Nils Pratley

Nils Pratley

    UK govt bails out bank

    You might have expected Northern Rock to sound apologetic as queues formed outside its branches and its website was overwhelmed. Here is a bank that lent aggressively and tried to grab a big share of the mortgage market. Now its business model has been exposed as fragile and its brand damaged, perhaps beyond repair.

    FTSE hits landmark 6 000

    The FTSE 100 (the Financial Times/London Stock Exchange list of the top 100 companies) spent much of last week above 6 000 points for the first time since March 8 2001, achieving the latest landmark in one of the most remarkable post-war stock market recoveries. It didn't quite last -- the closing level was 5 999,4.

    Marriage for 'beauty not money'

    SABMiller has won its fight to buy Bavaria, a Colombian-based brewer regarded as the last major prize in the global beer industry's pursuit of growth in South America. SAB's shares moved sharply higher as investors applauded an apparent bargain price of $7,8-billion, almost $1-billion below some market estimates of Bavaria's value.