Business Diary: Medieval art show courtesy of Studs

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The Independent Online

We are looking forward to a new exhibition that opens tomorrow at the British Museum: Treasures of Heaven – Saints, Relics and Devotion in Medieval Europe. It is sponsored by John Studzinski, the former head of investment banking at HSBC who is now a big cheese at Blackstone, the private equity giant. Fittingly, "Studs", as his friends call him, is renowned for his devotion to both art andphilanthropy and regarded as something of a saint for hischarity work. He's definitely not a relic though, even one of the pre-credit crisis age.



Greeks 'work the hardest in Europe'

Poor old Angela Merkel, who has to sell the latest Greek bail-out to a sceptical German electorate. Still, here's some data that might just help correct the myth that hard-workingGermans are being asked to shell out for their lazy Greek counterparts. Natixis, the French banking group, has used official EU statistics to conduct an interesting study of European working practices. Guess who works the hardest, with an average of 2,119 hours a year? That's right, the Greeks. Bottom of the table? Right again – it's the Germans, averaging just 1,390 hours a year.



Bankers score big in golf tournament

Never mind the US Open – here's the golfing event of the year. It's the sixth annual Banks and Brokers Golf Championship, which is sponsorted by IG Markets. As if our City friends weren't sufficiently pampered already, teams will compete at a series of qualifying tournaments and those who make the grand final get an all-expenses paid trip to Spain to battle it out. The winners get another posh trip, this time to a golfing resort in Northern Ireland. Teams already signed up include ICAP, MF Global, BGC Partners, Barclays Capital and HSBC. It's a tough life in the City.



Virgin's Branson is all a twitter

Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Money naturally wants to be taken seriously as it contemplates bidding for Northern Rock and the 600 branches put up for sale by Lloyds Banking Group. So how, after months of fevered speculation, did Sir Richard finally announce that he was definitely interested in these prime UK banking assets? On Twitter, of course.

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

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