News The eye of the storm: Speakes in the White House in 1982

An assassination attempt plunged Larry Speakes into the brightest of national spotlights as chief spokesman for President Ronald Reagan. When Reagan’s press secretary James Brady was severely wounded in the 1981 attempt on the president’s life, Speakes was thrust into the eye of the storm. As White House spokesman for six years, a long tenure in the sensitive post, he was credited with 2,000 news media briefings.

Dash for cash as rate fears spark UK share sell-off

EUROPEAN FUND managers are dumping British and US equities and boosting their stocks of cash because of growing fears of a hike in US interest rates, according to a new survey. Sentiment about Wall Street has hit its most bearish level for more than four years, Merrill Lynch said.

The Investment Column: ICI's new portfolio faces the same old problems

JUST OVER a year ago, it seemed nothing would stop the inexorable rise of ICI's shares. This symbol of great British industry was well up with the national spirit, transforming itself into what it called "New ICI".

Household water bills to be slashed by pounds 1bn

HOUSEHOLD WATER bills are to be slashed by pounds 1bn next week, a saving of around pounds 35 a year for the average domestic customer.

Paxman hands out prizes at Extel analysts' awards

THE AWARDS ceremony for the Primark Extel Survey 1999 went with more than its usual swing this year, thanks to the slick presentational skills of Extel's new American owners, Primark, a giant financial information company.

Merrill Lynch fined pounds 16m for Sumitomo role

MERRILL LYNCH was yesterday hit with a record pounds 6.5m fine by the London Metal Exchange over its involvement in the Sumitomo copper market scandal three years ago.

Cendant unveils Green Flag sale

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Buyback promise brings Mepit reprieve

US ARBITRAGEURS yesterday backed out of an attempt to force a wind-up of the pounds 1bn Mercury European Privatisation Investment Trust (Mepit) after the trust's board made the unprecedented promise of an open-ended share buyback.

Economists raise UK forecasts for growth

INDEPENDENT ECONOMISTS have upped their forecasts for UK growth for the first time in more than a year, according to figures released yesterday, with the bulk of experts now confident the economy will escape recession.

MAM to expand Merrill branding

MERCURY ASSET Management, the City fund management group acquired by the American investment bankers Merrill Lynch, is considering dropping the "Mercury" name from some products and markets. It will instead selectively market itself solely under the Merrill brand name.

Bovis runs rule over merger candidates

BOVIS HOMES, the housebuilder spun off from transport group P&O a year ago, is considering a merger with a listed rival in a bid to expand its presence in the North of England.

Investment: Airtours hints at buying spree

AIRTOURS, Britain's second largest tour operator, yesterday reported strong first quarter bookings and hinted at a possible pounds 300m buying spree.

Outlook: GUS complaint leaves a sour taste

IT WAS THE first anniversary yesterday of the launch of Great Universal Stores' hostile bid for the catalogue retailer Argos. It was also the day on which the Takeover Panel chose to throw out the complaint subsequently brought by the GUS chairman, Lord Wolfson, over tactics used by Argos and its advisers, Schroders, in the unsuccessful bid defence.

Games Workshop seeks new markets

GAMES WORKSHOP, the war games company that shocked the market with a profits warning last May, is aiming its battalions at overseas markets in the hope of making up for sluggish growth in the UK.

Federal Mogul lines up pounds 3.6bn LucasVarity bid

FEDERAL MOGUL, the acquisitive US engineering company, is eyeing up a pounds 3.6bn bid for LucasVarity, the motor components and aerospace group led by Victor Rice.
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The headstone of jazz great Miles Davis at Woodlawn Cemetery in New York
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Super Mario crushes the Messi dream as Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream

Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Saharan remains may be evidence of the first race war, 13,000 years ago

The first race war, 13,000 years ago?

Saharan remains may be evidence of oldest large-scale armed conflict
Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Researchers hope eye tests can spot ‘biomarkers’ of the disease
Sex, controversy and schoolgirl schtick

Meet Japan's AKB48

Pop, sex and schoolgirl schtick make for controversial success
In pictures: Breathtaking results of this weekend's 'supermoon'

Weekend's 'supermoon' in pictures

The moon appeared bigger and brighter at the weekend
Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor