Mark Leftly: The Tories' handling of data protection undermines a key UK industry

Westminster Outlook The Tories were not happy with Jane Frost. In March, they said she had made "unfounded and baseless accusations regarding ethics" in an article in our Sunday sister title. These accusations were about the integrity of Conservative Party research, an issue that was overlooked in the build-up to yesterday's local and European elections.

Royal Mail returns the criticism to sender

Westminster Outlook Selling shares in a service of national importance was always going to have some unpredictable outcomes. Already, the Government has been accused of undervaluing Royal Mail by about £1bn when it was floated in October, prompting fierce criticism from MPs and the National Audit Office. The Business Secretary Vince Cable and the Conservative sent to keep a close watch on him, Michael Fallon, probably expected those attacks. Harder to anticipate was that they would be the victims of a reverse shareholder spring yesterday at Royal Mail's debut full-year results as a listed business.

A deal to sharpen talons at the Bank of England

Outlook If the hawks on the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee needed any more ammo for their calls for a return to normality on interest rates, a deal emerged yesterday for them to lock and load. A City office block a couple of hundred yards down the road is being put up for sale by a bunch of private equity tycoons for £60m more than they paid for it just 18 months ago.

Putin's deal brings peace to the East, pain for the West

Outlook President Vladimir Putin's ability to outfox never ends. Just as we in the EU scurry about seeking alternatives to Russian gas in a vain attempt to weaken his political muscle, he stitches up a deal to supply China with an almost identical amount that he sends our way. So, for every euro of foreign currency he loses from us, he'll gain the equivalent in yuan. No problem.

Shoppers are flocking to spend their money, the pound is soaring – and the Government is counting its blessings

Economic View: If you want to know what's really happening with the economy look at what people do, not what they say

A waste of energy as Labour throws away its election advantage

Outlook Such is Labour's incompetence ahead of today's polls that Ed Miliband's coup on energy price caps is long forgotten by most voters.

The mega-deal is back – and that may not be good news for Vodafone

Outlook It was only a few months ago that Vodafone was the toast of the City after stuffing investors' pockets with billions of dollars from the sale of its shareholding in Verizon Wireless in the US.

Its reputation is the one thing BP just can't clean up

Outlook The BP oil that spewed from the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico might have been cleared from the region's beaches, waters and wildlife. But still it sticks to BP.

Mark Carney must cool off an overheating housing market

Outlook Property is once again the hot investment commodity, as results from the buy-to-let lender Paragon clearly demonstrated. First-half profits grew by a fifth and the chief executive reckons lending could more than double in the second half. Clients borrowed £269.3m in the first six months of the company's year, and with a pipeline of £348m, it would be a surprise if his prediction doesn't prove accurate.

Topshop owner Sir Philip Green and Kate Moss

Ten years ago, Philip Green walked away from his bid for M&S – and it's been going backwards ever since

Midweek View: It sits there, like a giant bloated beast, unable to swish its tail and crush the faster, terrier-like opposition

Jim Armitage: Malaysia Airlines handled the Flight 370 tragedy dismally. Now it lacks the will to rescue the company's finances

Global Outlook Conspiracy theorists have 1,001 fantastical tales about what really happened to Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. I heard one last night claiming it was "undeniable" the Americans shot it down, suspecting it was planning to crash land on the jet-fuel tanks at their military base on Diego Garcia. That's why there's been an Obama-ordered media blackout on the whole episode, apparently. Perhaps. Or maybe it's on the moon with Adolf Hitler and a journalist from the Sunday Sport.

Can you mix business with pleasure? Matt Gingell explores
The central banks have printed shed-loads of money and it has to go somewhere, but the 'fear index' is creeping up, writes Hamish McRae
Bailey has little experience of actually running a company - and there is a world of difference between being a “chief creative officer” and a chief executive- no doubt shareholders are unhappy
Andrew Miller’s £1.4m bonus reflected the sale of Auto Trader
As the owner of The Guardian overcomes the decline of print with strong digital revenues, its chief executive tells Gideon Spanier how it is adapting to the new age of publishing
The oil giant was overtaken by Wal-Mart as the world's biggest revenue earner, as Mark McSherry reports, 27 other UK firms made it to the Fortune Global 500 list of biggest companies
Never mind the lack of dialogue and pointless explosions. You'd be a fool to underestimate Michael Bay, because if there's one thing he knows, it's how to make money by heading east, says Maria Tadeo
Models present creations for fashion house Gucci as part of the spring/summer 2014 ready-to-wear collections
The US has a taste for European luxury goods, as Francois Henri Pinault tells Laura Chesters, and labels like Mulberry and Burberry are betting their shirts on it
Team Tinkoff Saxo during a training session in Leeds ahead of Saturday’s start of the Tour de France
Inspired by the Olympic and road-race success, Britain has fallen in love with cycling. Retailers and sponsors are forming their own peloton, but Jamie Dunkley asks: will the phenomenon ride and ride?
Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England
Earnings are 8% lower than before the financial crisis. This is an odd definition of ‘normal’, says Ben Chu
Some payday lender customers rack up debts with several firms
Consumer credit is certainly not disappearing any time soon- surely that makes it more vital than ever that senior people involved are questioned rigorously in public
Out in the big wide world Mothercare is doing well, but the UK operation has significant problems
Britain's new parents may shop elsewhere these days, but the nation's biggest babywear retailer is not desperate enough to accept a tax-dubious US bid, writes Simon Neville
GlaxoSmithKline Chinese headquarters

As a sex video smears the pharmaceutical giant's China boss, Jim Armitage reports on how its private investigator voiced concerns about new secrecy rules weeks before his arrest.

Benjamin Lawsky

Benjamin Lawsky has worked hard to earn his moniker, the man who makes the banks tremble, writes Jim Armitage

US President Barack Obama delivers a speech at the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels
Business editor James Ashton shares his top stories of the week
Lionel Messi celebrates his second goal for Argentina
Argentina due to make its next interest repayment on bonds as default looms large
David Higgins, at the HS2 offices in Victoria, has a track record on delivering expensive, controversial projects
The chairman of HS2 wants to speed up its arrival in the North and tells Chris Blackhurst the public will get on board
An effigy of Justice Secretary Chris Grayling is held up by National Association of Probation Officers protestors outside the Houses of Parliament
Despite an overall cost of £8bn to reorganise the probation service, Mark Leftly reveals that the Justice Secretary Chris Grayling is determined to ignore the critics and push ahead with his plans
The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee has zero evidence to support this idea, says David Blanchflower
Traders at work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
Governments need a long period of very low rates to correct the still-overstretched balance sheets, writes Hamish McRae
Wonga adverts feature puppet pensioners
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Day In a Page

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice
Hollywood targets Asian audiences as US films enjoy record-breaking run at Chinese box office

Hollywood targets Asian audiences

The world's second biggest movie market is fast becoming the Hollywood studios' most crucial
Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app'

Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child
Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

Is it time to ditch autocorrect?

Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
10 best girls' summer dresses

Frock chick: 10 best girls' summer dresses

Get them ready for the holidays with these cool and pretty options 
Westminster’s dark secret: Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together

Westminster’s dark secret

Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Dulce et decorum est - a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Dulce et decorum est: a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality
Google tells popular music website to censor album cover art in 'sexually explicit content' ban

Naked censorship?

The strange case of Google, the music website and the nudity take-down requests
Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

As England take on India at Trent Bridge, here is our pick of the high-performing bats to help you up your run-count this summer 
Brazil vs Germany World Cup 2014 comment: David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

Captain appears to give up as shocking 7-1 World Cup semi-final defeat threatens ramifications in Brazil