Updates from Lloyds and Hammerson

The FTSE 100 climbed just five points on Thursday, ending the day at 6,654.4. Miner Rio Tinto was the Board's biggest riser, up +3.89% while house builder Persimmon fell hardest, down -6.10% to 1170p on news the Bank of England is to slash a scheme to push mortgage lending.

The Dow Jones ended Thursday just shy of a 25-point rise, finishing at 16,097.
A quiet end to the week on the corporate numbers front. We start with retail property player Hammerson which has signed, it says, an agreement with nine US institutions for the placement of $443 million of 7, 10 and 12 year notes.

The attractiveness of this funding opportunity was enhanced, claims Hammerson, "by the ability of the US investors to defer closing, enabling Hammerson to maximise the benefit from low floating rates on its banking facilities."

"This financing," says CFO Timon Drakesmith, "locks in long-dated funding with appealing coupons, whilst the flexible terms allow us to retain the immediate benefits of low floating rates."

Next, support services company Carillion has been selected by Sunderland City Council as the preferred bidder to form a strategic partnership to deliver property services to undertake the City's regeneration programme, worth £100m over the first eight years.

Carillion claims, potentially, the contract could be worth up to £800 million over 20 years. However the move will not be supported by the GMB union which urged Sunderland not to use Carillion on the grounds of blacklisting concerns.

"We look forward," says Carillion chief exec Richard Howson, "to working with Sunderland City Council and to engaging with local communities and businesses to deliver the Council's vision for the City, which will bring major benefits to the people of Sunderland and act as a catalyst for further inward investment."

Finally, Lloyds has announced the appointment of Juan Colombás as an exec director with effect from 29 November 2013. It's also thought that Lloyds is close to appointing Lord Norman Blackwell, chairman of the Scottish Widows subsidiary, as its new chairman.

The current chairman, Sir Winfried Bischoff, retires next year. Meanwhile Bischoff welcomed the new recruit.

"Juan has significant banking and risk management experience. He has served as the Group's Chief Risk Officer and a member of the Group Executive Committee since January 2011. Juan is a valuable addition to the Board and we look forward to working with him."