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Wage growth strongest for nearly a decade

Wage growth strongest for nearly a decade

Business
Pay packets rose by an average of 3.1% in the three months to August, the fastest pace for nearly a decade, according to official figures. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) also said unemployment fell by 47,000 to 1.36 million while the unemployment rate remained at a 43-year low of 4%.Pay growth - excluding bonuses - was up from 2.9% in the previous period.It has not been as strong as 3.1% since the three months to January 2009 and has not been greater since 2008.The figures look less impressive when taking account of the effect of inflation - in real terms pay rose by just 0.7% over the period, though this was still the best since the end of 2016. ONS head of labour market David Freeman said: "People's regular monthly wage packets grew at their strongest rate i...
Abu Dhabi group delays stock offer for 25 percent of Cepsa due to market 'instability'

Abu Dhabi group delays stock offer for 25 percent of Cepsa due to market 'instability'

Business
Oct. 15 (UPI) -- The Abu Dhabi-based Mubadala group cited "markets instability" as it on Monday delayed selling a 25 percent stake in the Spain-based oil company Cepsa, a multinational that is highly exposed to crude oil prices -- and which coincidentally also suffered a refinery fire on Monday. "Mubadala has decided to delay the public offer for the sale of shares in progress ... as they consider that the instability suffered by the markets affects the valuation of the company," Cepsa said in a press release Monday about the interruption of plans to list in the Madrid stock exchange as soon as this week. "As a long-term investor, we will consider returning to the market when we believe conditions are favorable," said Mubadala CEO Musabbeh Al Kaabi. The company is highly exposed to crude ...
US retail giant Sears files for bankruptcy

US retail giant Sears files for bankruptcy

Business
US retail giant Sears has filed for bankruptcy after succumbing to huge debts and losses. The company, which is more than 100 years old, was once America's largest retailer but has been battered by fierce competition and the rise of internet shopping.Sears, which still has 886 stores across the US, was left fighting for its life ahead of a key $ 134m (£102m) debt repayment due at the start of this week.Court papers showed it had now filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, a process that allows indebted companies to restructure its debts.Sears began life as a mail order catalogue in the 1880s - a pioneering business that has been described as the Amazon of its day.It came to dominate US malls and at its peak sales were equivalent to 1% of US gross national product. It was over...
Purplebricks finds home in German market

Purplebricks finds home in German market

Business
Britain's biggest online estate agent is moving into Europe for the first time by acquiring a stake in its most prominent German counterpart. Sky ‎News has learnt that Purplebricks, which has a market value of more than £650m, will announce on Monday that it is to become a shareholder in Homeday through a joint venture with the German media giant Axel Springer.Sources said this weekend that the deal was likely to be structured as a 50-50 partnership between Purplebricks and Axel Springer, which is already a big investor in the British property group.The transaction will see the two companies ‎invest €25m (£22m) in order to purchase a 26% stake in Homeday, which has a 50% share of the German online estate agency market.Purplebricks and Axel Spring...
BSEE: One-third of Gulf oil output remains 'shut-in' two days after Michael

BSEE: One-third of Gulf oil output remains 'shut-in' two days after Michael

Business
Oct. 12 (UPI) -- Some hydrocarbon producers that evacuated facilities and suspended extraction in the Gulf of Mexico ahead of Hurricane Michael had not yet fully restarted operations as of noon on Friday. As much as 32 percent of the area's crude oil production and 13 percent of the natural gas production still "shut-in," a U.S. agency said Friday. The volumes indicated in the Friday report by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement corresponding to the 'shut-in' production were 550,313 barrels per day of crude oil and 334 million cubic feet per day of natural gas. As of 11:30 a.m. EST on Friday, personnel from only nine production platforms, or just over one percent of the total 687 manned platforms, remained evacuated. "The production percentages are calculated using informa...