All-cash deal is the second largest in Google's history after the $12.5 billion acquisition of mobile phone maker Motorola in 2012

Figures offer fresh hope of end to recession

Hopes that the UK pulled out of recession in the final quarter of 2009 were fuelled today after survey figures revealed an eighth month of growth in the key services sector during December.

MPC unanimous against printing more money

Bank of England policy committee agrees to keep interest rates at record low

Weak service sector puts recovery in doubt

Banks are still reluctant to lend to service sector

Mixed signals make Bank's decision tricky

Strong evidence of recovery in the service sector emerged yesterday, as the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee prepared to make its announcement, at noon today, about an extension of its quantitative easing strategy of injecting money into the economy.

Prophets of doom see new bubbles

Two of the world's most influential investment gurus warned yesterday that financial markets were turning into "bubbles".

Daniel Howden: Victory demonstrates that Greek politics is stagnant

When a party leader with every possible advantage staggers to victory at the third time of asking, trailing two election defeats in his wake, it's clear that politics have stagnated in Greece. George Papandreou has finally succeeded in following his father and grandfather in becoming prime minister but it's an empty victory that will be met with little enthusiasm.

Recovery hopes raised as service sector soars to a two-year high

Activity in the services sector rose to a two-year high in August, giving a boost to optimistic forecasts for the UK's recovery from recession.

British recession is finally over, accountants claim

Latest surveys predict the return of growth but warn that recovery is fragile

Hopeful signs of a return to growth

Surveyors say property prices will end 2009 higher

Services sector stalls

The fragile state of the UK's economic recovery was shown today after it emerged recent progress in the services sector stalled during June.

Phlip Hensher: Students who think they can do no wrong

The student was in his third semester at university. He hadn't turned up to half the seminars he was supposed to and I hadn't seen his face more than once or twice at the compulsory lectures. Now he had made an outraged appointment to see me to ask why I'd given his end-of-module assignment a third.

Blanchflower calls for new fiscal stimulus to combat unemployment

David Blanchflower, the Monetary Policy Committee member who was the first to warn of the risk of a serious recession in the UK, last night warned that the current policy response, including the Bank of England's plans for "quantitative easing", might not be sufficient to achieve a recovery.

Service sector cuts jobs at record pace in January

The UK's service sector shed jobs at a record pace last month, adding to expectations of another hefty interest-rate cut from the Bank of England today.

Fed December minutes signalled recession and deflation fears

The threat of recession and the spectre of deflation haunted members of the Federal Reserve's interest rate-setting committee, according to the minutes of their historic December meeting.

England is Europe's most crowded country

England has become the most crowded major country in Europe, figures indicated today.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
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Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform