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Provident Financial shares plunge on new profit warning

.news-vj-spw-wrapper{position:absolute;top:0;left:0;right:0;bottom:0} ]]> Shares in Provident Financial lost two thirds of their value on Tuesday after the doorstep lender issued its second profit warning in three months. The FTSE 100 company now expects to make losses of £80m to £120m after its debt collection rates fell to 57%, compared with a 90% rate in 2016. Bradford-based […]

Lidl tops Waitrose to become UK’s seventh biggest grocer

Image copyright AFP Lidl has beaten Waitrose to become the UK’s seventh largest supermarket chain, according to latest grocery market share figures. The German discount food retailer has increased its market share to 5.2%, up by 0.7% year-on-year, Kantar Worldpanel reports. Families are driving its sales as they tend to buy more items in one […]

China’s Great Wall eyes Fiat Chrysler bid

Image copyright FCA China’s Great Wall Motor is sizing up Fiat Chrysler, the Italian-American carmaker that also owns Jeep. A Great Wall official told Reuters it had “an intention to acquire” some or all of the world’s seventh-largest car maker. However, Fiat Chrysler said it was yet to receive an approach from Great Wall – […]

Would you live in a home the size of a Tube carriage?

Image copyright Zoopla Image caption Flats measuring 22 sq m – smaller than the average Travelodge hotel room – are on sale in Leicester The UK has seen a sharp rise in homes little bigger than a budget hotel room, according to consumer group Which?. The number of newly built micro-homes, which are smaller than […]

Cambridge University Press reverses China censorship move

Image copyright PA Cambridge University Press, the world’s oldest publishing house, has reversed a decision to censor content in China. The publisher had agreed to suppress access to hundreds of its own articles that dealt with subjects sensitive to the Chinese authorities, such as those about the Tiananmen Square massacre. The Chinese had said that […]

VW to relaunch Kombi van as electric vehicle

Image copyright vw Volkswagen plans to make a new electric van inspired by the one that spawned its much-loved camper. The last classic VW Kombi, or VW T2, was produced in Brazil in 2013 after safety standards there became too onerous for further adaptation. Its new microbus made its debut in January. VW says it […]

Debit and credit card use accelerates

Image copyright PA UK consumers increasingly turned to plastic in the spring and early summer, with figures showing a rise in the use of credit, debit and charge cards. The number of transactions grew by 12% in the year to the end of June, the highest annual rate since 2008, according to UK Finance. The […]

Crawford Falconer takes up post as UK’s top trade negotiator

Image caption Crawford Falconer, right, will begin his new job this week The man in charge of negotiating the UK’s trade deals once Brexit is finalised, starts his job this week. Crawford Falconer will take up the post of chief trade negotiation adviser at the Department for International Trade. Leaving the single market would mean […]

Parents on low incomes ‘can’t afford basics’

Image copyright Thinkstock Higher inflation and a freeze on state benefits mean low-income parents cannot meet the basic costs of raising a child, according to the Child Poverty Action Group. In its Cost of a Child in 2017 report, the charity says the cost of raising a child to the age of 18 for a […]

Company bosses ‘lack cyber-attack training’

Image copyright EPA Image caption The ransomware that attacked NHS computers is among the threats businesses face More than two thirds of companies say their directors have no training in responding to cyber-attacks, according to a government survey. Of 105 businesses in the FTSE 350 questioned, one in 10 revealed they have no plan to […]

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