News Former Enron chief executive Jeffrey Skilling could be released before the end of the decade

Jeffrey Skilling, the ex-Enron chief executive who was sent to prison in 2006 after being convicted for his role in the energy giant’s collapse, could be freed by the end of the decade after a US judge cut his sentence from 24 to 14 years.

The Investment Column: Hammerson offers a safe haven

Chaucer tells a good tale but hold for the full story - Profitable Bodycote is looking good value

Flying Brands back on the merger trail

Flying Brands, the flowers-to-plants mail order company, signalled yesterday it was back on the acquisition trail six years after its last attempt to expand ended disastrously with multiple profit warnings and trading hiccups.

Martin Broughton, British Airways Chairman: Lover of the jumps who is taking to the skies

Martin Broughton belongs to that new breed of super-chairman exemplified by the likes of Niall FitzGerald of Reuters, Dick Olver at BAE Systems and David Varney, who has just moved on from mmO 2 - highly paid but also highly pressured. Mr Broughton's new job at British Airways, which began this week, will entail a lot more than simply chairing the monthly board meeting, holding the ring once a year at the annual meeting and then picking up his director's fee (£250,000 in this case).

The energy giants who flew too close to the sun

It was the ultimate "perp walk" - Kenneth Lay, friend of two presidents and founder of the erstwhile seventh-largest corporation in America - was paraded yesterday in handcuffs on his way to the federal courthouse in Houston to be formally charged with "spearheading" the most spectacular fraud in modern US business history.

Kenneth Lay indicted in $67bn Enron scandal

Kenneth lay, the former chairman of Enron, has been formally indicted for his role in the accounting scandal which led to the $67bn (£36bn) bankruptcy of the energy trading group in December 2001 - at the time the largest business failure in US history.

Former Enron chief surrenders to FBI

The former Enron CEO Kenneth Lay surrendered to the FBI today to face criminal charges stemming from the 2001 collapse of the energy company he founded.

Government urged inquiry into impact of cap on auditors' liability

Jacqui Smith, the minister for Industry and the Regions, revealed yesterday that the Government had asked the Office of Fair Trading to consider whether limiting liability for audit firms would have an adverse impact on competition in the market.

Accounting overhaul brings £1.3bn Premier float closer

Premier Foods, the owner of Typhoo Tea and Branston Pickle, has changed its accounting policies, resulting in a restatement of its turnover figures for the past three years. It is also selling peripheral businesses as speculation mounts that it could announce a £1.3bn float within the next two weeks.

Cairn director buys £624,000 of company shares

The deputy chairman of Cairn Energy splashed out nearly £624,000 on shares in the company yesterday, following large share purchases by other company directors recently.

John Jones: Why one firm has no truck with violence

Meet the couple who set up a company to fight violent crime against lorry drivers

Tibbett & Britten chiefs share £5m takeover windfall

The directors of the haulage and logistics company Tibbett & Britten stand to share in a pay-off worth up to £5m, following the takeover of the business yesterday by its UK rival Exel.

Sykes report calls for new 'forum' to self-regulate financial services

Financial services companies must set up a system of self-regulation, with a "forum" of the great and the good to punish mis-selling, if it is to restore public trust, according to a wide-ranging critique of the industry.

Low-income lenders face wrath of Consumer Council

Shares in the two leading lending companies focused on low-income groups fell heavily yesterday after it emerged that the National Consumer Council is likely to make a "super complaint" about the £2bn industry to the Office of Fair Trading.

Investment Column: Too early to be optimistic for AWG

AWG, the owner of Anglian Water, was owning up to past mistakes yesterday and promising that it would do better in future. As a new(ish) chief executive, Jonson Cox was able to freely criticise his predecessors' decisions.

Shareholders vote down Aegis pay deal

Shareholders in Aegis, the media-buying agency, finally lost patience with the company and hit back at a £2.35m "payment for failure" enshrined in the contract of Doug Flynn, its chief executive.

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Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?