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The Business Matrix: Saturday 19 April 2014

Celebrations for John Lewis 150th

Department store John Lewis is celebrating its 150th anniversary with a series of events across its 41 UK shops. They include an invite to shoppers to its Oxford Street roof garden and an interactive exhibition detailing its growth from the opening of a draper’s shop in May 1864.

Diplomacy leads to shares bump

Shares in Russia recorded the biggest rise in three weeks after the United States, Russia, Ukraine and the EU all agreed  measures to defuse the crisis in Ukraine, following extended talks in Geneva. Moscow’s Micex index rose 2.1 per cent and the Ukrainian equities index ticked up 0.5 per cent.

Italy pushes ECB over low inflation

Italy’s central bank yesterday warned it was “essential” the European Central Bank ensures that inflation does not remain too low for too long in the region, where it fell to 0.5 per cent in March. “It remains essential to counter an excessive fall in inflation in the eurozone,” the Bank of Italy said.

Monte Paschi to repay state aid

The world’s oldest bank, Italy’s Monte Paschi, hopes to raise €5bn(£4.1bn) from investors to repay state aid after a bailout last year. The country’s third-  biggest bank, mired in legal probes over alleged misconduct by former managers, is cutting jobs and selling assets to return to profit by next year.

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