Category Archives: Business

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European shares lifted by surge in Italian banks

European shares rose on Monday as funding plans from the European Central Bank for the region’s lenders buoyed markets, while Italian banking stocks surged on the prospect of a possible rescue deal. The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which had climbed 2.7 percent on Friday, was up 1 percent while the euro zone’s blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index also advanced 1.2 Read More


UK trade deficit narrows in January

The UK’s trade deficit narrowed in January, official figures show, but its goods trade gap with the EU widened to a record level. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the total trade deficit – covering goods and services – shrank to £3.5bn from £3.7bn in December. The deficit in goods alone narrowed to £10.29bn – down from £10.45bn the Read More


Japan’s stocks lead gains in Asia on Monday

Stocks in Japan and China led gains on Monday, extending a rally on Wall Street which closed at its highest level so far this year on Friday. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 finished the session up 1.75% to 17,233.75 points. Investor sentiment in Japan was given a boost as official machinery orders data showed a 15% jump in January from December, beating Read More


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European shares lifted by surge in Italian banks

European shares rose on Monday as funding plans from the European Central Bank for the region’s lenders buoyed markets, while Italian banking stocks surged on the prospect of a possible rescue deal. The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which had climbed 2.7 percent on Friday, was up 1 percent while the euro zone’s blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index also advanced 1.2 Read More


Oil price ‘may have bottomed out’

Lower oil output in the US will help to stabilise oil prices this year, the IEA said There is evidence that oil prices are stabilising and could even begin to rise again, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has said. It said lower oil output in the US and other countries was helping to curb the glut in the supply of Read More


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India delays plans to open up coal sector to private firms

India will delay opening commercial coal mining to private companies due to lower-than-expected demand for the fuel, a government official said, which could make it difficult for the country to meet ambitious output targets. The world’s third-largest coal importer wants private companies to contribute about a third of an annual production target of 1.5 billion tonnes by 2020, but the Read More


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India’s wholesale prices fall for 16th straight month in Feb

India’s wholesale prices fell for a 16th straight month in February, declining an annual 0.91 percent, driven down by tumbling oil prices, government data showed on Monday. The pace of fall was faster than a 0.27 percent annual decline forecast by economists in a Reuters poll. In January, the index fell a provisional 0.90 percent. The wholesale fuel prices dropped Read More


China economy: Slow output fuels global economic recovery fears

China’s industrial output has slowed to its weakest growth since the financial crisis, prompting concerns over the global recovery. Production rose by 5.4% in January and February – the worst since 2008. China is trying to refocus its economy from investment and export-led growth to consumer spending. UK finance minister George Osborne said China’s slowdown is one of a “dangerous Read More


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G4S warns of potential £57m loss over asylum-seeker housing deal

The private security giant G4S has warned its shareholders that it may lose £57m if the Home Office extends its contract to house destitute asylum seekers for a further two years. The warning came as its shares dropped by more than 10% after reporting a 40% fall in its pre-tax profits due to rising losses on a series of contracts Read More


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Gin consumption soars amid boom in new UK distilleries

The British gin industry had a record-breaking year in 2015 after 49 new distilleries opened their doors and and consumers spent nearly £1bn on their favourite tipple. The value of gin sold in the UK’s supermarkets and off-licences hit the £400m mark for the first time while sales topped £500m in pubs, restaurants and bars, according to a report from Read More