Business Diary: Osborne fails to lead by example

George Osborne, the Chancellor, ought to do a little more practising what he preaches. He is full of the need for austerity measures, promising billions of pounds of cuts in public spending. He expects colleagues to set an example – ministers have been told to travel using second-class train tickets whenever possible. And he has even started lecturing other countries on cuts, warning about high budget deficits around the world when he arrived at the G20 meeting of finance ministers in Korea yesterday. So how did Osborne get to Korea? By business class flight, obviously.

BP picks and chooses

BP's website includes a useful little section featuring cuttings from the media about different aspects of its activities. Still, anyone expecting to find examples of the fulsome coverage of its disastrous Deepwater Horizon spill is going to be more than a little disappointed. The site carries just one article about the crisis, a lengthy piece from The Washington Post explaining how the oil company deserves great credit for its response. It's what you might call judicious editing.

The Body backs British business

Elle Macpherson's business career has gone from strength to strength since she quit the day job as a supermodel. Now she's teamed up with Barclays Bank – a case of beauty and the beast? – to promote Take One Small Step. It's a competition to find Britain's best new business ideas with a prize for the winner of £50,000. Take a look at the shortlist of 30 at www.takeonesmallstep.co.uk.

The story we all want to read

So what will be the top business book of 2010? Well, Lord Sugar and Donald Trump both have titles coming out, which should tell you everything you need to know about becoming a business tycoon. Our betting, however, is that both men will be outsold by Aleksandr Orlov, the much-loved (by some) Russian meerkat who stars in those comparethemarket.com adverts. Random House is promising us his autobiography this autumn.

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

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