Updates from Uber, Intu Properties and Caledonian Trust

The Dow Jones surges past the 18,000 barrier meanwhile Uber apologises for Sydney siege price hike

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savings, tax, stockmarket, pensions, cash, investment FTSE 100, uber intu propertiesLittle sign of a pre-Xmas surge for stocks. The FTSE 100 closed at 6,598.1, up just 21.4 points, on Tuesday. Tullow Oil was the biggest gainer, up 3.1% to 419p while Morrisons also put on weight, up 2.5% to 180.4p. Slipping southwards was Shire, slumping 2.8% to 4533p with households goods operator Reckitt Benckiser also suffering, down 2% to 5200p. Thornton shares melted on a new profits warning, down more than 22% to 92p.

The Dow Jones meanwhile managed to storm the 18,000 barrier, up 64.7 points to 18,024.1 helped by stronger US economic data - the US economy expanded 5% in the third quarter.

Christmas Eve is a subdued time of year for corporate news. Taxi booking operator Uber has apologised for hiking fares during the Sydney cafe siege tragedy last week. Those affected by the price hikes will be refunded.

"It's unfortunate that the perception is that Uber did something against the interests of the public," the company says. "We certainly did not intend to. We will learn from this incident and improve as a result of this lesson."

Recently Uber had to suspend Delhi operations following the arrest of a driver accused of raping a passenger. The company has promised to improve its screening policy.

Next,shopping centre operator Intu Properties (formerly Capital Shopping Centres Group) says it has exchanged contracts with an entity owned by a fund managed by Orion Capital Managers. The deal buys Puerto Venecia shopping centre and retail park in Zaragoza, Spain for €451 million.

The sum represents a net initial yield of 5.0% based on net rental income of €22.4 million. Eurofund, Intu's development partner in Spain, was involved in the development of this retail park and shopping centre.

A €225 million bridging loan has been obtained from HSBC, which Intu says can be exchanged for a five year term loan with the all-in cost of debt estimated to be around 3.5%.

Lastly, AIM-listedCaledonian Trust. The Group made a pre-tax profit of £164,000 in the year to 30 June 2014 compared with a loss of £62,000 last year. The profit per share was 1.39p and the NAV per share was 147.2p compared with a loss of 0.52p and 145.8p respectively last year.

Income from rent and service charges was £344,000 compared with £334,000 last year. There were no sales of investment properties in the year. Profit on the sale of development properties was £33,000.

"The Group's primary emphasis is now on development," says Caledonian, "including development to secure existing planning consents, and on the provision of infrastructure for development plots, and the marketing of house plots and houses."

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