Updates from IAG, Lloyds and William Hill

Lloyds Bank is to re-start dividend payments meanwhile Iberia profits surge back to support IAG

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savings, tax, stockmarket, pensions, cash, investment FTSE 100 IAG william hill, lloydsThe FTSE 100 re-took Wednesday's losses yesterday, rising almost 15 points, ending at 6,949.7. Standard Chartered and Persimmon took the biggest rises, up 5.3% to 976p and 4.4% respectively. There was a 3.2% gain also for Kingfisher. A full-year profits slip and a fresh re-brand did not impress Reed Elsevier investors, with Reed slumping almost 5% to 1130p.

The Dow Jones flat-lined, sinking just 10 points to 18,214.4 as oil stocks came again under pressure with Caterpillar, ExxonMobil and Chevron taking heavy hits.

Let's take to the air first with BA and Iberia owner IAG. Fourth quarter operating profits surges to €260m (2013: operating profit of €113m) while revenues for the quarter jump 9.9% to €5,015m, up 5.8%.

The really big news for IAG though is the turnaround of Iberia: Iberia made an operating profit of €50m compared to an operating loss of €166m last year. British Airways' operating profit is upped to €1,215 million, from €762m last year.

"We achieved a sstrong unit cost performance," says boss Willie Walsh, "down 4.1%, through increased productivity, supplier cost savings and lower fuel unit costs. The latter was boosted by the introduction of more efficient aircraft into our fleet and lower fuel prices in the last quarter of the year."

Lloyds next. For the first time in six years Halifax-owner Lloyds is going to pay a dividend - 0.75p per share - worth around £535m in total. Underlying profits are up 26% to £7.8bn. Lloyds' pre-tax profits come in at £1.8bn compared to £415m this time last year.

Costs are down 2% to £9.4bn (cost base of £9.0bn excluding TSB). Impairment charges are cut 60% to £1.2bn while Lloyds' asset quality ratio improves 33 basis points to 0.24 per cent.

"These strong foundations," says Lloyds boss António Horta-Osório, "give us confidence in our prospects and our ability to achieve our strategic objectives over the next three years, despite uncertainties with regard to the political, regulatory, economic and competitive environment."

We end with a quick nip into the bookies. Full-year numbers for William Hill sees operating profit climbs 11% to £372.2m with net revenues increasing 8% to £1,699.3m.

The full year dividend climbs to 12.2 pence, up 5%. Hill claims more strong growth in Online Sportsbook with turnover up 28% while mobile wagering is up 55%, says the bookie.

"Online," says boss James Henderson, "has delivered 21% compound annual net revenue growth since 2009 and is competitively at the leading edge in this market."

CAGE Director:Jihadi John Was

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