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    Nationwide warns of squeeze on household spending and tough times ahead as profits fall 10%

    Nationwide’s pre-tax profits dropped ten per cent, despite the company approving a record number of first-time buyer mortgages this year.The building society, Britain’s second biggest mortgage provider, approved 39,000 mortgages to first-time buyers in the six months ending September, up from 38,600 for the previous year.However, its profit declined to £626million, down from £696m for the same period last year when the firm benefitted from the £100m sale of a stake in Visa Europe. Profit decline: Nationwide’s pre-tax profits dropped ten per cent, despite the company approving a record number of first-time buyer mortgages this yearThis year’s profit included the ...

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    Troubled UK construction giant Carillion loses a third of its value after it admits it can't pay its debts and share price plunges 30%

    Troubled UK construction giant Carillion lost a third of its stock market value today after it warned on profits again and said it can't meet its loan payments.Shares in the Wolverhampton-based firm, which provides facilities management and construction services around the world, plunged nearly 50 per cent when the stock market opened - but then recovered to stand nearly 30 per cent down - as investors abandoned the crisis-hit company.The stock plunged 70 per cent in July on the back of a massive profit warning, but had recovered slightly in the autumn after it sold off parts of its business ...

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    Charity shops and antiques dealers enjoy a boost in trade as retail sales rise by more than expected in October

    Retail sales rose by a better-than-expected 0.3% last month, the Office for National Statistics revealed today.In beating forecasts of just a 0.1% rise, the news provides a small but welcome boost to the UK economy as we hit the crucial Christmas shopping season. In the retail sector as a whole, the volume of products snapped up by shoppers fell by 0.3 per cent when compared to October 2016 however, and for the three months to October sales dipped 0.9 per cent on a year ago. Dip: In the retail sector as a whole, the volume of products snapped up by shoppers fell ...

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    Gender gap pay battle unleashes at Easy Jet following appointment of new chief executive

     Easy Jet was attacked last night for paying more to its new inexperienced male chief executive than was paid to female predecessor Dame Carolyn McCall.As women campaigned on Equal Pay Day, the budget airline revealed that new chief Johan Lundgren will earn a higher salary than Dame Carolyn – one of Britain’s most sought-after bosses.Lundgren, who previously worked at Thompson owner TUI, will receive a basic salary of £740,000 despite never having held a role of comparable importance. Gender gap at Easy Jet exposed This is £36,000 more than McCall’s basic pay after her seven well-regarded years at the helm of the ...

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    Britain's care home sector in crisis as it faces £1.5bn funding shortfall

    Britain's care home industry is on the verge of a catastrophic funding crisis with dire warnings that the Government needs to urgently pump in an extra £1.5billion to stabilise the sector.Industry insiders told The Mail on Sunday the crunch may come within the next 18 months as the cost of operating homes escalates and care fees paid by local authorities continue to fall short.One of the industry’s biggest operators, Four Seasons, has been described by experts as ‘the canary in the coal mine’ as the cash crisis grows. Care crisis: Industry insiders said the crunch may come within the next ...

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    Michael Heseltine: Build a wealth fund for the UK to provide capital to back British industry

    Michael Heseltine has called for the creation of a sovereign wealth fund as part of a fundamental reappraisal of Britain’s industrial strategy.The Conservative grandee said a state-owned investment fund could provide ‘patient capital’ to back British industry and long-term infrastructure projects.He has put forward the idea in a 75-page response to the Government’s Industrial Strategy green paper. Strategy: Lord Heseltine is calling for ‘patient capital’ to help companies growLord Heseltine said such funds are already used by successful economies such as Norway – which set up a sovereign fund to invest its North Sea oil wealth – and by the US.A ...

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    I’m glad I’m not a banker any more, I don’t think they have behaved well: Sir Evelyn de Rothschild tells why he now prefers chocolate money

    Sir Evelyn de Rothschild’s latest business venture involves rows of bullion bars and stacks of financiers, as befits one of the foremost bankers of his generation. The unexpected part is, they are all made of chocolate.His shop, R Chocolate in Belgravia, is a chocoholic’s nirvana.The bullion bars are a bit like a posh Twix, consisting of all-butter shortbread with sea salt caramel on top, then coated with chocolate for £4 a pop, while the financiers are fruit and almond confections priced at £1 each.There are chocolate hampers, chocolate biscuits, hot chocolate drinks, iced chocolate drinks, chocolate bars and chocolate elephants ...

