Tom Stevenson

Tom Stevenson is a North Africa reporter for Al Jazeera

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The EU is supporting a brutal military occupation in Western Sahara

We cannot tolerate this cruelty and injustice

Great Financial Disasters of Our Time: The Hoover Fiasco

IT SHOULD have been the marketing coup of 1992: the most audacious buy-one-get-two-free offer ever made. Michael Gilbey and Brian Webb, two ambitious marketing executives in Hoover's Merthyr Tydfil factory, believed their free flights brainchild would make their careers.

Green Budget: Economic forecast - Bullish growth forecast heightens rat e fears

The Chancellor illustrated his call for pay restraint yesterday by unexpectedly forecasting different growth rates for the economy next year. He said if salaries were bid up as they had been in the past, gross domestic product might grow by 2.25 per cent next year. With "wage responsibility", however, that growth rate might rise to 2.75 per cent.

OFT refers rights issue underwriting to MMC

The Office of Fair Trading dealt the City a severe blow yesterday after it referred the underwriting of rights issues to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission. Tom Stevenson, Financial Editor, reports on the latest move in a long- running battle between the OFT and the investing institutions.

Merrill snaps up MAM in unexpected pounds 3.1bn deal

The revolution in global financial markets took an unexpected step yesterday as Merrill Lynch agreed a pounds 3.1bn takeover of Britain's biggest fund manager, Mercury Asset Management.

The Queen of gold-rush City

The City of London looked its brash "loadsamoney" self again yesterday, after an unexpected takeover bid by an American bank handed three money managers riches beyond the dreams of avarice. Tom Stevenson watched the new money rolling in.

Investment Column: Sterling dents British Steel

British Steel is the ultimate cyclical stock, riding the twin roller-coasters of the economic cycle and the foreign exchange markets. The gyrations it experiences as a result have made the company a dismal long-term investment but a great opportunity for anyone who fancies they have a short-term economic or financial crystal ball.

Investment Column: Emap could hit problems

Its been a bit quieter at Emap since its recent boardroom spat, but things have been bubbling away in the background, as yesterday's pounds 85m acquisition of Macmillan Magazines' health services division indicated. Through the deal, Emap has inherited six well-known trade titles, including Nursing Times and Health Services Journal, and analysts are confident that Emap will be able to make cost-savings of up to pounds 1m on the business, which made operating profits of pounds 8.4m last year.

Investment Column: Cash pile is key factor at Unigate

Unigate has been a good investment over the past three years as shareholders have focused more on the steadily growing fresh foods side of the business and less on the slowly declining milk arm. Although the balance of those two has resulted in only gradually improving profits, the re-rating of the shares over the past three years has seen them double in value to yesterday's 600p, up 5p.

Standard Life set to take on banks with phone account

The competition for bank customers will intensify next year when Standard Life launches a telephone-based account to rival those offered by the high street banks, other insurers and new entrants like the supermarkets and Virgin. Tom Stevenson, Financial Editor, reports.
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