Outlook Raise a glass to Greene King. The pub and restaurant group reported a sparkling 5 per cent increase in sales over Christmas. But fill it with Cava rather than Champagne.

The Business On... Matthew Earl, Analyst, Matrix

Another teenage scribbler?

Video: Osborne: 'Budget to move from rescue to recovery'

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, says next week's budget will focus on the "deep-rooted problems in the UK economy".

David Prosser: More pain all round but the banks survive to fight another day

Outlook Here is is how Vince Cable – then just a humble Treasury spokesman for the Liberal Democrats – described the voluntary tax avoidance code for the banking sector when the Labour government first launched it last December: "A terribly limp-wristed response to a serious abuse". By yesterday, that same code had become the centrepiece of the Government's latest effort to reassure people that banks will take their fair share of the pain as we pay down the deficit.

£1m severance payout for ex-Labour ministers

Former Labour ministers were handed more than £1 million in severance pay at the General Election, official figures showed today.

Birthday Honours: Order Of The Bath


Ms Lesley Ann Strathie. Permanent secretary, HM Revenue and Customs. (Hornchurch, Essex)

David Prosser: Greek lessons for Britain's next Chancellor of the Exchequer

Outlook: Let's be clear. Britain is not Greece. We may currently be running record budget deficits, but our total debt as a proportion of GDP is less than half that of the Greeks.

Econoblog: Cable, the Peoples' Chancellor

If we had an election for Chancellor of the Exchequer, Vince Cable would win it. Despite the best efforts of some in the media, he remains the Peoples' Chancellor, and in the Channel 4 debate last night he showed why.

Business Diary: Tories in trouble over Heathrow

The Institute of Directors today offers tacit support to the Conservatives with a business manifesto calling for immediate steps to cut the deficit. One demand will cause problems: the IoD wants the next Government to agree to a third runway at Heathrow, to which the Tories are implacably opposed.

Letters show how Brown tried to heal rift with Mowlam

PM's 'emotional' correspondence with dying MP was an attempt to end their long-standing feud

Andreas Whittam Smith: Brown is plunging down the same abyss as Major

Harrassment can begin when a PM's personal qualities are lacking

Lloyds meets Treasury over toxic scheme

Lloyds Banking Group today said talks were ongoing over possible alternatives to the Government's toxic asset insurance scheme amid speculation it has been banned from withdrawing.

Norman Glass: Civil servant whose work led to the Sure Start programme

Norman Glass influenced the lives of many children and families who will never know him. Glass was a Renaissance man. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin, he received distinctions in Hebrew and Gaelic in his entrance examinations and achieved a first-class degree. He was awarded a post-graduate diploma in European integration from the University of Amsterdam. He also claimed to be a qualified rugby referee.

Rank blasts government bingo tax

Rank chief says ministers are prejudiced against their constituents' pastimes

Stephen King: Economic forecasters could learn something from meteorologists

Forecasters got their projections badly wrong – the Treasury's were particularly misleading

We did not take taxpayer for a mug, Darling insists

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Governor of the Bank of England and the chief executive of the Fin-ancial Services Authority faced a barrage of hostile questioning from MPs yesterday.

Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson has rejected criticisms of his language, according to BBC director of television Danny Cohen
A polar bear’s diet is rich in seal blubber and half of its own body weight is composed of fat
Life and Style
fashion David Beckham fronts adverts for his underwear collection
Flocking round: Beyoncé, Madame Tussauds' latest waxwork, looking fierce in the park
travelIn a digital age when we have more access than ever to the stars, why are waxworks still pulling in crowds?
Arts and Entertainment
Arts and Entertainment
Judi Dench appeared at the Hay Festival to perform excerpts from Shakespearean plays
tvJudi Dench and Hugh Bonneville join Benedict Cumberbatch in BBC Shakespeare adaptations
Is this how Mario Balotelli will cruise into Liverpool?
Ronahi Serhat, a PKK fighter, in the Qandil Mountains in Iraqi Kurdistan
Career Services

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
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape