6 February 2014 Last updated at 05:26

Business Live: Bombardier wins Crossrail contract

    06:00: Ben Morris Business Reporter

    There's plenty to talk about this morning, including Sony and AstraZeneca results later. If you want to get in touch, email at bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk and tweet us @bbcbusiness.

    06:00: Sarah Treanor Business reporter, BBC News

    Good morning, and welcome to Thursday's business Live page. On the agenda: Twitter's first full year results as a public company, and the latest from the Bank of England on interest rates. Stay with us, we will be here until 13:00.

    Twitter logos

    Microblogging site Twitter saw its shares slump in after-hours trading last night after reporting a net loss of $645m (£396m) for 2013, three months after its flotation on the New York Stock Exchange. The site saw a slowdown of growth in user numbers.

    TWITTER RESULTS 06:03: Radio 5 live

    Investors are wondering how Twitter can persuade users to spend more time on the site, according to Zack Reiss-Davis, social media expert at analysts Forrester. Speaking on Wake up to Money he says investors were less shocked by Twitter's loss and more worried that a key measure of activity on the site has gone down for two consecutive quarters.

    DRUGS FIRMS 06:07: Radio 5 live

    The big drugs firms "are shrinking to grow" says Savvas Neophytou, pharmaceuticals analyst at Panmure Gordon on Wake up to Money. GlaxoSmithKline has been selling businesses to help pay for research and development, as well as funding dividend payouts and share buybacks. He says that returns on research and development in the industry have been "dreadful". AstraZeneca reports results later.

    CURRENCY INVESTIGATION 06:13: Robert Peston Business editor

    New York's top banking regulator has opened an investigation into foreign exchange trading at major banks, the BBC's business editor Robert Peston reports. "New York's Department of Financial Services is very much the late arrival to the worldwide investigation into whether up to 15 huge global banks manipulated the foreign exchange market," Robert says. The Financial Times leads with the story this morning.

    Disney's Thor: The Dark World

    Late on Wednesday Walt Disney reported record earnings for the last three months of 2013. Net income rose by a third to $1.84bn (£1.12bn) from a year earlier. Disney was helped by box office hits including Frozen and Thor: The Dark World.

    TWITTER RESULTS 06:24: Radio 4

    "I'm on Twitter, I'm a geek, but my wife looks at it and says it's gobbledegook," Larry Magid, CBS technology analyst tells Simon Jack on the Today programme. "Sometimes you just need more than 140 characters to say what you want to say," he adds.

    INTEREST RATES 06:28: Radio 4
    Bank of England at night

    Interest rates are expected to remain at 0.5% today. Last year the Bank of England said there would be no discussion of rises until unemployment fell to 7%, but unemployment has fallen faster than expected. Philip Shaw, Chief Economist at Investec tells Simon Jack on the Today programme, "this is a nice problem to have for the Bank because, really, falling unemployment is a good thing... but tying forward guidance to unemployment was probably unwise".

    Via Twitter Rory Cellan-Jones Technology correspondent

    tweets: "Wonder how far Twitter shares will fall later today. It has been valued as if it will follow Facebook's growth path - doubts now surfacing"

    SONY RESULTS 06:47:
    sony computers

    Sony has confirmed that it is in talks to sell its personal computer business, which makes the Vaio brand, to Japan Industrial Partners. The company is also accelerating changes at its loss making TV business, where it will focus on "high-end models". Sony is taking a 20bn yen (£120m) charge this year to cover the reorganisation, as a result it now expects a loss of 110bn yen (£665m) in the current fiscal year which ends 31 March.

    BILLIONAIRE'S ROW 06:59: Radio 5 live
    A mansion

    As well as being known as Britain's wealthiest street, Bishop's Avenue in North London has also gained notoriety because many of those houses have been vacant for years. On 5 Live Breakfast, Stephen Chittenden speaks to Trevor Abrahamson, an estate agent to the world's super rich, who sells properties on the street for up to £50m: "With a road of 66 properties it's natural you get some in a state of flux... these people have a right to do what they please with their properties," he says.


    Bombardier has won a £1bn contract to supply rolling stock for the cross-London Crossrail project. Canada's Bombardier, which has its British base in Derby, will supply 65 trains for the rail scheme which is due to open in 2018.

    A beach at night

    Tui Travel, which owns package holiday brands Sunsail and Thompson has narrowed its losses for the three months to the end of December, compared with the same period in 2012. It lost £108m, a slight improvement on 2012 when it lost £100m. The company's chief executive, Peter Long, said that "efficiency savings in France" and improvements in its specialist activity offerings had contributed to an improved performance.

    CROSSRAIL CONTRACT 07:27: Radio 4

    "I'm delighted, it's fantastic news and a resounding endorsement for our Derby team. It will secure over 800 manufacturing jobs," Francis Paonessa, president of Bombardier UK tells Simon Jack on the Today programme. He was responding to news that Bombardier has been awarded a £1bn contract to supply 65 trains for Crossrail, the largest infrastructure project in Europe.

    AstraZeneca Shanghai

    The UK's second biggest drugs firm, AstraZeneca has reported a pre-tax profit of $3.3bn (£2bn) for 2013, that's down sharply on 2012 when it made $10.7bn. In its results, AstraZeneca highlighted that 2012 was boosted by the sale of rights to the drug Nexium. Last year it was hit by a $1.7bn charge related to its Bydureon drug.

    Via Twitter Robert Peston Business editor

    tweets: "Fall in Vodafone's European revenues shocks, down 10.1% on "organic" measure, & Italy 16.6% lower: no sign of econ recovery in its figures"

    PANAMA CANAL 07:52:
    Building work in the Panama Canal

    The Spanish building company leading the expansion project on the Panama Canal has denied that work at the waterway has been halted. The president of Sacyr, Manuel Manrique, said no date had been set for construction work to stop. The Panama Canal Authority and the building companies involved are engaged in a dispute over who should foot the $1.6bn (£1bn) bill for extra costs.

    CREDIT SUISSE 08:01:
    Credit Suisse, Zurich

    Credit Suisse reported a fourth quarter profit of 267m swiss francs (£181m), not much changed from the same period in the previous year. However, the figure was less than analysts were expecting. The bank has set aside 339m swiss francs to cover lawsuits over mortgages, and 175m swiss francs for costs related to a US investigation into tax evasion.

    WALES STAMP DUTY 08:02: Radio 5 live
    Terraced housing

    The Welsh Conservatives say they will abolish stamp duty on houses worth up to a quarter of a million pounds, in order to help people get on the housing ladder. But housing expert Henry Pryor tells Adam Parsons on 5 Live Breakfast, "those people who might be motivated to make a purchase rather than not, by saving 1% of the property value, need to look at their finances more closely, as it would imply they'll have problems with interest rate rises further down the track".

    INDIAN BOSSES 08:18: BBC World News

    What do PepsiCo, MasterCard, Diageo, Adobe and now Microsoft have in common? Well, they all have chief executives born and bred in India. Our Mumbai correspondent Yogita Limaye asks: Why so many Indian global CEOs?

    Vodafone sign and a man texting

    Vodafone, the world's second biggest mobile phone services provider, has reported falls in key measures of revenue, and says the final three months of 2013 were "challenging". In Europe revenue was down 9.6% compared to the same period in 2012. However, chief executive Vittorio Colao said that he is "confident" that a shift towards faster 4G services is "gaining momentum".

    A trader

    Shares in London are in positive territory, with the FTSE-100 up 0.3% in the first half an hour of trading. And there's a similar start to Thursday on the continent, with the Dax in Frankfurt up almost 0.5%, and the Cac-40 in Paris rising 0.4%.

    MARKET MOVERS 08:44:

    Despite saying that the end of last year was challenging, Vodafone shares are up 1.6% this morning. But AstraZeneca shares fell 1.6% after its latest results. Reckitt Benckiser Group shares are leading the FTSE-100 higher. Speculation that the company might be the subject of a takeover bid have been boosting its shares this week.

    HOUSE PRICES 08:52:
    For sale signs

    House prices rose at an annual rate of 7.3% in January according to the Halifax. But that's slightly slower than December which saw a 7.5% growth rate and November which recorded 7.7% growth.

    Imagination headquarters

    You may not have heard of Imagination Technologies, but its graphics technology is used in most smartphones. And today shares have soared almost 15% after it announced an extension of a licensing agreement with Apple.

    PLASTIC BAG TAX 09:11: Radio 4
    Plastic bags

    The government wants a 5p tax on plastic carrier bags to come into force next year. But this morning the chair of the Environmental Audit Committee, Joan Walley, is accusing ministers of making a "complete mess" of the plans. She tells Simon Jack on the Today Programme, "we think it's a good idea to have a charge on plastic bags... but to have a scheme that's going to work it's got to be simple and applied across the board".

    CORNWALL ECONOMY 09:20: Radio 4
    Dawlish, Devon

    "I am very worried," says Chris Pomfret chairman of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership on the Today Programme. The damage to the train line at Dawlish is a concern to him, but he also complains about the lack of long term investment in transport links to Cornwall. Cornwall has grown more than any region of the UK over the last ten years, apart from London he says.

    NEW CAR SALES 09:31:
    Ford Fiesta

    The number of new cars sold in the UK in January was up by 7.6% says the car industry body the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). There were 154,562 new vehicles registered last month, and the best-selling model was the Ford Fiesta.

    DAIMLER 09:41:
    Mercedes logo

    Daimler had a record year in 2013, selling 2.35 million vehicles. Net profit rose 28% to 8.72bn euros (£7.23bn). The owner of Mercedes-Benz expects "significant growth in unit sales and revenue" in 2014. Shares are up 3.3% in Frankfurt.

