News

Banks took a battering yesterday as traders ditched financial stocks after a shock profit warning from Deutsche. Traders feared that news of the German bank’s €1.1bn (£910m) fourth-quarter loss could mean other banks may still have issues to work through and further regulatory fines to deal with.

Festive freeze hits sales across the high street

The full impact of last month's snow on festive trading was laid bare yesterday in a key survey, as the department store chain Debenhams said it lost £30m of sales to the weather.

House of Fraser bucks Christmas retail trend

Department store House of Fraser has beaten rival John Lewis by posting an 8.5 per cent rise in underlying sales over the festive period – the second year running it has broken records.

House of Fraser announces record seasonal trading

Department store chain House of Fraser announced record seasonal trading today despite the impact of December's Arctic weather on pre-Christmas sales.

Margareta Pagano: Stop blaming the weather and get your thermals on

The winners and losers on the high street

Austerity-hit retailers widen north-south gap

Stores look to ease pressure by concentrating on more affluent – and profitable – southern counties

JD Sports lifts forecasts after strong sales over Christmas

JD Sports Fashion upgraded its profits forecasts yesterday as it reported strong Christmas trading despite last month's snow. But the retailer of sportswear and trainers said its next financial year would present "significant challenges" as a result of both the rise in VAT and inflationary pressures in the supply chain.

Market Report: Bullish advertising view makes ITV a must-watch

A positive outlook for advertising revenue gave a boost to ITV, as investors switched on to the broadcaster. The company was lifted by a wide-ranging note on the media sector from Goldman Sachs, in which it upped its forecast for global advertising.

Profit warnings mount up on the high street

Mothercare, the maternity retail specialist, yesterday became the latest chain to issue a profits warning, as last month's heavy snowfall and "formidable" competition from the big supermarkest took its toll on its Christmas sales of toys in the UK.

Big freeze hits Mothercare profits

Retailer Mothercare today warned it will miss profit hopes after the big freeze prevented shoppers reaching its out-of-town stores.

Letters: Waste disposal

Get modern on waste disposal

Market Report: Rolls-Royce boosted by bright 2011 outlook

It looks set to be a cheerful festive period for Rolls-Royce following a torrid couple of months, as the engineering giant was tipped to enjoy a strong 2011.

My Secret Life: Terence Conran, designer, 79

My parents were... a constant inspiration, and encouraged our creativity at a time when such a thing was almost unheard of.

Bob Willis questions England paternity leave

Former England paceman Bob Willis has criticised members of the current squad for taking paternity leave during or before international commitments.

How toys took over kids' TV

The Zingzillas ... Peppa Pig ... Ben & Holly ... did you really think they were just cuddly TV characters loved by your two-year-old? Gerard Gilbert investigates the ruthless – and fearsomely lucrative – world of brand licensing
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there