Business Diary: Red faces over Lord Browne

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Glencore, the commodities trader that announced its record-breaking flotation yesterday, has Finsbury doing its PR. It is run by Roland Rudd, who is a close friend of Robert Peston, the BBC's Business Editor. So, when Peston revealed yesterday that Glencore had appointed ex-BP boss Lord Browne as its chairman, the world assumed he knew what he was talking about. Some surprise then when Glencore announced several hours later that Simon Murray was its new chairman. "OMG" Peston told the world via Twitter.



So much for the austerity budget

Looking for a new job? Know your way round Facebook, Twitter and the rest? If so, we've got just the opportunity for you. The Cabinet Office needs an executive director of digital. The job, a new role, involves "sitting at the heart of the government's radical public sector reform process" and implementing the Coalition's "digital strategy". If that sounds like your kind of thing, you'll be pleased to hear the salary is £142,000 a year. These austerity cuts are really beginning to bite in Whitehall.





The wrong leaving gift for Sentance

Howard Archer, the IHS Global Insight economist, is worried for Andrew Sentance, who is next month due to step down from the Monetary Policy Committee. Sentance has for months been campaigning for an interest rate rise, but the latest inflation figures suggest May might not, after all, be the month when rates start to go up. If the MPC can't give Sentance the send-off he really wants in May, Archer suggests: "Perhaps they'll give him a nice bottle of something instead – which would help consumer spending."



Time to flee the high street?

Morgan Stanley's analysts are not the people to whom you should turn if you're after a more optimistic take on the UK retail business. Their latest report, on the electricals sector, makes dispiriting reading. How should Dixons and Kesa Electricals combat the lacklustre performances of their UK operations, Currys and Comet? One solution, says Morgan Stanley, is to get rid. Scandinavia and France, where the duo respectively have decent operations, are a better bet, it says. Farewell Currys and Comet?

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

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