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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.

Trade figures relieve gloom

Britain's trade with other countries moved back into the black for the first time in nearly eight years between July and September, the Central Statistical Office said yesterday.

View from City Road: Farewell to the two-week account

A 200-year-old stock market tradition comes to a close on Monday - the two-week, or occasionally three-week, account. Few City professionals will mourn its demise - though quite a number of the old guard are planning wakes. The two-week account led to the most ghastly concentration of settlement work at the end of the account period, and of course, it allowed speculators to gamble with others'capital. If you bought and sold within the account, you didn't have to put up any money. Good news, then, for the big securities firms but what about private investors?

Law Report: Bank of England's freeze on Serbian cash upheld: Regina v HM Treasury and another, ex parte Centro-Com SRL, CA (Lord Justice Glidewell, Lord Justice Kennedy and Sir John Megaw), 27 May 1994

A policy decision by the Bank of England not to permit payment out of Serbian bank accounts, frozen under a United Nations sanctions resolution, for exports to Serbia and Montenegro even of authorised medical and humanitarian goods exempted from the sanctions, unless exported from the United Kingdom, was lawful under UK domestic law. Since, however, it might involve a breach of the requirement of uniform export policy under European law in article 113 of the EEC Treaty, the matter would be referred to the European Court of Justice.

Bunhill: Out of office

AS EVERY schoolboy knows, MPs are not allowed to resign, and can only get away by taking an 'office of profit under the Crown'. Hence the appointment of Bryan Gould as 'Steward and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead'.

Coin questions

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has asked the Royal Mint to assess views a pounds 2 coin and the replacement of the 50p with a smaller coin.

Cabinet at odds over funding for nurseries: Treasury opposition threatens pounds 100m boost for under-fives

A CABINET split threatens to block a pounds 100m initiative intended by John Patten, Secretary of State for Education, as a first stage in implementing John Major's pledge to expand nursery education.

Man deported

John Onanuga, 31, who caused a political storm when he falsely claimed that Norman Lamont, the then Chancellor of the Exchequer, used his Access card to buy champagne and cigarettes, was deported for outstaying a visitor's visa.

Weak money supply fuels growth fears

THE Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Governor of the Bank of England will meet tomorrow to discuss a further cut in interest rates as slower growth in the amount of money circulating in the economy casts further doubt on the strength of high street spending, writes Robert Chote.

Television company apologises for comic's lewd jibe at Lamont

LONDON Weekend Television was last night forced to make a rare prime-time apology for a lewd joke about Norman Lamont, the former Chancellor of the Exchequer, which was made during a live televised awards ceremony.

Law Report: Freeze on Serbian cash upheld: Regina v HM Treasury and another, ex parte CentroCom SRL - Queen's Bench Divisional Court (Lord Justice Watkins and Mr Justice Auld), 6 September 1993.

A policy decision by the Bank of England, not to permit payment out of Serbian bank accounts, frozen under a United Nations sanctions resolution, for exports to Serbia and Montenegro even of authorised medical and humanitarian goods exempted from the sanctions, unless exported from the United Kingdom, was lawful notwithstanding that it was more restrictive than the UN resolution which it sought to enforce.

Armed for battle over defence

A SPOOF tax rebate form is part of a new campaign by the World Development Movement, calling for conventional military spending to be partially re-directed towards social and economic measures.

Major's press secretary to move back to Treasury: 'Bittersweet' departure for O'Donnell

GUS O'DONNELL, press secretary to John Major since he was Chancellor of the Exchequer, is leaving his job in the New Year to return to the Treasury. He will be replaced by Christopher Meyer, currently the No 2 diplomat in the British embassy in Washington.

Chancellor freed from pre-Budget tradition

KENNETH CLARKE, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, has never been the sort of minister who would be gagged easily, and yesterday the Cabinet appeared to bow to the inevitable by abolishing the traditional rule of pre-Budget purdah, writes Colin Brown.

Surprise speech after surprise sacking

THE PRIME Minister's office was as surprised by Norman Lamont's decision to make his resignation statement yesterday as the former Chancellor of the Exchequer had been by John Major's decision to sack him.

Oil tax changes 'could cost 21,000 jobs'

A CLAIM that up to 21,000 jobs could be lost as a result of the Government's proposed changes in petroleum revenue tax is made today by the Association of Service Sector Oil-Related Companies.
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