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Business News

Business Diary: Rose calls in to see old friends

Good to see that old loyalties endure. Who should be seen popping into the food hall at Marks & Spencer's High Street Kensington branch yesterday but former executive chairman Sir Stuart Rose? We couldn't tell whether his combo of dazzling white shirt and denims was from one of the myriad collections he launched at M&S but he was certainly dressed for the hot weather.

Bankers put their dogs before kids

More proof (as if it were needed) that bankers have some strange priorities. A survey of divorced male bankers reveals that while two-thirds of them sought custody of the family dog during the carve-up of assets with their former partners, only one in four wanted custody of their children. And here's a slightly more predictable statistic: 92.5 per cent of divorced male bankers' second wives were younger than their first wife. Welcome to the City, where the clichés come true.

Stone offers some Hollywood glitz

Do you think of yourself as a frustrated film director? Well, now's your chance to live out your dreams. Vzaar, the online marketing portal, has signed up Hollywood director Oliver Stone to judge an awards scheme it is running for the best business videos of the year. Why is Stone bothering with such an overtly corporate venture? Maybe it's something to do with the large shareholding he has in Vzaar.

Charity is the real winner here

More now on Diageo's five-a-side football tournament between business journalists this weekend: Paddy Power's book on the event makes interesting reading. The team from Gorkana, the business intelligence company, is the bookie's 5-1 favourites, closely followed by CNBC, though some may wonder about whether it is playing fair by fielding a former player from the professional Greek side Panathinaikos. You can back the Bank of England at 12-1 (the same odds as the Independent's team, though The Diary's inside tip would be to look elsewhere), while Sky News is the rank outsider at 20-1. This is one gamble on which you can't lose, by the way – the proceeds from any bet that doesn't win will go to the Stroke Association.