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The Business Matrix: Tuesday 21 August 2012

Watchdog to look at Rank Gala deal

The Competition Commission is to review Rank's proposed acquisition of a rival casinos business after a referral by the consumer watchdog, the Office of Fair Trading, which is concerned the tie-up will reduce competition. Rank in May agreed to buy the casino business of Gala Coral.

Olympics fail to bother Bovis

Bovis Homes shrugged off worries over an Olympic slowdown for housebuilders yesterday as the firm doubled profits and dividends in the first half of the year. The company's pre-tax profits rose to £16.2m. Bovis investors also welcomed the doubling of the interim dividend to 3p.

Amlin in black on fewer disasters

Lloyd's of London insurer Amlin bounced back into profit thanks to fewer catastrophes this year than last and also revealed it paid tax at a rate of barely more than 8 per cent. For the six months to June it made a profit of £184.5m, compared with a loss last time around of £192.3m.

CME to run new market in London

The world's largest futures exchange, CME, has applied to run a new European derivatives market from London. That will pitch it against the existing big players in the European derivatives market, London-based Liffe, and Eurex, the Frankfurt-based exchange.

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Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam