NO-HEADLINE

Too many would-be buyers chasing too few available properties were forcing up house prices, a report from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) said. Sellers are delaying putting their houses on the market until they find a property to buy, creating what the Rics called "a self-perpetuating cycle of frustration". This raises the number of people looking, but reduces the levels of property for sale. Many home owners could also be holding off from moving because of this summer's avalanche of windfall payments from building societies. The institution's quarterly survey of the housing market quizzed 268 chartered surveyors over changes in prices and the level of homes sold or for sale. Ian Perry, the Rics housing market spokesman, said prices were rising in many areas, but this was because of the very restricted stock.

Cable & Wireless said its Mercury Communications subsidiary would cut the cost of calls tomorrow to more than 25 international destinations for the majority of its consumer and small business customers. Residential SmartCall customers will pay up to 18 per cent less for international calls while small businesses on the GlobalLink package will pay up to 28 per cent less. GlobalLink customers who call the US and Germany will have prices per minute cut by 20 and 17 per cent respectively.

German consumer prices rose a final 0.5 per cent in January from December and were up 1.8 per cent from a year earlier, the Federal Statistics Office said. In western Germany, final CPI figures rose 0.5 per cent month-on- month and 1.9 per cent year-on-year and eastern German CPI rose 0.7 and 1.7 per cent respectively.

Consumer prices in the OECD, excluding Turkey, rose 0.2 per cent in December after a 0.1 per cent rise in November. Prices were up 3.3 per cent year-on-year in December, unchanged from November. Including Turkey, prices rose 0.3 per cent month-on-month and 4.7 per cent year-on-year. The Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland are excluded from the OECD figures. Underlying inflation, which excludes food and energy prices, fell to 2 per cent in 1996 from 2.7 per cent in 1995. Turkey and eight other OECD members do not provide figures for underlying inflation.

French industrial production grew in most sectors in January compared with December, according to a survey of business leaders by the Bank of France. "The outlook for the coming months is distinctly brighter," the central bank said, adding: "Activity should increase in all sectors, with marked improvements in the intermediate goods and food processing sectors."

Ian Lang, Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, has decided not to refer the acquisition by Carlton Communications of Westcountry Television to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Arts and Entertainment
musicOfficial chart could be moved to accommodate Friday international release day
Sport
Wes Brown is sent-off
football
News
i100
Sport
Italy celebrate scoring their second try
six nations
Sport
Glenn Murray celebrates scoring against West Ham
footballWest Ham 1 Crystal Palace 3
Arts and Entertainment
Drake continues to tease ahead of the release of his new album
music
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SThree: HR Benefits Manager

£40000 - £50000 per annum + pro rata: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...

Recruitment Genius: Office Manager / Financial Services

£30000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Established in 1999, a highly r...

Jemma Gent: Year End Accountant

£250-£300 Day Rate: Jemma Gent: Are you a qualified accountant with strong exp...

Jemma Gent: Management Accountant

£230 - £260 Day Rate: Jemma Gent: Do you want to stamp your footprint in histo...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower