News

WPP cheered the City yesterday as its half-year profits surged almost 20 per cent to £429m and the advertising giant promised to keep raising the dividend.

Revolt over boardroom pay gains momentum

Anger over boardroom pay will explode again this week as further investor rebellions demonstrate the "shareholder spring" of unrest continues.

'Shareholder spring' revolt over fat cat pay poised to gather pace

Anger over boardroom pay will explode again this week as further investor rebellions demonstrate the "shareholder spring" of unrest continues unabated.

Lord Bell set for battle with WPP over Bell Pottinger buyout plan

Lord Bell is poised to spell out plans for his controversial buyout of the PR firm Bell Pottinger at the annual meeting of parent company Chime Communications this Wednesday, in the face of fierce opposition.

Business week in review

In profit...

'PM does not have credible growth plan', says Sorrell

One of Britain's leading captains of industry yesterday warned that David Cameron has still not come up with a credible growth plan and risks being "blown off course" by news events.

It's bad, but this is not a recession, say businesses

Business leaders cast doubt on yesterday's gloomy GDP figures, arguing that the slump they suggested was not only at odds with their experience but also threatened Britain's fragile economic confidence.

Britain's bosses tell the ONS: it's bad, but not a recession

Corporate leaders fear GDP data will panic consumers while CBI suggests manufacturing remains robust

Stephen Glover: Murdoch haters can't have itboth ways

The tragic death of Marie Colvin has stirred a thousand pens into action, and rightly so. David Cameron and Ed Miliband praised her in the Commons. After months during which newspapers and journalists have been portrayed in unflattering terms, here was a brave and resourceful reporter who had devoted her life to writing about the horrors of war. Despite the awfulness of what had happened, many journalists felt a little better about their trade.

Business Diary: Britain sticks it to French again

In this era of isolationism, the British Government clearly isn't missing any opportunity to stick two fingers up to the French.

Markets crisis could prompt new spending dip, says Sorrell

The world's largest advertising group, WPP, has warned the latest stock-market crisis could hit client spending in 2012, as emerging-market and digital services helped it to post a surge in first-half profits.

Market Report: Aegis shoots higher on talk of a bid from WPP

Bid speculation returned around Aegis last night, as vague rumours suggesting its much bigger rival WPP may be interested in a renewed takeover attempt prompted a sharp rally late in the session.

Leading article: No escape from Sir Martin's watchful eyes

When you make your next purchase online, Sir Martin Sorrell will probably get to learn of it. The Briton who heads the world's biggest advertising group, WPP, yesterday launched a new company, Xaxis, which will preside over the "world's largest database" of 500 million personal profiles, based on such things as the individual's choice in websites and purchases made online. Xaxis will track "almost 100 per cent of the UK population".

WPP's Sir Martin joins board of Stanhope Capital

Sir Martin Sorrell, advertising giant WPP's chief executive, is joining the board of Stanhope Capital, one of Britain's biggest wealth-management groups – with $7.5bn of funds.

Business diary: Tesco's ruthless shopper pursuit

Is Tesco's pursuit of every last high street pound going just a little too far? Only asking, after seeing a customer, who had abandoned in frustration an attempt to buy a bottle of water at a self-service till, being pursuing down Wimbledon's high street by a staff member calling on nearby policemen for help to stop her. He escorted her back to the till and ordered her to complete the transaction, before an apologetic manager intervened.

WPP's Sorrell says he is 'optimistic'

Sir Martin Sorrell, chief executive of advertising giant WPP said he was "cautiously optimistic" over the group's prospects for the year.

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Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas