BRIEFS

TRAVEL

TRAVEL

Webjet dips

Webjet's decision to raise its earnings guidance for the full year has failed to boost the confidence of investors who appear wary about a flat leisure travel market. Shares in Webjet fell as much as 5 per cent on Thursday after the online travel company posted a 4 per cent fall in net profit to $5.6 million for the first half.

LIBOR RIGGING

RBS fined

The Royal Bank of Scotland will pay fines totalling $US612 million ($596 million) to US and British regulators to settle allegations of Libor interest rate rigging. Royal Bank of Scotland, which is 81 per cent owned by the British government after being bailed out during the financial crisis, is the third bank to admit its part in the Libor affair after Barclays and UBS.

CONSTRUCTION

Leighton win

Leighton subsidiary John Holland has won a $186 million contract extension for work on a port being built for Rio Tinto's iron ore operations. John Holland is building the Cape Lambert Port B wharf in Western Australia's Pilbara region and will extend the wharf to include an additional two berths.

INVESTMENT

GPG sells out

Guinness Peat Group, the investment company liquidating its portfolio, has sold out of aluminium fabrication group Capral for $40.4 million. GPG has been selling assets in a plan to return capital to shareholders and aims to rebrand itself as its biggest asset, British threadmaker Coats.

CASINOS

Junkets probe

James Packer's Asian casino venture, Melco Crown Entertainment, played down reports of a junket crackdown in China and said it continued to be positive about the year ahead. Melco Crown reported profit was little changed at $US108 million ($104.5 million) in the fourth quarter, due to costs generated by its Philippines project. Media reports said China was planning a crackdown on junket operators who bring high rollers to Macau casinos and may also be linked to money-laundering.

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