News

Outlook Now just how does that saying go about sinking ships and desertion?

5% pay rise for Centrica chiefs

Top bosses at British Gas parent Centrica will get an average 5% pay rise this year, it was revealed today.

Market Report: Centrica flares higher on payout hopes

Earnings hopes supported Centrica as the FTSE 100, hit by another round of weakness in the mining sector, traded lower last night.

Price row over record profits at British Gas

Calls for price cuts as profits soar 58 per cent at Centrica's retail division

David Prosser: Ofgem has plenty of work to complete

Outlook The Independent is among the leading campaigners for lower energy bills and the figures unveiled by Centrica yesterday – in particular its British Gas subsidiary – will strengthen our case. Though British Gas is now one of the cheapest suppliers in the UK marketplace, further cuts to bills are warranted and its rivals have lots of catching up to do.

The Week Ahead: RBS and Lloyds to post £12bn losses

Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group will announce their 2009 results this week, but analysts predict both are some way from profitability. The two British giants, both of which have been propped up by the Government, are expected to be overshadowed by Barclays' stellar results from last week, which helped drive the stock up almost 20 per cent since the start of the week.

Mark Hanafin: We're not in any danger of running out of supply

With Britain on course for what could be the coldest winter in 30 years, concerns have moved beyond the lack of road grit and focused on the spectre of energy shortages. But while the industry is by no means complacent, and we are watching the situation closely, the evidence is the UK gas market has proved flexible and responsive.

Go-ahead given to develop offshore wind farms

A number of companies were today given the go-ahead to develop new offshore wind farms, potentially paving the way for a massive expansion in renewable energy around the UK's shores.

Gas chiefs issue fresh supply alert

National Grid issued its second gas alert in three days today as the UK's freezing weather pushed demand to record levels.

Market Report: Centrica up on talk of Russian bid in pipeline

British Gas-owner Centrica was in focus last night as speculators piled in on rumours regarding the possibility of a bid from Gazprom, the Russian energy giant.

Leading article: Scandalous profiteering

Profits are up at British Gas. The energy supplier is set to make £541m this year, massively up from £379m the year before. Its parent company, Centrica, is expected to report a full year operating profit of £1.84bn. That is an outrage at a time when wholesale oil and gas prices are at a three-year low and yet the bills being paid by ordinary householders are staggeringly high.

Market Report: Barclays and HSBC report mixed fortunes

It was a tale of two banks for the blue chips yesterday as Barclays and HSBC issued updates – but one was far, far better than the other, and had dramatic results on the market.

Centrica to build new wind farm

British Gas's parent company Centrica today announced it will build a new offshore wind farm in UK waters which will provide enough electricity to power around 200,000 homes.

As customers feel the pinch, energy firms' profits surge

British Gas expected to make 30% more than last year after keeping tariffs high despite plummeting costs

Centrica finally wins control of Venture after £1.3bn bid battle

Centrica gained control of Venture Production yesterday after buying a 16.8 per cent stake in its target on the open market, bringing the long-running takeover battle with the North Sea oil and gas company to a close.

David Prosser: Gas producer going cheap in the North Sea

Outlook: the repeated disputes between Russia and Ukraine over gas demonstrate why premium assets are worth paying for
Career Services

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
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Farewell, my lovely

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

Commonwealth Games 2014

Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games