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Desmond increases his stake in INM

BILLIONAIRE investor Dermot Desmond has raised his stake in Independent News & Media, according to a stock exchange filing issued last night. Mr Desmond's investment vehicle IIU Nominees said it has raised its stake in the publisher of this newspaper to 4.24pc from 3.9pc.

The investment vehicle said last August that it had raised its stake in INM beyond the 3pc mark for the first time. IIU now owns 21.3 million shares in the company, according to yesterday's filing.

UK pension funds' negative return in '11


The average UK pension fund booked a negative annual return for the first time since 2008 last year, nudged into the red by a marked rise in stock market volatility, an early survey of the industry showed. Returns were minus 0.9pc for the year, BNY Mellon estimated, due to a negative return of 4.8pc during the third quarter. All other quarters of the year saw slightly positive returns.

Petroplus has all credit lines frozen


The plight of Swiss oil refiner Petroplus worsened yesterday as lenders extended the freeze on its borrowing to all credit lines, on top of $1bn (€781m) choked off last week. The company's shares tumbled some 23pc following the news as doubts grew about its ability to keep operating. The company said it would hold another meeting with banks in coming days.

Shell calls end to pension scheme


Shell is closing its UK final salary pension scheme to new workers from next year, bringing down the curtain on the last such retirement scheme offered by a FTSE 100 firm. The move ends an era in which workers could expect a set income when they became too old to work, as their retirement income was calculated as a percentage of the last working year of pay.

More Germans working into 50s


The number of Germans working past the age of 50 is at its highest level since record-keeping began in 2000, Frankfurter 'Allgemeine Zeitung' reported in a preview of an article to be published today, citing the federal employment agency.

Irish Independent