Business Diary: Banks' timing is impeccable

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The Independent Online

Never let it be said that the banks do not have a sense of good timing. With the bosses of Barclays, RBS, Lloyds and HSBC up for a grilling at the Treasury Select Committee on Wednesday afternoon, it would not have been wise to give MPs any extra ammunition with which to beat them over the head. Is that why Lloyds and RBS waited until yesterday to announce hundreds more job cuts? And with Barclays having completed a smaller cull in the US on Wednesday night, should HSBC staff be nervous?

Barclays stafftake a bath

Still on the banks, here's a surprise for those who say there's no justice. While Barclays' Bob Diamond so busy at the TSC, there was a spot of trouble back at the ranch. And now pictures of that trouble are speeding round the internet for your enjoyment: they feature a

Barclays trading floor,complete with some rather soggy looking traders, getting soaked by what looks like the failure of the office sprinkler system.

Businesses get lost in translation

We are indebted to Lingo24 for making us smile with a spot of self-promotion. It's a business translation service you see, and to prove that such a service is necessary, it has compiled a list of the worst linguistic confusions in the business world. We particularly like the Swedish vacuum maker Electrolux's attempts to crack the US market with this slogan: "Nothing sucks like an Electrolux". But it is not as good as brewing giant Coors' attempt to translate its "Turn it loose" catchphrase for the Spanish market: somehow it came out as "Suffer from diarrhoea".

BP man goes for new PR adviser

No surprise to see that Vallares, Tony Hayward's new oil investment venture, has picked Finsbury as its public relations adviser. Finsbury did the PR for Vallar, the forerunner to Vallares, and knows a thing or two about floats in the natural resources sector – it's just worked on the Glencore IPO. Moreover, Hayward was never likely to hire Brunswick, Finsbury's big rival. It was the retained agency at BP last year, when Hayward spent months of his life being savaged over his handling of the Deepwater Horizon disaster.