Scottish Business Briefing – April 30th 2013

BP: Profit dip. Picture: Getty Images

BP: Profit dip. Picture: Getty Images

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WELCOME to scotsman.com’s Scottish Business Briefing. Every morning we bring you a comprehensive round-up of all news affecting business in Scotland today.

ECONOMICS

CBI chief questions plan for Anglo-Scots currency union

CBI director general John Cridland yesterday cast more doubt over the prospect of an independent Scotland sticking with the pound. He said there were “many unanswered questions” over the proposals for a currency union if Scotland broke free from its UK partners but wanted to retain sterling. (The Scotsman)

Read all today’s economics news from scotsman.com

ENERGY & UTILITIES

BP’s profits edge lower but beat forecasts

Oil giant BP saw profits edge lower in the first three months of the year. Underlying replacement cost profit, which strips out the effect of oil price movements, was $4.2bn (£2.6bn) - down from $4.7bn for the same period a year ago. However, the result beat analysts’ forecasts of $3.27bn. When the one-off gain from BP’s sale of its interest in joint venture TNK-BP is included, the firm made $16.6bn in the quarter. (BBC)

Read all today’s energy and utilities news from scotsman.com

BANKING

Lloyds Banking Group first quarter profits rise to £2bn

Lloyds Banking Group has reported a big rise in profits for the first three months of the year. The bank, which is 39% taxpayer-owned, reported a statutory pre-tax profit of £2.04bn in the first quarter, up from £280m for the same period last year. Group chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio said the bank had made “substantial progress”. (BBC)

Turnover grows at Multrees as 40 jobs created

A Scottish company that provides complex support services for investment management firms has achieved multimillion-pound sales and created around 40 jobs in its first two full years in business. Multrees Investor Services grew turnover by 60% annually, to £5.5 million, last year after generating strong interest in its services, which can take care of many of the tasks that have to be completed once an investment decision is made. (The Herald)

Read all today’s banking news from scotsman.com

FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE

Europe’s woes spark hunt for new markets

A DIP in Scotland’s food and drink exports last year blamed on the eurzone crisis is to lead to a greater focus on more promising markets. Although the industry’s exports reached £5.31 billion – the second highest on record – a drop off in demand from some European countries meant the figure was down 1.4 per cent on 2011. (The Scotsman)

Read all today’s food, drink and agriculture news from scotsman.com

INDUSTRY

SCOTSMAN CONFERENCE

Defence Policy: Protecting Scotland and Preserving Jobs – 14 June, Edinburgh

Book today and secure 20 per cent early bird discount at this unmissable event. Ends 30 April. Top speakers including Angus Robertson MP; Jim Murphy MP and Prof Hew Strachan of Oxford University will debate the big issues facing the defence industry today.

(The Scotsman Conferences)

Balfour Beatty hammered after profit warning

THE continuing difficulties facing the construction industry were highlighted yesterday when sector bellwether Balfour Beatty was forced to issue a £50 million profits warning. Shares in the group fell sharply after the firm flagged “extremely tough” conditions in its UK construction operation and said group chief executive Andrew McNaughton would personally take charge of the arm. (The Scotsman)

Read all today’s industry news from scotsman.com

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