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Small Talk: Cameron plan to ease cash flow for SMEs could be a winner

Having failed to force Britain's banks to lend more to small and medium-sized enterprises, it appears the Prime Minister now hopes to persuade our largest companies to do their bit instead.

Tom Bawden: Only two women CEOs left in FTSE 100: perhaps it is time to give quotas a go

Cynthia Carroll is the second female FTSE 100 chief executive to resign in less than a month, and cuts in half the number of women holding the top spot at a blue-chip company.

Boss departs from defence firm Chemring

The chief executive of Chemring, in the takeover sights of US private equity house Carlyle, yesterday experienced the defence firm's own ejector seats, leaving "with immediate effect".

Shell fired up for Fram gas boost

Shell said that its Fram field in the North Sea would be up and running within three years and will provide 5 per cent of Britain's gas at peak production, after winning government approval for the project.

Black Monday, 25 years on: so what's changed?

Twenty-five years ago yesterday the stock market suffered what then seemed an extraordinary catastrophe. If Black Monday seemed shocking then, recent events – banking and financial crises that have raised the prospect that entire continents may go bust – suggest it was just one of those things.

Derek Pain: Day the Great Storm blew down the City

No Pain, No Gain

Market Report: The mid-cap index beats its big brother

Big isn't always beautiful. Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of the FTSE 250 and, looking back over the two decades since the index was created, it is worth noting that it has proven a better bet than its blue-chip big brother.

US strength opens door to bumper Wolseley dividend

Wolseley will return several hundred million pounds to shareholders this week as the building supplies group unveils its annual results.

A summer of discontent as the markets stagnate

The summer stagnation of financial markets was laid bare yesterday as the London Stock Exchange, one of the world's largest brokers, Icap, and a swathe of smaller City firms revealed sharp falls in trading.

Market Report: City warms to Yule tidings of takeover

Rubber medical gloves aren't usually an item that gets the pulse racing of your average City trader, but last night chemical maker Yule Catto & Co did just that.

Market Report: Mining strife threat to Anglo American

The unrest that struck Lonmin's platinum mines in South Africa is swiftly spreading and has now hit mining giant Anglo American. Anglo American Platinum – Amplats – the world's largest platinum producer, which is 80 per cent owned by Anglo American, has admitted that it has received demands for higher wages from its workers – sparking fears the conflict at Lonmin's Marikana mine, which left 44 dead, is spreading.

Glencore chief calls Qatar's bluff on Xstrata

Glencore chief executive Ivan Glasenberg called Qatar's bluff yesterday, giving the strongest sign yet that he will not cave in to its demands to hike his £30bn offer for Xstrata.

Glencore threatens to walk away from Xstrata

Glasenberg resists Qatari attempts to get trader to raise £30bn offer for miner

Time almost up for Shell to begin Arctic drilling

Shell is racing to begin a massive drilling campaign in US Arctic waters before they freeze over and postpone activities by a year.

Market Report: Approach doubts hit Chemring price

Traders were in a defensive mood yesterday as volumes hovered around annual August lows and defence stocks found themselves in focus. Chemring, the military equipment maker, was the FTSE 250's biggest faller, down 40.8p to 373.9p, as doubt emerged about Carlyle's approach coming to fruition. The US private-equity firm admitted its interest in Chemring last Friday but scribes at UBS reiterated that it is still "highly preliminary".

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