announce further information shortly”.

Hinkley Point agreement reached

07.10 The Government has this morning announced the terms for the first new nuclear power plant in a generation with France’s EDF.

As we report this morning, the agreement has been made at a “strike price” of between £89.50 and £92.50, and the plant will cost up to £16bn.

Hinkley Point. Image: Bloomberg

Best of the rest

07.00 The Financial Times (£): David Cameron is planning to build on the huge popularity of the Royal Mail privatisation by prioritising retail investors for the sell-offs ahead of the general election in 2015.

The Times (£): The number of Australians issued visas to work in Britain has halved in the past eight years.

The Guardian: Vodafone’s senior team will collect a £56m windfall when the mobile operator completes the sale of its Verizon Wireless subsidiary next year.

Here’s the best of today’s Daily Telegraph business section

06.50 The Government has given the go-ahead for Britain’s first new nuclear plant in a generation with France’s EDF, at a strike price of £92.50 per megawatt hour, writes Roland Gribben.

The boss of French Connection has attacked Britain’s “absurd” business rates system, as Louise Armitstead reports.

The economy grew at its fastest pace for more than three years in the third quarter, official figures are expected to show this week, writes Philip Aldrick

Across the Pacific, a debt problem is building in Japan, argues Roger Bootle.

Good morning

06.45 Good morning and welcome to our daily business and markets live blog, your one stop shop for all the breaking business stories of the day.

Finance News – Business news from the UK and world


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