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.

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

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.

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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Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
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Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
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After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
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Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
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Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

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Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

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