Money

The rates may be enticing at the grocers turned banks but consumers need to take more care than they would buying beans, says Lindsay Cook

Bond and Bake Offs boost for Aga

The unlikely combination of Mary Berry and James Bond have helped to give Aga's chief executive William McGrath "an air of optimism for 2013".

'Twenty Twelve' is Dad’s Army scripted by Joseph Heller

The NHS's appointment of a Head of Brand sparked outrage. But why do we hate the idea so much?

The art of branding is not so cynical as most would presume

Page 3 Profile: Lynton Crosby, Pollster

Aha, the Wizard of Oz. How did he get that name?

Secret policeman's ballot: the polling stations where NO ONE turned up

Commissioner elections embarrass Government

SSE defends profits surge of 40 per cent after hiking prices

The energy supplier SSE angered consumer groups yesterday by revealing a near 40 per cent surge in profits, weeks after slapping an extra £100 on fuel bills.

From twitter user @magennis_joshua

Pumpkin brag: what a carve up!

The recession has seen fewer folk leaving their carved pumpkins on the front doorstep (they'll be nicked!), so jack-o'-lantern artists have looked elsewhere to show off their designs: social networking. And there has been plenty of pumpkin bragging (pumpkinbrag?) this week.

Imperial Tobacco puffs up the divi

Imperial Tobacco, the world's fourth-largest tobacco group, cheered investors yesterday with an 11 per cent dividend hike to a mighty 105.6p a share.

Editorial: Time to kick tobacco's butt

Is it too much to hope that in a hundred years' time, the smoking of tobacco will be a thing of the past, a quaint and ill-informed historical quirk akin to the use of lead as a face powder in the 18th century? With bans, taxes and public health campaigns already significantly depressing smoker numbers in the developed world, the hope is not wholly forlorn.

Should your boss be your Facebook Friend?

Should you Friend your boss on Facebook?

In a sign of our changing times, a forthcoming white paper out of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton school bears the title, "OMG My Boss Just Friended Me."

Argos looking to better-off shoppers to revive fortunes

Argos is making an aggressive pitch for better-off customers and winding down its traditional catalogue sales as part of a £300m bid to revive the struggling retailer's fortunes.

Olympic boost helps Sports Direct beat the slump

Nearly every other shop in Britain might be struggling to pay its way, but Sports Direct is flogging enough £1.49 tracksuit bottoms and 29p Wayne Rooney masks to send sales up 18 per cent to £403m in the nine weeks to October.

Argos launches £300m digital bid to woo richer customers and end catalogue of woe

Argos is making an aggressive pitch for better-off customers and winding down its traditional catalogue sales as part of a £300m bid to revive the struggling retailer's fortunes.

Premier poised to sell off Hovis

One of Britain's biggest bread brands, Hovis, looks increasingly likely to be sold after its owner, Premier Foods, said yesterday it was looking at a range of options to unlock value from an increasingly cutthroat business.

'Courtroom chaos': Government accused of endangering justice by using cut-price courtroom interpreters

Britain’s leading translators today accused the government of endangering justice with a cut-price private contract for courtroom interpreters, which is “dangerous to the interests of public safety."

Grant Shapps admits using his alter ego in Britain

Grant Shapps, the Conservative co-chairman who was photographed posing as a self-help guru under an alias at a Las Vegas conference, admitted yesterday deploying the same stunt at an event in London.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?