News

Goldman Sachs’ private equity arm is set to announce a £150m investment in insurance group Hastings Direct that will leave chairman Neil Utley cashing in tens of millions of pounds from the business he turned around after buying it in 2008.

Steve Richards: Are things really that bad for Labour?

Some Conservatives have doubts about whether they can win big at the next election

Wealth Check: Part-time work could be the right move for full-time mum

Kate Tym, 43, is a freelance poet and full-time mother. She writes poems for weddings and is looking for ways to boost her business and her income.

Matthew Norman: The Lib Dems may miss their chance

What a masterstroke if Clegg declared that he was ready to swap jobs with his deputy

Jeremy Warner: Nemesis of the mutually owned building societies

Outlook: First, Dunfermline Building Society went bust; then Moody's downgraded the credit rating of nine smaller building societies, some of them to only just above junk; now a self-styled "whistle-blower" comes forward to claim that the Financial Services Authority had stood idly by while building societies expanded their lending into ever more risky areas and were "eaten alive" by avaricious investment bankers.

Brown was 'complacent' over banking collapse

Treasury allowed Northern Rock to continue high-risk loans, reveal auditors

Bad debts rise threefold at Northern Rock

Northern Rock's bad debts jumped almost threefold last year as the slowing economy took its toll on the nationalised bank's controversial Together loans.

Andreas Whittam Smith: Darling should have known about Goodwin's pension

Ministerial incompetence has been present since this crisis began

Jeremy Warner: Ninety per cent mortgages courtesy of the taxpayer

Outlook: The debt overhang of the boom has to be removed before a proper recovery can begin

Northern Rock to offer £14bn more in mortgages

The head of nationalised Northern Rock today said he was ready to "take the shackles off" the lender as it announced up to £14bn extra in new mortgages.

Julian Knight: The banks were never going to listen to Cassandra

Paul Moore, like the ancient Cassandra, was always doomed to be ignored. HBOS was caught in the same mad mindset as almost every other major corporate player in banking and beyond.

Ex-shareholders lose Northern Rock battle

Former shareholders in Northern Rock failed today in their High Court bid to overturn a Government compensation scheme which they say will result in their shares being valued at nothing.

Northern Rock's losses on repossessed homes soar

Losses incurred by Northern Rock on repossessed homes soared nearly four-fold during 2008 as the economy deteriorated, figures showed today.

Julian Knight: Why shoot the media when you can't miss banks?

It may not be most people's idea of fun, but I actually like meetings of the Treasury Select Committee – well some of them at least. They have provided some good knockabout stuff. The MPs on the committee are really in their element when a banker (preferably American) comes blinking in front of them trying to defend the often indefensible.

New hope for home loans as Rock revives

Could the nationalised bank's return to competitive lending help kickstart the credit market? Kate Hughes reports

Minor British Institutions: Ordnance Survey

Given all the major banks that have been nationalised or semi-nationalised recently, it seems odd indeed that the Government still seems set on privatising Ordnance Survey. Something of a minnow when set against Northern Rock or RBS, Ordnance Survey has been doing that old-fashioned Victorian thing of public service since, well, before Victorian times.

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Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes
Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs:

Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs

"I have never regarded anything I have done in "the media" as a proper job"
Lyricist Richard Thomas shares his 11-step recipe for creating a hit West End musical

11-step recipe for creating a West End hit

Richard Thomas, the lyricist behind the Jerry Springer and Anna Nicole Smith operas, explains how Bob Dylan, 'Breaking Bad' and even Noam Chomsky inspired his songbook for the new musical 'Made in Dagenham'
Tonke Dragt's The Letter for the King has finally been translated into English ... 50 years on

Buried treasure: The Letter for the King

The coming-of-age tale about a boy and his mission to save a mythical kingdom has sold a million copies since it was written by an eccentric Dutchwoman in 1962. Yet until last year, no one had read it in English
Can instilling a sense of entrepreneurship in pupils have a positive effect on their learning?

The school that means business

Richard Garner heads to Lancashire, where developing the 'dragons' of the future is also helping one community academy to achieve its educational goals
10 best tablets

The world in your pocket: 10 best tablets

They’re thin, they’re light, you can use them for work on the move or keeping entertained
Lutz Pfannenstiel: The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents

Lutz Pfannenstiel interview

The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents
Pete Jenson: Popular Jürgen Klopp can reignite Borussia Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern Munich

Pete Jenson's a Different League

Popular Klopp can reignite Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern
John Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

The use of the British hostage demonstrates once again the militants' skill and originality in conducting a propaganda war, says Patrick Cockburn
The killer instinct: The man who helps students spot potential murderers

The killer instinct

Phil Chalmers travels the US warning students how to spot possible future murderers, but can his contentious methods really stop the bloodshed?
Clothing the gap: A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd

Clothing the gap

A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd
Fall of the Berlin Wall: Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain

The Fall of the Berlin Wall

Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain