Inchcape to sell Australia retail sites, Serco secures 2-year contract extension
The FTSE 100 was called to open 24 points higher at 7,291.
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Auto distributor Inchcape said it was selling three retail sites in Australia to Sime Darby Motors for £63m.The disposal follows the sale of three sites in May and July 2019 to other parties and the deal was expected to complete in the fourth quarter.
Serco has secured a two-year extension to a contract with the Australian government to continue to provide services at onshore immigration detention facilities until 10 December 2021.
The public services company, which has been providing immigration services to the Australian Government since October 2009, said the terms of the extension have yet to be finalised.
Retailers and unions are calling for urgent government action to help struggling high streets as new data shows the number of shops, pubs and restaurants lying empty is rising at the fastest pace in nearly a decade. About 16 stores closed their doors every day in the first half of 2019 while only nine opened, resulting in a net decline of 1,234 chain stores on Britain’s top 500 high streets according to analysis by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and high street analysts the Local Data Company (LDC). – Guardian
BMW will make workers at its Mini plant in Oxford take unpaid leave for two weeks or more if a no-deal Brexit causes major disruption to its business. The German carmaker is ready to close the Cowley factory for at least a fortnight from the 31 October Brexit deadline if BMW has problems importing components for vehicles, its chief financial officer Nicolas Peter said. The shutdown could stretch to more than three weeks, he added. – Guardian
Homebuyers are stepping onto the housing ladder with ever-smaller deposits as the bumper mortgages popular in the years before the credit crunch regain a bigger foothold in the market. Just over one in 20 new mortgages was given to a borrower with a loan worth between 90pc and 95pc of the value of their home, meaning they put down deposits of between just 5pc and 10pc. – Telegraph
Opposition to Advent’s £4 billion takeover of Cobham has grown after a big shareholder in the British aerospace and defence company said it was minded to reject the bid. Sanderson Asset Management, which owns 2.4 per cent of Cobham, has said that it is “inclined to vote against” the 165p-a-share cash offer from the American private equity firm at an investor meeting to approve the deal on Monday. – The Times
Buying a retirement income is more expensive than at any time in at least 25 years because of an unprecedented fall in government bond yields. Annuity rates, which reflect the guaranteed annual income for life that can be bought with a lump sum, have slumped to a modern-day low, Moneyfacts, the financial information group, said yesterday. – The Times
US stocks turned in another mixed performance on Tuesday after some weak Chinese data overnight was overshadowed by reports that the country had agreed to increase purchases of American agricultural products.
At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.28% at 26,909.43, while the S&P 500 closed 0.03% firmer at 2,979.38 and the Nasdaq Composite saw out the session 0.04% lower at 8,084.16.