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    David Hockney makes an even bigger splash as sales jump to nearly £12m

    Revered: David Hockney’s sales were close to £12 million. Inset, A Bigger SplashHe is 80 years old but David Hockney – one of Britain’s best-known artists – is showing no signs of slowing down either creatively or financially.A sell-out exhibition of his paintings, drawings, prints, photography and videos spanning six decades at Tate Britain earlier this year received rave reviews.And accounts just filed for his company, David Hockney UK, for the year ending December 31, 2016, reveal booming sales of nearly £12million, up from £7.5million.Profits after tax more than doubled to £2.7million and the shareholders’ funds now stand at ...

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    Carney's deputy at Bank of England expects further interest rate hikes to tackle Brexit-fuelled rising inflation

    The Bank of England’s deputy governor has hinted that it could increase interest rates further in a bid to rein in inflation fuelled by Brexit.Ben Broadbent said that he anticipates a ‘couple’ more hikes to get inflation, which is currently at three per cent, back on track.His comments come just a day after the BoE increased interest rates for the first time in a decade from 0.25 per cent up to 0.5 per cent. Further increases: Ben Broadbent said that he anticipates a ‘couple’ more interest rate hikes to get inflation, which is currently at 3% back on trackHe told ...

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    What on earth is the Bank of England talking about? Our jargon-busting guide to what the Bank said... and what it actually meant

    The Bank of England has just decided to raise interest rates for the first time in over a decade.Immediately after making the announcement, it put out a 56-page report explaining how it came to its decision.It is absolutely riddled with convoluted jargon such as ‘non-financial investment-grade corporate bond purchases’, ‘limited spare capacity’ and the like.All this can make it sound pretty far removed from our day-to-day lives – and sometimes even from reality. Facing it head on: We tackle the Bank of England's jargon-riddled Inflation Report - and explain what it could mean for youExcept that it’s not.The decisions made by ...

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    Mark Carney and his Bank of England colleagues shouldn’t bottle out of a rate rise this week, says ALEX SEBASTIAN

    On Thursday the odds are in favour of us seeing the first interest rate rise in the United Kingdom since before the financial crisis of 2007 and 2008.Analysts have been putting the chances of a rate rise being announced this week at around 70 to 80 per cent, which leaves more room for doubt than there should be.The Bank of England’s monetary policy committee has a great opportunity to get something out of the way that has been looming over the United Kingdom economy for years, with minimal fallout if any. Mark Carney and the MPC are poised to enact ...

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    Government faces growing pressure to abandon possibility of hard Brexit amid fears that risk-averse companies are already halting investment programs

    Growing pressure: Theresa MayThe Government faces growing pressure to abandon any possibility of a hard Brexit amid fears that risk-averse companies are already halting investment programs.The influential EY Item Club said securing a transitional agreement to give firms a softer landing outside the EU was imperative.In a report released today, the forecasting group predicted business investment growth to drop by 1.5 per cent next year after an estimated 2.1 per cent rise in 2017.Mark Gregory, EY’s chief economist, said: ‘UK businesses are not investing enough either to capture the opportunities offered by global growth and technological change or to ...

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    Former Eton pupil named as mastermind behind alleged multi-million pound property development scam

    A former public schoolboy has been named as the alleged mastermind behind a multi-million pound property development fraud, according to High Court papers.Charles Cunningham, whose time at Eton overlapped with Prince William’s, has been identified in court papers as controlling a series of companies used to defraud Asian investors of millions of pounds by enticing them with UK developments that were never completed.The son of a City financier, Mr Cunningham, whose brother Rupert is friends with some of Prince Harry’s inner circle, lives in a large country estate in North Wales with his wife. The couple boast a who’s who ...

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    REVEALED: The top secret plan to 'reboot' Topshop with Sir Philip Green deeming the overhaul a 'bold move'

    Topshop’s newly-arrived boss Paul Price has put a secret plan into action in a bold attempt to overhaul the entire chain.Sources said the former Burberry executive’s surprise shake-up - dubbed Project Reboot - is being implemented immediately so it takes effect in plenty of time for Christmas.It is expected to send shockwaves through Topshop’s 300 stores which are fighting back against tough competition from high street rivals. Sources said key staff have been working on the operation throughout the night. Fashion makeover: Topshop’s suspender jeans could be for the chop (left) while the Merci T-shirt has been a top seller ...

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    The (very rude) confessions of the Brexit bad boy: Arron Banks reveals how he now set to make another fortune from diamonds

    Arron Banks, the ‘bad boy of Brexit’, notorious for putting millions of pounds of his own money behind Nigel Farage, thinks he is poised to make another fortune – from a new diamond venture.Pinning down Banks, insurance entrepreneur and Ukip donor extraordinaire, is a complicated dance. Our interview finally happens after months of negotiation and the cancelling of a planned meeting that had been arranged in a Mayfair private members’ club, when he was held up in traffic.When he finally talks, he is as keen to hold forth about his new venture into sparklers in Lesotho as about Brexit, or ...

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