News

Unilever has announced plans to ditch PricewaterhouseCoopers after 27 years and is set to move its  £18 million a year audit to rival KPMG.

Beginner's Guide To: Personal loans

Loan rates are starting to gradually fall, however, providers continue to be very selective on who they will offer their best deals to with many of the most competitive products available to existing customers only.

EU antitrust chief-to-be backs mega-fines

The European Union's designated antitrust commissioner said he considered the EU's high fines an effective deterrent to cartels or monopoly abuse.

Intel hit with lawsuit over competition abuses

Intel, the world's leading microchip maker, which is already facing the largest European Union fine for anti-competitive practices, was yesterday hit with further legal action in its main market, the US.

Intel pays out $1.2 billion to chip maker rival

Intel is paying Silicon Valley rival Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) $1.25 billion (£749 million) to squash a legal battle over Intel's sales tactics, a rift that led to antitrust charges against Intel in several countries and was headed toward a costly and nasty trial next year.

Axe swings at Sun Micro as Oracle deal looms

Sun Microsystems plans to eliminate up to 3,000 jobs as it awaits a takeover by Oracle, a deal that is being held up by antitrust regulators in Europe.

Competition Commission fights on against PPI

The Competition Commission will continue its campaign against payment protection insurance (PPI) schemes, which consumer lobby groups have long condemned for their loopholes and poor value for money.

David Prosser: FirstGroup offers Adonis a cheap fare

Outlook: The combination of FirstGroup and National Express would have a stranglehold on certain types of service

Google CEO to stay on Apple board despite antitrust inquiry

Google CEO Eric Schmidt says he doesn't plan to resign from Apple's board despite a government inquiry into whether the ties between the two companies violate antitrust law.

EU forced to go soft on budget deficit breaches

Brussels is to take disciplinary|action against six European Union members for breaching the bloc’s maximum allowed budget deficit as they attempt to shore up their faltering economies. But it emerged last night that France, Ireland, Spain, Hungary, Malta and Latvia are likely to escape relatively unscathed, with the European Commission under heavy pressure not to slap the heavy penalties that breaking EU’s budget deficit rules would normally incur.

Apax edges away from £1.25bn Reed bid

Apax has cooled its interest in the £1.25bn auction for Reed Business Information (RBI), the publisher. Rivals United Business Media and Informa have already indicated that they are not interested in the auction.

Sky appeals against ITV share sale order

BSkyB will launch a formal appeal today against the Competition Commission's ruling that it must sell more than half of its 17.9 per cent stake in rival broadcaster ITV at a cost of hundreds of millions of pounds.

How we met: Danny Brocklehurst and Max Beesley

'I have a difficult relationship with actors. It doesn't always do to be friends with them'

Howard Jacobson: It's official... if you take the trouble to read Shakespeare, your brain will thank you for it

Forgive my jubilation, but I have been waiting for this scientific proof for a long time

Gill warns Fifa over cash row

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there