Category: <span>Markets</span>

UK retail sales plunge as government borrows £8.8bn
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UK retail sales plunge as government borrows £8.8bn

The impact of the UK’s third lockdown on the economy has been laid bare by official figures showing that spending in stores and online fell by more than 8% last month while government borrowing was the highest for a January since modern records began. All sectors of retailing except for food and online outlets were affected by...

Next shares near all-time high as sales hold up during pandemic
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Next shares near all-time high as sales hold up during pandemic

Shares in the UK clothing retailer Next are close to an all-time high, thanks to a strategy that has seen the company sail through Covid-19 headwinds. With the start of the first lockdown last March, Next feared shuttering its high street stores would have a disastrous impact on finances. But sales have held up better than anticipated, bolstered by...

Eurozone crisis: Single currency is a ‘disaster’ which has left EU banks in a ‘doom loop’
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Eurozone crisis: Single currency is a ‘disaster’ which has left EU banks in a ‘doom loop’

EU banks have been left in a ‘death loop’ as a result of the introduction of the euro, the bloc’s currency, an economist has claimed. Professor David Blake said the current situation also means Germany is owed more than £950billion it can never recover, and Italy and Spain each owing hundreds of billions which they can never repay. Prof...

Billionaire brothers behind B&M take £30m payout after Christmas boom
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Billionaire brothers behind B&M take £30m payout after Christmas boom

The billionaire Arora brothers who own B&M have handed themselves a £30m payout after the fast-growing discount retailer reported booming sales in the run-up to Christmas. The latest payment follows a £44m payout to the brothers two months ago, and another big payout last spring, and means that in total they have received dividends worth almost £100m...

Aldi UK enjoys sparkling Christmas as champagne sales soar
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Aldi UK enjoys sparkling Christmas as champagne sales soar

Aldi UK has reported a record Christmas performance, with sales rising 10.6% year-on-year in the four weeks to 24 December boosted by demand for premium products and champagne. All UK supermarket groups benefited in the run-up to Christmas from unprecedented demand due to the Covid-19 pandemic, driven by a large part of the population working...

UK economic outlook for 2021: Covid surge deepens the gloom
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UK economic outlook for 2021: Covid surge deepens the gloom

The UK economy begins 2021 on the back foot as record numbers of coronavirus infections and tougher restrictions cloud the outlook for growth and limit the chances of a rapid recovery from the country’s worst recession in 300 years. There had been hopes that the arrival of successful Covid vaccines could prompt a rebound in...

Covid led to huge London property exodus, says Hamptons
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Covid led to huge London property exodus, says Hamptons

London leavers bought 73,950 homes outside the capital in 2020, as the coronavirus pandemic led the biggest exodus from London in four years. People from London bought homes worth a collective £27.6bn over the course of the year – the largest amount spent since 2007, according to research by the estate agent Hamptons. The dash for property...

Sainsbury’s says France ban could lead to UK food shortages
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Sainsbury’s says France ban could lead to UK food shortages

Sainsbury’s has warned shoppers of shortages of lettuce, broccoli and citrus fruit in the run-up to Christmas, after France banned hauliers carrying freight across the Channel amid fears over the new coronavirus strain. The supermarket said the ingredients for a traditional Christmas lunch were already in the country and available, but shelves could be empty of some...

Government plans to recoup £26bn of losses on Covid loans ‘woefully underdeveloped’, says committee
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Government plans to recoup £26bn of losses on Covid loans ‘woefully underdeveloped’, says committee

Plans to recoup an estimated £26bn of fraud and defaults on coronavirus loans to businesses are “woefully underdeveloped”, an influential committee of MPs has said. Losses on the government-backed loans could be higher than £26bn because the government has not properly assessed the extent of potential fraud on the schemes, according to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC). Its report found that the...

Bank of England explores easier options for getting a mortgage
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Bank of England explores easier options for getting a mortgage

The Bank of England is exploring options to make it easier to get a mortgage, on the back of concerns that many first-time buyers have been locked out of the property market during the coronavirus pandemic. Threadneedle Street said it was undertaking a review of its mortgage market recommendations – affordability criteria that set a cap on...