The week's winners
Alea up 5.8%
Allianz up 1.6%

The week's winners Alea up 5.8%Allianz up 1.6%

The week's losersWellington down 6.9%Windsor down 4.8%Marks & Spencer is having a tough time this month. The retailer admitted that its sales were not good enough and perhaps this is why it was reticent to talk about how its financial services business is doing. Its chief financial officer, Alison Reed, said the company saw profits fall from £86m to £50m because of the launch of its &more card. It seems then that its insurance products, which include pet, motor, wedding, home, travel and car, were unable to pull it beyond its £86m benchmark. While its competitors are not exactly rubbing their hands they are having a snigger. Major rival Tesco said its success was down to giving customers what they want.A spokesman said it remained to be seen how competitive M&S remained in the future.Still on the home front, it appears that London companies are losing out to their European counterparts when it comes to strategic risk management, according to research from Marsh. Of the UK senior executives surveyed, the majority said that they did not have procedures in place to deal with operational and strategic risks. Funny then, that risks such as increased competition, adverse changes in customer demand and losing key staff to competitors have been responsible for most company failures of the 21st century. Still, not much has been done in the UK. While 71% of companies in the UK claim increased competition was a risk to their business only 41% said they had "robust mitigation plans" to deal with it. Meanwhile, half of European companies say they are able to deal with it without any major hiccups.