    Via Twitter Linda Yueh Chief business correspondent

    tweets: Research shows owners of homes worth more than £15m spend £4m-£5m a year in UK, homes worth more than £5m spend £2-3m

    NEW CAR SALES 10:02: BBC News Channel
    A car forecourt

    "The average car on the road in the UK is about seven years old," Mike Hawes from the SMMT tells Ben Thompson on the News Channel. He says replacing some of those ageing cars and an improving economy, could be behind an increase in new car sales in January.

    CROSSRAIL CONTRACT 10:12: Via Email

    Ian, Crewe emails: "As my nearest town's football team's nickname is the 'railway men' and with the presence of Bombardier nearby, I believe it will only make things better if MORE UK train contracts are awarded in the UK".

    A graph on a markets board

    The credit ratings agency Fitch says it is "surprised" by the severity of recent financial turmoil in some emerging markets. Michele Napolitano, director of sovereign ratings at Fitch, said at a conference on Thursday that the agency may change its outlook on some of those economies next month.

    A man stands by a London Stock Excchange sign

    The FTSE 100 in London is keeping up its gains this morning, rising almost 0.5%. Elsewhere and in Germany the Dax is up over 1%, and in Paris the Cac-40 is also up over 1%. Investors will be waiting for interest rate announcements from the Bank of England and the European Central Bank later.

    PLASTIC BAG TAX 10:44: BBC News Channel

    Joan Walley from the Environmental Audit Committee is back, speaking about charges for plastic bags, this time on the News Channel. She says, "Many of the small business associations we've spoken to have actually come out against current exemptions to the charges for plastic bags".

    The Superdry catwalk

    SuperGroup - the parent company of the Superdry fashion chain has seen sales increase 22% over the final three months of 2013. The company said that its policy of not discounting in the run up to Christmas had contributed to its strong performance. SuperGroup chief executive Julian Dunkerton told Reuters, "The retailers that held their nerve and had a real focus on full price have had the best Christmas".

    Via Twitter Robert Peston Business editor

    tweets: Barclays' investment banking bonus pool to rise from 2012's £1.3bn

    Michel Combes

    Shares in France's Alcatel-Lucent, one of the world's biggest suppliers of equipment used for the internet, have soared by almost 10%. Investors were cheered by its latest set of results, which showed it cut its net loss last year by a third to 1.3bn euros (£1bn). The group has been undergoing a major reorganisation under a new chief executive, Michel Combes.

    BARCLAYS BONUSES 11:25: Via Blog Robert Peston Business editor

    blogs: "My sources there tell me that the (Barclays) board has become increasingly concerned that its huge investment bank is being damaged by defections to higher-paying US banks - and is therefore maintaining pay and increasing it for some, even though revenues have been under pressure."

    BENEFITS CAP 11:35:

    You might be aware that the government has capped benefits at £26,000-a-year, equivalent to the average family's earnings. It has released figures today showing that 8,000 people are no longer subject to that cap - 40% of them because they found jobs. The others reduced their benefits or had other changes of circumstances. The cap began in four areas of London in April and was rolled out elsewhere during the summer.

    CORK FLOODING 11:46:

    This picture has been popular on Twitter this morning. Canoeists have taken to the flooded streets of Cork, after the River Lee burst its banks. The city's quays flooded on Tuesday night. Take a look at this slightly unreal video footage.

    Bank of England

    The Bank of England keeps interest rates on hold at 0.5%, as expected. No change to QE programme, which remains at £375bn.

    Via Twitter Hugh Pym Chief economics correspondent, BBC News

    tweets: "B o E: reached its decision in context of monetary policy guidance announced alongside the publication of the August 2013 Inflation Report"

    VOLVO TRUCKS 12:18:
    Volvo truck

    The world's second biggest truck maker, Volvo, plans to cut an additional 2,400 jobs this year. That adds to the 2,000 job cuts announced in October. The firm struggled in 2013, when sales fell 9% and profits were down by two thirds.

     Chevrolet Colorado z71

    General Motors, the world's second biggest carmaker has just posted weaker-than-expected results for the final quarter of 2013. Revenue rose 3% to $40.5bn (£24.8bn) over a billion dollars below expectations. During the quarter GM incurred costs of $200m relating to the exit of the Chevrolet brand from Europe and the reorganisation of its Australian operations.

    ECB HOLDS RATES 12:47:
    Euro notes

    The European Central Bank has just said that it will hold interest rates at 0.25%. The euro rose on the news.

    POPE'S HARLEY 12:51: BBC World News
    The Pope's Harley Davidson

    A Harley-Davidson previously owned by Pope Francis is to be auctioned in Paris to raise funds for charity. As Clare Brennan explains, the motorbike was given to the head of the Roman Catholic Church by Harley-Davidson in June last year, to mark the brand's 110th anniversary.

    Zimbabwe dollar notes

    Once known for its billion dollar notes and hyper-inflation, Zimbabwe must be the only place in the world to have eight currencies as legal tender - none of them its own. Brian Hungwe in Harare looks at a country suffering from multi-currency confusion.

    12:59: Sarah Treanor Business reporter, BBC News

    It's goodbye from us on this busy news day. We hope you will join us from 06:00 tomorrow for the of the business stories and commentary.


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