Friday 9 December 2016

What it says in the papers: business pages

Published 11/05/2016 | 07:00

Here are the main business stories from this morning's papers:

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Irish Independent

* Black market trading is estimated to have cost the economy close to €2.5bn last year.

Almost €800m of that is a direct loss to the Exchequer, according to a report by consultants Grant Thornton.

* Virgin Media has suffered a 14pc fall in its Irish TV customer base over the last year, new accounts show.

The operator, which rebranded from UPC last year, lost 53,900 television customers in the last 12 months as stiff competition from Sky, Eir and Saorview continue to bite.

* Bank of Ireland has been accused of a "cynical attempt" to exploit a non-existent tax loophole after it lost a £27m tax avoidance case in the UK.

The case dates back to 2003 and involved a UK subsidiary, the former building society, Bristol & West (B&W).

The Irish Times

* The US may be added to a tax haven "blacklist" that is being drawn up by the European Commission with a Parliament report arguing some states are behaving like tax havens.

According to a report in The Irish Times, the report is a sign of growing tensions between the EU and the US and it comes ahead of the Parliament's special committee on taxation.

* Building materials firm Grafton Group is open to further Dutch acquisitions following its successful entry into the market last year.

Sales for the first four months of the year at the group increased by 13.2pc to £790m, which was boosted by acquisitions.

* A shareholder group in Paddy Power is calling on shareholders in the newly formed Paddy Power Betfair shareholders to object against former chief executive Andy McCue's pay at the firm's AGM next week.

Mr McCue was paid €3.7m in salary and benefits and according to a report in The Irish Times, the shareholder group deemed the pay as excessive.

Irish Examiner

* A British exit from the EU (Brexit) could spell a 20pc dive in the value of the sterling, which would further damage the country's outlook.

According to the UK's National Institute of Economic and Social Research (Niesr) a Brexit would also cause the British economy to grow at a slower pace than previously expected.

* Irish homebuilder Cairn Homes could benefit from reduced mortgage rates as it continues to bring more development sites on stream.

According to a report in the Irish Examiner, the company has added a further four sites to its direct ownership following their acquisition under Project Clear.

* Profits at Newry-based veterinary pharmaceutical company Norbrook soared by 48pc last year to €41m.

According to a report in the Irish Examiner, revenues at the group increased by 8.5pc to £215..7m

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