News Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond presents the White Paper for Scottish independence

Scotland's First Minister will have face-to-face talks with the latest Bank of England governor for the first time

Margaret Hodge described some of the payments as 'obscene'

£28m bill for ‘gagging’ ex-public officials

Civil servants receive large severance payments for signing ‘compromise agreements’ on exit

Lord Neuberger, President of the Supreme Court

Senior judges criticise Government's use of secret courts

Judges also lifted 'arbitrary and irrational' sanctions imposed against Iranian Bank Mellat

Robert Mugabe has agreed to push back the date for elections in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe in electoral climbdown as he agrees to push back date of vote from end of July

Robert Mugabe has acceded to regional pressure and agreed to push back the date for elections in Zimbabwe. The 89-year-old president had risked a constitutional crisis by using special powers to announce polls on 31 July.

GCHQ 

British spies at GCHQ 'spied on foreign politicians at G20 summit meetings in London'

An intensive spying operation was mounted by Britain’s secret intelligence agencies on foreign politicians attending two G20 summit meetings in London in 2009, it has been claimed.

Free museums to be spared worst of budget cuts

Britain’s publically funded museums are to be spared from the worst of the Government’s spending cuts, the Chancellor George Osborne is preparing to announce.

Mr Miliband said the Coalition's 2015-16 budget would be the 'starting point' for a three-year cap on social security spending imposed by the next Labour government

A Labour government would mean benefits squeeze, under Ed Miliband's welfare cap

Breaking the link between benefits and inflation would be highly controversial for the party

Utility companies accused of attempting to claw back £900m worth of unjustified tax rebates as part of accountancy scam

After recent tax fiascos involving Starbucks, Amazon and Google, the Chancellor has acted quickly to block any funds draining from the Treasury

Chancellor George Osborne still needs to tackle £8bn black hole after treasury agrees 10% spending cuts with seven Government departments

These departments only account for around 20 per cent of the cuts George Osborne needs to make

IMF managing director Christine Lagarde evades fraud accusation

The IMF chief Christine Lagarde escaped a formal accusation of fraud after two days of interrogation by a special court in France.

James Moore: The IMF is backing a plan B for Britain

Outlook Talking of the IMF, its main reason for being in town yesterday was to give its view on the current state of the UK's economy.

Vodafone tells tax critics it more than pays its way

Vodafone hit back over accusations of tax avoidance yesterday, insisting that it made an "absolutely huge" contribution to the UK Treasury, as the British mobile giant unveiled a big slump in annual pre-tax profits.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Mud wrestling is only entertaining now and again

Oh, how they laughed. Explaining George Osborne’s absence from Treasury Questions, Chief Secretary Danny Alexander was on side-splitting form. “My right honourable friend the Chancellor is in Brussels today at the Ecofin council,” he told MPs, “exercising the considerable influence that Britain enjoys as a full member of the European Union.” Boom, boom!

Eurozone finance ministers in banking union showdown

Eurozone finance ministers were last night squabbling in Brussels over the timetable for a banking union, with some states pushing for faster progress and Germany stressing the need for caution.

Osborne has paid lip service to tackling tax havens, but when will the hard work actually start?

Ten of the world’s tax havens are UK-linked territories - the British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies. The clue is in the names.

Jack Lew’s previous squiggle of a signature, above, and the new one, below

Treasury boss who drove President Obama loopy hits on a new signature for bank notes

When US President Barack Obama nominated Jack Lew as the new Secretary of the US Treasury in January, the media had one overwhelming concern about the appointment: Lew’s illegible signature, which resembles the doodle of an absent-minded child, would now appear on every US banknote.

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War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

War with Isis

Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria
Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

A spring in your step?

Scientists develop mechanical leg brace to help take a load off
Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock

Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold

Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising

Stars safeguard against morbid advertising

As film-makers and advertisers make increasing posthumous use of celebrities' images, some stars are finding new ways of ensuring that they rest in peace
The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head

Hack Circus: Technology, art and learning

Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head. Rhodri Marsden meets mistress of ceremonies Leila Johnston
Sevenoaks is split over much-delayed decision on controversial grammar school annexe

Sevenoaks split over grammar school annexe

If Weald of Kent Grammar School is given the go-ahead for an annexe in leafy Sevenoaks, it will be the first selective state school to open in 50 years
10 best compact cameras

A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now

Paul Scholes column

Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now
Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

The former player on how she is finding time to coach both Manchester Thunder in the Superleague and England in this year's World Cup
General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?