James Moore: Sheriff Lawsky is back in town to take on his old enemy, Standard Chartered

Outlook Benjamin Lawsky was  described as “Wall Street’s toughest cop” by a US political magazine recently. It seems he’s out to prove it. Guess which bank will be the vehicle for that? Yes, Standard Chartered is on the naughty step again.

The new prime minister has laid out an ambitious agenda for his first months in office, promising a sweeping overhaul of the electoral and constitutional system to give Italy more stable governments in future

A study of past economic cycles suggests that we aren’t far away from the next downturn

Economic View: Those of us who thought that the amplitude of cycles was diminishing were proved spectacularly wrong

James Moore: Moody’s gets into the holiday spirit with downgrade

Outlook Talking about being late to parties, credit ratings agencies have made an art form of it. The don’t usually arrive until after everyone has gone home and the cleaners have started to make an attack on the mess.

James Moore: Urban Exposure’s time to shine will soon come

Outlook If you’re late to a party there’s always the risk that all the good booze will have been drunk by the time you get there.

James Moore: Standard Life’s conservative view wins friends south of the border

Outlook “In making our comments, we were not seeking to make a political comment.” If he can make more disingenuous statements like that with a straight face, then a political career may be ahead for David Nish, the chief executive of Standard Life.

Chris Blackhurst: Mike Ashley is not to the City’s tastes but those who scorn him would do better to follow his example

Midweek View: My respect for Mr Ashley is not just that he stopped my table-tennis-loving nine-year-old having a tantrum

Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne

David Blanchflower: Britain has taken longer to recover from recession than at any time since the South Sea Bubble

The Coalition’s triumphalism over restoring output to its starting  level is totally misplaced

New kids on the media block still need to add the old school ruthlessness of their predecessors

Twitter and Facebook both have compelling promise, if they can behave like grown-up companies

Alex Salmond and Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon present the White Paper for Scottish independence in November 2013 in Glasgow

Independence and a currency union may not be compatible for Scotland

My week: Mr Salmond’s plan is to share the pound in a sterling zone with the rest of the UK, but this idea is not proving popular in the Treasury

At least some gender battles are won. Race is the elephant in the boardroom

Westminster Outlook Ruth Cairnie should be an excellent addition to the board of Rolls-Royce. She is one of the foremost strategists in the City, having plotted Royal Dutch Shell’s advances for three years as vice-president for planning. Then there is this theoretical physicist’s fierce intellect: at Cambridge University, Mrs Cairnie won the Mayhew Prize, awarded to the student “of the greatest merit” in applied mathematics. Finally, she brings breadth of experience: not just an oil executive, Mrs Cairnie serves on the boards of Associated British Foods and Keller Ground Engineering.

Ben Chu: Applus floating into trouble

Outlook Shares in Applus slumped around 17 per cent this week, only two months after the services group floated in Spain. The online travel company eDreams has dropped 55 per cent since going public in April.

Ben Chu: Only structural reform will clean up our unsound banking system

Outlook John Maynard Keynes nailed it 83 years ago. As the great economist wrote: “A sound banker, alas, is not one who foresees danger and avoids it but one who, when he is ruined, is ruined in a conventional way along with his fellows, so that no one can really blame him.”

Hamish McRae: US Inc is pretty chipper, but there will be a correction to the stock market before too long

Economic View: Don’t you love the way in the  US people talk of earnings, whereas we here talk of profits?

James Moore: Impressive Next leads the fashion pack

Outlook They say youth will have its day. Next adhered to that principle when it appointed Simon – now Lord – Wolfson as chief executive at the tender age of 33, a decision that has worked out rather well for the company.

News
Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo!
Yahoo owns a 22.5% stake in Alibaba after making a $1bn investment- but IPO could be a make or break moment for Mayer, says Oscar Williams Grut
News
A pedestrian walks past Alibaba.com advertising in Hong Kong.
The countdown for Alibaba's New York float has begun and the stage is set for what could be the biggest initial public offering of all-time. Here is what you need to know.
News
Video: The Independent's Alex Lawson provides a run-down of the day's major news from the City
News
Jack Ma founded Alibaba in 1999 with a website offering 22 items. It now accounts for 70 per cent of all packages delivered in China
E-commerce behemoth on track to become the biggest IPO in history
News
Americans are less fussy when it comes to shareholder rights and Alibaba is taking advantage to ensure Jack Ma remains in the driving seat, writes Anthony Hilton
News
A Yes vote does not deliver independence; it delivers a negotiation to secure the terms of independence. But once politicians start negotiating, anything can happen.
News
VIDEO : Get the latest business news from our City staff
News
While the Canadian province eventually voted No, the years of uncertainty caused banks to move elsewhere and damaged GDP. Mark McSherry ponders a similar fate for Scotland
News
Phones 4U stores will remain closed while talks continue with parties interested in acquiring the business
The mobile phone retailer’s demise is a tragedy for its employees, but just business sense for those responsible, Alex Lawson and Simon Read report
News
The Deputy First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon (right), is joined by the leader of Welsh nationalist party Plaid Cymru Leanne Wood (centre) as they pass a bookmakers during a walk-about to meet the Scottish electorate
There’s a lot riding on Thursday’s poll, not least among bookmakers and punters such as Russell Lynch , who would like a referendum that makes them a little richer
News
Latest figures say export growth in Britain has slowed to its lowest point since April, while factory output is at its weakest since the start of 2013
The underlying trend in  factory output is its weakest since the start of 2003, writes David Blanchflower
News
Alex Salmond and the nationalists reject claims that Scotland's economy would suffer if the UK broke up
Ben Chu looks at what could happen if the 'yes' campaign triumphs in next week’s independence referendum
News
Emissions policies will raise the cost of steel making
As Europe pursues anti-pollution measures, steel producers are warning that steeper costs will drive customers away, writes Thomas Biesheuvel
News
Such an outcome would be the worst result for Scotland, says Mark Leftly
News
Samuel L Jackson at the annual event
The company donates its global revenues on the day to hundreds of charities
News
Véronique Laury takes over as Kingfisher’s chief executive from Sir Ian Cheshire in January
More than half the UK population is female but she will become only the fifth FTSE 100 female chief executive, says Laura Chesters
News
Whatever the outcome of the referendum north of the border, the basic structure of both the Scottish and English economies remains the same
The less-clear message is that holders of Scottish assets are wary of independence, writes Hamish McRae
News
The new iPhone 6 is displayed during an Apple special event in Cupertino, California.
Tim Cook, Rupert Murdoch and Arianna Huffington were among those to voice their thoughts
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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
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week