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Britain's ageing population and changes to workplace pensions proved lucrative for Resolution during the first half of the year.

Resolution-Axa talks continue this week

Talks between Resolution and Axa continue this week, as the Clive Cowdery-led group looks set to agree terms with the French insurer for the £2.8bn purchase of its UK life operation.

Resolution close to deal for Axa life insurance

Clive Cowdery, the insurance executive behind Resolution, is close to clinching a deal to buy the UK life insurance operation of France's Axa, for between £2.5bn and £3bn. The buy-out could be announced as early as next week, after talks that have gone on for more than a month moved towards a successful conclusion over the past day or so.

County round-up: Rain prevents second Hampshire miracle

On the day that it was announced Kevin Pietersen will pull on a Hampshire jersey in anger this season, the Rose Bowl club could not muster a second miracle. Hampshire, who sit at the bottom of the County Championship First Division, had Essex on the ropes – 99 for 6, chasing an unlikely 328 to win – but rain intervened.

Co-operative is second firm to ditch longevity swap deal

The Co-operative has become the second company in a week to ditch plans, through a so-called longevity swap deal, to insure itself against the risk of pension fund members living longer than anticipated.

Pension Corporation rocked by senior management resignations

Departures are a major blow to the stability of the insurance buyout group

Gilchrist out for just two as Sussex canter to Lord's win

Adam Gilchrist is used to being in the spotlight but last night he might have appreciated a little less attention. Brought in by Middlesex to beef up their challenge for the Friends Provident t20 this season, the Australian wicketkeeper lasted just three balls – scoring two runs – before a 15,000-strong crowd saw him trudge back to the pavilion as the Lord's side were easily beaten by champions Sussex.

Collingwood to make Twenty20 comeback

England captain Paul Collingwood will be fit in time to play for Durham in the Friends Provident t20 this month. Collingwood, who led England to victory in the World Twenty20 last month, is missing from the Test series against Bangladesh because of a shoulder injury.

Pru executives fight for survival after AIA deal is declared dead

The Prudential insisted yesterday that it was backing its chief executive, Tidjane Thiam, and chairman, Harvey McGrath, amid mounting pressure for heads to roll after the insurer's planned $35.5bn (£24bn) takeover of its Asian rival AIA collapsed.

Pru tells US that it needs a new AIA deal ready by Tuesday

Prudential executives were last night locked in talks with insurer AIG and US Government officials in a desperate bid to secure a cut in the $35.5bn (£24.5bn) price of Asian insurer AIA by the opening of trading in London tomorrow.

Steady Cook can fill boots as faults ironed out

When the first ball of the first Test of the summer is bowled at Lord's on Thursday, the start of the Ashes tour will not be much more than five months distant. Like it or not, every match involving England players – or potential England players – between now and then will be examined for any implications for the winter series, and in many respects winning the World Twenty20 appears to have complicated the situation.

Prudential puts rights issue on ice after FSA sounds alarm

Prudential was left with egg on its face after an 11th-hour postponement of its £14bn rights issue raised further questions over its ability to pull off a planned $35.5bn (£23.5bn) takeover of the Asian insurer AIA.

Prudential set to offer shares at 40 per cent discount

The life insurer Prudential will today attempt to entice investors to back its £14bn cash call with new shares being offered at a 40 per cent discount. The rights issue, which will price this morning, is being launched to fund the $35.5bn (£23bn) takeover of AIA – AIG's Asian businesses. Prudential has been battling to convince its shareholders of the merits of the deal, which will transform the company into Asia's biggest insurance group if successful.

Tinkering with pensions is not enough

The demographic time bomb that awaits us means a serious overhaul is needed. Are politicians up to it? Julian Knight investigates
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Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
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The Secret Cinema performance of Back to the Future has been cancelled again
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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
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Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In my grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service