Saturday 24 August 2019

What it says in the papers: business pages

Michael Cogley

Here are the business stories you need to know about this morning.

Irish Independent

* Bank of Ireland will restrict cash withdrawals and lodgements in its branches, in a move aimed at forcing customers to use electronic banking.

Customers will no longer be allowed to withdraw cash with the help of a teller in a branch unless the amount is more than €700, the Irish Independent has learned.

And the bank is also limiting cash deposits and cheque lodgements made with the assistance of a staff member to amounts over €3,000. Any face-to-face transactions outside these amounts will be banned.

* Pre-tax profits at the main Northern Ireland and British arm of Irish-owned retail giant, Dunnes Stores last year fell by 18pc to £11.3m (€15.9m) after a further slide in revenues.

According to accounts just lodged by Dunnes Stores (Bangor) Ltd to Companies House in the UK, revenues fell from £140.52m to £136.9m in the 12 months to the end of January 31 of this year. Revenues at the firm in 2012 had totalled £157m and the dip in revenues comes against the background of reports earlier this year that Dunnes was planning a major UK expansion eyeing the opening of up to 40 new stores there.

The figures show the firm paid dividends of £764,000 last year to Irish-based parent, Dunnes Stores (Henry Street) and a dividend payout of £476,000 in the prior year.

* The strength of the dollar will continue to adversely impact margins at Primark in the current half of its new financial year, owner Associated British Foods (ABF) has warned.

Primark, which is headquartered in Dublin and trades as Penneys here, said that much of its merchandise is priced in US dollars at source. The currency has significantly appreciated against the euro in particular.

"However, more than half of the potential impact has been successfully mitigated by our buying teams as they have placed orders for next year," said AFB yesterday as it released full-year results for the 52 weeks to September 12.

The Irish Times

* The Revenue Commissioners have revealed that the jump in corporation tax repayments in the month of October wasn't a once off, but was due to to strong trading conditions.

Revenue received €800m more than expected for the month of October and the government is now anticipating another €2bn in corporation tax repayments before year end.

Should the government receive what they expect it would bring the income from the tax back to pre-crisis levels.

* Tánaiste Joan Burton says that Budget 2016 will provide up to six times the impact as last year's budget to low earners.

Based on the ESRI model, it suggests that the average home will be up €14.30 per week while unemployed singles and couples will experience a rise of in the region of 1pc.

The assessment shows that new social welfare measures will benefit the two lowest income quintiles and child expenditure.

* Only 5,400 bank account holders across Ireland changed their bank in the first half of the year according to a new report from the Central Bank.

The results suggest that banks may be able to impose higher fees and additional charges without feeling the response of migration.

Meanwhile more than 40,000 complaints were made by current account holders in the 12 month period that ended in June.

Irish Examiner

* The government looks set to go on a spending spree over the Christmas period or face the risk of encountering EU spending controls.

As a result of an increase in tax income from corporations the government now has an extra €3bn more than expected come the close of the year.

Analysts are now saying that the government will have to begin working speedily to try and spend the additional money before year end.

* The takeover of Red Arrow Products is expected to be formally completed by Kerry Group in early December.

Red Arrow, which is a natural smoke flavours and savoury grill flavours firm was acquired last month for a combined fee of €654m.

The deal represented the biggest of three acquisitions made by Kerry, accounting for two thirds of the overall consideration.

* Primark, the Dublin-headquartered  discount clothing retailer, saw its revenue grow by 13pc in the year that ended in September.

Its parent company, Associated British Foods (ABF), reported revenues of £12.8bn (€18bn) for the year which represented a raise of 2pc on a constant currency basis.

ABF chairman, Charles Sinclair, warned that the weakening of the euro would have a significant impact on the results for the coming year.

Online Editors

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