News

Retail sales rose at their fastest rate in nine years in December, the Office for National Statistics reported yesterday. However, some City analysts immediately cast doubt on the reliability of the figures.

Credit Crisis Diary: 06/04/2009

Anti-G20 protesters 1, BNP Paribas 0

Clearly the compliance bods at the London offices of French bank BNP Paribas are more influential in these days of riots and anti-capitalism.

Deborah Orr: Can women save the economy? At least give us a chance to try

Fern Britton, the television presenter, raised cheers – and a few boos – on Question Time the other night when she suggested that Britain's financial crisis would not have occurred if women had been in charge. It's not quite as simple as that, of course. But the gist of her argument is already in the mainstream.

Murray in semi-finals after Ljubicic victory

Andy Murray secured his place in the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas Open semi-finals here after coming through a tough encounter with Ivan Ljubicic 7-5 7-6 (8-6). Murray overcame the 74th-ranked Ljubicic in a little over two hours and will now meet the winner of the Roger Federer-Fernando Verdasco quarter-final.

Murray makes progress with easy victory

Andy Murray continued his comeback from illness by easing into the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open at the expense of Paul-Henri Mathieu last night.

Sport in Brief: Victory in singles gives Murray a happy return

Andy Murray advanced to the third round of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells with a hard-fought victory over Albert Montanes last night. Murray battled to a 7-5 6-3 win in his first singles match since being forced to withdraw before his quarter-final with Richard Gasquet in Dubai last month.

HSBC set to launch £12bn rights issue

Banking giant to ask investors to strengthen balance sheet following 26 per cent drop in pre-tax profits

Investment Column: GSK promises investors a shot in the arm

Compass Group; BG Group

Banks fear for billions in Wall St 'scam'

Financial giants revealed potential losses of almost £4 billion today as they joined a queue of investors caught up in an alleged fraud by investment manager Bernard Madoff.

Reed Elsevier to keep its business arm after rejecting bidders' demands

Reed Elsevier's attempts to offload its $1bn (£680m) business arm collapsed yesterday after its remaining suitor made an offer that was "impossible" to accept, insiders said.

Bain close to clinching $1bn 'Variety' deal

Reed Elsevier, the Ftse-100 media giant, is close to selling the publisher of New Scientist and Variety to US buyout group Bain Capital for $1bn (£680m), after its main rival pulled out.

Credit crisis diary: 29/11/2008

A victory cheer that was a little premature

Standard Chartered Bank no doubt pays Finsbury a healthy retainer for its services, but the City PR firm does its best to earn its money. As the market closed on Thursday, when Standard Chartered's shares went ex-rights, Finsbury emailed contacts to crow about the 11 per cent gain the stock had racked up over the day. Sadly, come the end of the closing auction a few minutes later, the gain had turned into a 2 per cent loss. Still, you can't fault Finsbury for its efforts in getting even the briefest bit of good news out there for its clients.

Black Monday II: the worst for decades

More than £93 billion was wiped from the value of the UK's biggest companies today as London's FTSE 100 suffered its biggest fall since Black Monday.

Pressure on UK to match German savings pledge

Last night the Danish government became the fourth European country to announce that it would guarantee all deposits in Danish banks. Last week, the Irish government promised to protect all retail, commercial and inter-bank deposits, as well as senior debt, which caused investors to flock to Irish banks. The Greek government has made a similar pledge.

American real-estate market hit by sharpest ever annual drop in prices

An end to the American housing recession, something that many observers regard as essential to ending the credit crunch, seemed little closer yesterday, with US real estate prices falling by the sharpest annual rate ever in July, though the monthly rate of decline is slowing.

Darling accused of prompting crisis in confidence

Pound at record low against euro w Mortgage approvals dive more than 70% w Export orders fall
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Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones