WPP, the world's biggest advertising company, reported third-quarter sales that outperformed French rival Publicis Groupe, sending the stock to a 13-year high.
Revenue was up 5pc in the period. WPP credited the UK and the Americas for its growth and reiterated its annual target of more than 3pc. Chief executive officer Martin Sorrell is spending as much as £400m (€470m) this year acquiring digital-ad assets and operations in countries such as Turkey, Brazil, Vietnam and India to counter slower growth in much of Europe.
NESTLE CLOSES PLANT
FOOD giant Nestle will shut a frozen meals plant at its site north of Paris after sales were hit by a Europe-wide horse-meat scandal earlier in the year. "The closure is a direct consequence of the horse-meat crisis," a spokeswoman said.
She noted that sales of ready meals were down by a quarter from a year ago, after falling 40pc in the immediate aftermath of the scandal, making the Beauvais plant, which produces meals under the Maggi brand, unviable.
FRENCH JOBLESS BLOW
FRANCE'S jobless claims rose in September by the highest margin since the depths of the financial crisis in early 2009, hitting a new record and dealing a blow to President Francois Hollande's pledge to quickly reverse rising unemployment.
The number of people registered out of work in September rose by 60,000 to a new record of 3,295,700, a monthly increase of 1.9pc and an annual rise of 8.1pc.
CRUISE SHARES UP 6PC
ROYAL Caribbean Cruises has raised its full-year earnings forecast due to greater demand in Europe, signalling a revival in an industry hit by negative publicity from a series of mishaps including the sinking of the Costa Concordia.
Shares of the world's second-largest cruise operator rose 6pc after the company reported quarterly results that beat estimates.
JPMORGAN MAY DEAL
JPMORGAN Chase may be forced to make a deal with federal authorities in the US to avoid criminal prosecution over its handling of accounts of imprisoned swindler Bernie Madoff, 'The New York Times' reported.
In 2011, a civil lawsuit brought against JPMorgan and other banks by Irving Picard, the trustee seeking to recover money for Madoff victims, cited internal emails in alleging that bank employees ignored "red flags" of fraud, often to win more fees and commissions.