News Mike Ashley has mellowed in recent years, so his stake in Debenhams surprised the City

The Sports Direct tycoon is well known for keeping rivals guessing. Simon Neville attempts to unravel his stakebuilding plan for Debenhams

Market Report: Betfair on a winner with German licence award

Jackpot. Betfair was celebrating a big win yesterday after the betting firm was awarded one of the first licences for online gambling in Germany. With Europe increasingly regulating internet gambling, fears that it may struggle to win licences have weighed on the stock and, as a result, the sense of relief was palpable as Betfair jumped 45p to 839.5p.

Sportingbet is game for another flutter in the US

Sportingbet, the online bookie is "reviewing re-entering" the US market today after paying its last fine relating to its former activities in the world's biggest economy.

Sportingbet game for a winner with US return

Sportingbet, the online bookie is "reviewing re-entering" the US market today after paying its last fine relating to its former activities in the world's biggest economy.

Simon English: WorldSpreads should open the book on Foley

Outlook: WorldSpreads should open the book on Foley

Ladbrokes boss to overhaul brand

Ladbrokes boss Richard Glynn has pledged to "reinvigorate" the brand of one of Britain's best-known bookies. Mr Glynn's promise came as the company reported first-half profits of £78.1m. That was down from £114.7m but excluding volatile earnings from high rollers and one-offs, operating profit came in at £97.6m, down from £103.6m last year, when the World Cup boosted earnings. The dividend was up 1.3 per cent at 3.9p.

Spread betting: Man and Compass could yield a dividend deal

Greece will yet again be the word this week as traders wait anxiously for some much-needed clarity about the situation. If the austerity package is eventually accepted by the IMF and EU, the market is set to rally as we move closer to resolving the debt problems.

Day trader hits back at FSA after £1m fine reduced

The offending scheme involved small early-morning orders to dictate the prices offered by spread-betting companies

Betfred wins £265m Tote auction

Veteran bookmaker Fred Done secured horseracing's ultimate prize today by agreeing a £265 million deal to buy the Tote from the Government.

Delay forced in Tote sale decision

A decision over the sale of the Tote is believed to have been delayed as a result of concerns over European state aid laws.

Betfred eyes deal for Tote

The bookmaker Betfred is talking to racecourse groups over setting up a new Tote racing development board. Betfred is vying with Sports Investment Partners (SIP), headed by British Airway's chairman Sir Martin Broughton, to buy the state-owned betting business.

GDP and long weekend give a shorting chance

The best punt of the week could come on Friday when traders are likely to wind down their positions ahead of the long weekend. Going short on the Footsie could yield a decent return, though you need to keep a weather eye on other factors affecting the index.

David Prosser: The Tote race is now too close to call

Outlook Sir Martin Broughton is lining up the ducks as he battles to be allowed to buy the Tote from the Government. Having secured the support of the racing industry ahead of Betfred, his only rival for the Tote, Sir Martin yesterday revealed that his offer is now 100 per cent underwritten by the private equity group Oakley Capital. That answers those who wondered whether he could put his money where his mouth is.

Michael Kim: An insight into American sports betting

Michael Kim speaks with Las Vegas betting expert Chuck Esposito about the wealth of sporting action the public is taking a punt on in America.

Gala Coral and Betfred clear Tote's first fence

Six parties have made it through to second-round bids for the Tote, the state-owned bookmaker which has been put up for sale.

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