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In 1990 interest rates were at 15 per cent. You didn't need to be brain of Britain to know that rates at that level were not going to last. It should be easy, therefore, to look at interest rates today – standing at 0.5 per cent – and see this must be the bottom of the interest rate cycle, with little chance of them remaining at record lows in the medium to long term.

Investment advice: Hold fire on emerging market debt

Cautious investors should wait before they dive into this latest bond sector

Twin brothers who allegedly made millions from 'stock picking robot' scam ordered to pay back over £100,000

Twin brothers who allegedly made millions from a ‘stock picking robot’ scam have been ordered to pay back over £100,000.

Ben Bernanke prepares for Fed exit with upbeat assessment

The Federal Reserve remained committed to highly accommodative monetary policy despite having trimmed its bond-buying stimulus programme, Ben Bernanke said on Friday in what could be his last speech as Fed chairman.

Mark Dampier: Britain's small-cap funds punched well above their weight this year

It's been a good year for stock markets. In particular, European and Japanese markets have made large gains. There is a lesson here for all investors: despite a poor economic backdrop, stock markets can perform well. This is often because much of the bad news is priced in and markets are focusing on improved corporate prospects. Similarly, it shows the most uncomfortable investment decisions often turn out to be correct.

Twitter chief executive Dick Costolo, chairman and co-founder Jack Dorsey, and co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone, front row left to right, applaud as they watch their stock open at $45.10 a share on its first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange – 73 per cent above its initial offering

Stock market: Looking for value left out there?

Julian Knight wonders where’s the best place to find a bargain

Simon Read: How funding for lending slashes savers' returns

There was fresh criticism of the Government’s Funding for Lending Scheme on Monday  after new figures revealed that the interest paid on popular fixed-rate bonds has plummeted.

Financial markets rocked by US shutdown fears and political crisis in Italy

Worries over economic impact of US budget deal hits stocks

Co-op bondholders demand talks on bank's £1.5bn bail-in plan

The largest group of Co-op Bank bondholders are asking the troubled bank's board to engage with it over a new £1.5 billion bail-in plan it has produced.

Wall Street trading in turmoil as Nasdaq market freezes amid glitches

Apple and Microsoft hit for hours in second New York trading mess this week

A worker counts one pound denomination premium bonds at a Post Office distribution centre in 1956

Harold Macmillan's Premium Bonds plan survives another cut

As Premium Bond prizes are reduced yet further below inflation, Simon Read asks why they remain so enduringly popular

Anthony Hilton: Bond’s backing for new adoption scheme could help children find a home

One of the most exciting innovations of recent times has been the development of social-impact bonds. These are loans raised in the markets or from private investors where the money is invested to finance and improve the social outcomes delivered by publicly funded services and the return on the bonds is linked to the success of the venture.

Mark Dampier: Don't write off bond exposure just yet

It is still difficult to see interest rates in the UK rising before the next general election.

Borrowed money will still be cheap when Nick Clegg, David Cameron and Ed Miliband go to the polls
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Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
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Prices correct as of 12 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas