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Jones given £22m boost from LDC

Dark materials: How to find the best chocolate, bar none

Premium chocolate used to mean a box of Black Magic. Now true connoisseurs are just as discriminating as wine buffs – but not all fine confectionary is equal.

The Week Ahead: Barclays kicks off bank reporting season

The banking sector, which has been the centre of public attention as bonus season has got into full swing, will retain the limelight this week as Barclays issues its full-year results tomorrow.

Write a Valentine's message for your loved one to appear in The Independent

The Independent is offering its readers the opportunity to write a Valentine's Day message for their loved one to appear in the newspaper on 14 th Feburary 2010.

Currys owner trounces City forecasts with strong sales

DSGi sells one computer and one television every two seconds in UK at Christmas

Investment Column: Hold HSBC, the quality play among banks

IG Group; Thorntons

High street sees light at the end of tunnel at last

Store chains defy the downturn with increase in sales and profits

Share index back above 5000 after 11 months

London's FTSE 100 Index touched the 5000 mark for the first time in almost a year today as investor confidence showed little sign of waning.

The Week Ahead: Primark expected to beat growth forecasts

TODAY: Britain's battered high streets will be in focus at the beginning of a busy week when Associated British Foods provides a trading update.

Market expects good things from Primark and Morrisons

The resilience of the British consumer will be tested this week when a raft of retailers issue updates to the market.

Retailers record best sales for more than a year

CBI sees first rise in high street sales since early 2008

Hope on the High Street

Official figures show that retail sales are rising and several big names are prospering. So is the downturn over, asks James Thompson

Game and Thorntons hit sweet spot to boost retailers

The video game specialist Game Group posted record full-year profits yesterday, while the chocolatier Thorntons also revealed tasty third-quarter figures, providing further evidence that the retail sector's darkest days may just have passed.

Thorntons cuts staff costs as profits fall 40 per cent

The “vast majority” of staff at Thorntons have taken up its offer of flexible working this year, the confectioner said yesterday, as it revealed that hefty pre-Christmas discounting had dragged down its interim profits by nearly 40 per cent.

Andreas Whittam Smith: Amid the gloom and doom, I've a small piece of advice to offer

What should savers do now that inflation is dropping like a stone? Buy government bonds

Investment Column: Sales figures turn sour for Thorntons

Axis-Shield; Alexon
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?