Business

Elisabeth Murdoch will not join News Corporation board

 The daughter of Rupert Murdoch will not join the board of her father’s News Corporation conglomerate as had been expected, the company has announced. News Corp said Elisabeth Murdoch, 42, told its directors that it would be “inappropriate” to join the board. She was expected to join the News Corp board after it bought Shine Group, the UK television production firm she runs. In February, her father said he expected her to make the move after the £415m deal had been completed. However, in a statement, Viet Dinh, chairman of the nominating and corporate governance committee of the News Corporation board of directors, said Ms Murdoch had “suggested to the independent directors some weeks ago that she felt it would be inappropriate to include her nomination to the board of News Corp”. The statement went on: “The independent directors agreed that the previously planned nomination should be delayed. “Both Elisabeth and the board hope this decision reaffirms that News Corp aspires to the highest standards of corporate governance and will continue to act in the best interests of all stakeholders, be they shareholders, employees or the billions of consumers who News Corp content informs, entertains and sometimes provokes every year.” …

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Nick Leeson apologises to Barings’ boss for bank crash

The “rogue trader” Nick Leeson who brought down Barings Bank has for the first time made a heartfelt apology to his former boss. He told Peter Norris, now Chairman of Virgin Group Holdings, of his remorse after the two were brought together for a BBC radio programme. Mr Leeson brought down Barings Bank with losses of £827 million in 1995. He served more than three years in a Singapore prison for forging documents and deceiving the bank’s auditors. After hearing his apology, Mr Norris told him: “I think I wanted to punch your lights out.” Mr Leeson replied: “I wouldn’t have blamed you if you had.” Substantial losses The former trader was reunited with his boss and former colleagues at Barings for Radio 4’s The Reunion which looks back at the bank’s collapse. Continue reading the main story Mr Leeson was Barings’ star derivatives trader on the Singapore International Monetary Exchange and regularly reported huge profits. But he was losing Barings and their customers hundreds of millions of pounds. He was able to disguise the losses by keeping control over his own “back office” where trading accounts were reconciled. He set up a secret account with the number 88888, the …

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Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway sees profits jump

Billionaire Warren Buffett’s investment firm Berkshire Hathaway has reported a sharp rise in profits thanks in part to strong returns on derivative contracts. Net profits for the second quarter were $3.4bn (£2.1bn), a rise of 74% on the $2bn the company made a year earlier. Revenue grew to $38.3bn. The profits on derivatives helped offset insurance losses. Mr Buffett is the world’s third richest man, with an estimated fortune of about $50bn, according to Forbes. Berkshire Hathaway has sustained losses at its insurance businesses this year owing to the natural disasters in Japan and New Zealand.

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