- Northumbrian Water said trading since April 1 has been in line with expectations.

Water and sewerage charges at the group's principal subsidiary have increased by 5.3% for 2010/11.

Operating costs for the 12 months to end-March 2011 are forecast to increase by around 4%.

The group said it continues to have a strong funding position with sufficient resources to meet all requirements to the end of 2011.

Discussions with the European Investment Bank for a new loan facility of £150m are at an advanced stage.

The group's cash position at June 30 was £200m. Net debt is expected to be around £2.3bn at March 2011 and gearing levels are not forecast to be materially different from the position reported in June.

Results for the six months ending September 30 will be announced on November 30.

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