Today's letter from the Editor
Today's Matrices
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Junior Quant Analyst - C++, Boost, Data Mining

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Junior Quant Analyst - C++, Boost...

Service Desk Analyst- (Desktop Support, Help desk)

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Service Desk Analyst- (Desktop Su...

Junior Quant Analyst (Machine Learning, SQL, Brokerage)

£30000 - £50000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Junior Quant Analyst (Machine Lea...

UNIX Application Support Analyst- Support, UNIX, London

£45000 - £55000 per annum: Harrington Starr: UNIX Application Support Analyst-...

The Business Matrix: Monday 23 December 2013

Sam Cam firm slips into red

Smythson, the leather goods and stationery brand that counts Samantha Cameron as a consultant, fell into the red as it invested in new stores. The firm, which opened a store in Hong Kong in June, left, reported a £1.6m loss for the year to April, down from a £1.4m profit the year before. Sales rose 3.65 per cent to £28.4m.

Qatar plans floats worth $14bn

Qatar is lining $14bn (£8.5bn) worth of company flotations over the next 10 years. The Gulf emirate yesterday announced plans for a £540m inital public offering of shares in Mesaieed Petrochemical Holdings, part of Qatar Petroleum, next month. It will be the first IPO on Qatar’s stock market, which was hard hit by the global financial crisis.

North-south divide as vacancies rise

Competition for jobs has fallen this year amid an increase in vacancies, although a north-south divide persists, according to a new report. The jobs website Adzuna.co.uk said it was 200 times more difficult to find work in Salford than in Cambridge. It said there were 760,000 advertised job vacancies last month.

Consumers cash in reward plans

Consumers are set to use £38.5bn worth of shopping vouchers, buy-one-get-one-free deals and credit card rewards this year, according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research. It found that this area accounted for £1 in every £25 spent, or £742 on average per shopper per year.

Crown backing for Banbury Gateway

The Crown Estate is putting £80m into Banbury Gateway fashion park, which is set to start development early next year. The group is buying the interest from LXB Retail Properties. M&S and Next have agreed to be core tenants.

Taxman loses out from Blockbuster

The taxman is set to lose £7m from the collapse of Blockbuster. HMRC lost £4.8m of tax revenues when the video-rental chain went into administration in January. It now stands to lose another £2.1m in VAT, national insurance and PAYE payments.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape