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Live Reporting

By Tom Espiner

All times stated are UK

  1. Eurozone growth slows

    EY Item Club a dviser tweets

  2. McDonnnell: Top 5% will pay more

    Today Program

    BBC Radio 4

    John McDonnell

    (AFP / Getty Images) Copyright: AFP / Getty Images


    John McDonnell, shadow chancellor, has been speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today Program afterLabor launched its general election manifesto, promising to “transform” the UK and to renationalise rail , mail, water and energy.

    Mr McDonnell was asked who would pay for the proposed changes.

    “In terms of income tax, yes the top 5% will pay a bit more, actually not a great deal more, but they’ll pay a bit more. 95% of earners will not pay an increase in income tax rates or VAT or national insurance.

    “We ‘re being straight with people. We are reversing some of the corporation tax cuts that have been given away by the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats over the last ten years, because actually this argument you cut taxes to the corporations and they start investing it again actually hasn’t proved to be right “

  3. Hays Travel ‘no intention’ of selling

    Today Program

    (BBC Radio 4)

    John and Irene Hays of Hays Travel res cued 555 Thomas Cook shops

    Copyright: BBC

    Image caption: John and Irene Hays of Hays Travel rescued (Thomas Cook shops)

    When Thomas Cook collapsed its high street stores were bought by Sunderland-based family-owned travel agents Hays Travel. On ThursdayHays said it would hire another 1500 people to fill these stores and to beef up its headquarters.

    John Hays, chief executive of Hays, told BBC Radio 4’s Today Program: “We’ve got an urgent need for more people – so we’re recruiting hard, ”

    With sales more than £ 1bn a year, Mr Hays says the business is approached by private equity companies to sell more or less every week: “We’ve got no intention of doing that. We love the model that we’ve got.

    “All the profits that we’ve got, we can put back in the business. ”

    Mr Hays says people are still very keen to buy in travel agents – often after they have looked online or chatted with the company on social media.

    While package holidays remain popular, he says customers are now after a wide variety of holiday options – including trips further afield or cruises where they extend their time in the final destination by a few days.

  4. TSB: Cards can still be used

    TSB has sent this statement: “Some payments into TSB accounts have been delayed overnight and we are working to process these as soon as possible today.

    “We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused and will ensure customers are not left out of pocket.

    “If TSB customers need emergency cash or have any questions they can visit us in branch or contact us via the number on the back of their card.  

    “Customers can still use their cards to make payments or withdraw cash. ”

  5. Spending more

    Today Program

    (BBC Radio 4) **********


    money in a purse

    Copyright: Getty Images


    (Government) borrowing in October rose to its highest level in five years, official data showed on Thursday.

    The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said borrowing last month hit £ 11 .2bn, £ 2.3bn more than last year.

    Sterling might have been expected to fall, but didn’t. Monique Wong, senior portfolio manager at Coutts, told BBC Radio 4’s Today that the general election has included plans by the political parties to spend more.

    “More spending is the direction travel. I think investors are thinking the likely outcome is a Conversative majority – the markets largely think Boris Johnson will be prime minister that his Brexit bill will become law, the spending plans will be seen as boost to economic growth, so that will be positive for sterling, “she said.

  6. TSB offers emergency cash

  7. TSB warns payments delayed

  8. London open


    Copyright: Getty Images

    Trading is getting underway in London. The FTSE 100 is starting around 30 points higher at 7, 267. 86. Miners BHP and Rio Tinto are the biggest gainers while the fallers are led by Berkeley Group.

    The FTSE 250 is down 20 points at 20, 349. The biggest gainer is Mediclinic International, up 2%, while Coats is leading the fallers, off 9%.

  9. Building a business while homeless

    (BBC presenter tweets)

    BBC Radio 5 Live

  10. Germany avoids recession

    steel worker

    (EPA)Copyright: EPA

    Germany has avoided a recession after detailed data showed its economy grew by 0.1% in the third quarter.

    (The data) confirmed a reading earlier this monthshowing that it had avoided two consecutive quarters of declining economic activity – a recession.

    There had been talk that Europe’s biggest economy could slide into recession after it contrac ted by 0.2% in the second quarter.

  11. Nationwide boss on pay

    Today Program

    (BBC Radio 4) **********

    house signs

    (AFP)Copyright: AFP

    When asked about the Conservative plan for lifetime mortgages, where people fix their rates for 25 years, Nationwide’s Joe Garner told BBC’s Radio 4’s Today Program: “There are already some 10 – year mortgages out there and they don’t prove massively popular at the moment because let’s face it, 25 years is a long time in the future to see. ”

    He was also pressed on whether his £ 2.3m pay package is too high for a mutual, which is run for the benefit of its members rather than shareholders:

    “The board chooses to pay the senior executive of Nationwide less than our competition.

    “Every year our members vote on our pay policy and last year 91% voted in favor of it, including my pay. ”

  12. Nationwide counts PPI costs


    (PA Media)Copyright: PA Media

    One of the reasons for the big fall in profits at the Nationwide was another chunk of money beingput towards paying compensation for Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) mis-selling.

    In the latest results, Nationwide said it had taken a charge of £ 36 m following the last-minute surge of complaints before the 29 August deadline for PPI claims.

    In September, the building society said this la te surge would cost it between £ 20 m and £ 50 m.

    Nationwide said this latest charge brought the cumulative cost of PPI to the society to £ 473 m.

  13. Nationwide: Not everything is down

    Today Program

    BBC Radio 4

    More on Nationwide, the countr y’s third biggest mortgage lender, after the release of its half-year results which showed profits down from £ 516 m this time last year, to £ 309 M.

    Joe Garner, chief executive, told BBC Radio 4’s Today Program that it was not all bad news and a number of things are up, such as membership, mortgages and savings balances.

    Explaining the profit dip, Mr Garner says this is because the building society is paying money to savers, investing in the future of the society and putting money aside for inflation.

  14. Japanese shares close higher

    Japan’s benchmark Nikkei index gained 0. 32 percent to close at 23, 112. 88.

    The average gains finish a lackluster few days for the index, which slipped 0. 82 percent over the week.

    Most of the region’s share markets are slightly higher today, except for China’s mainland indexes, which have tracked lower.

  15. Nationwide profits fall


    (Getty Images)Copyright: Getty Images

    Profits have fallen sharply at Nationwide which the building society says is due to a combination of lower income, increased investment costs and additional PPI charges.

    Statutory profit for the six months to 30 September fell to £ 309 m, from £ 516 ma year earlier.

    Nationwide said that while the UK’s economy had slowed as a result of weaker global growth and Brexit uncertainty, it added “household spending has remained relatively solid, and housing market activity broadly stable at subdued levels”.

    “Whilst the economic outlook remains uncertain, we expect the current low interest rates and competition in our cor e markets to continue. “

  16. New chair for Rightmove


    Copyright: Getty Images

    Rightmove – which describes itself as UK’s number one property portal – has named Andrew Fisher as non-executive chairman. He will take over on 1 January 2020 when Scott Forbes retires after more than 14 years as chairman.

  17. New boss for Land Securities

    Land Securities has named that Mark Allan as its chief executive, a role he currently holds at St Modwen Properties.

    He will take up the new role, and become an executive director “no later than 1 June 2020 “.

    Robert Noel will continue as chief executive “for the time being” and a further announcement will be made in due course about his leaving date, the company said.

  18. Hydrocarbons won’t go away

    Today Program

    BBC Radio 4

    oil rig

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Jonny Marshall, head of analysis at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit also spoke to the Today Program about the oil and gas industry

    “We still will have demand for hydrocarbons going forward but it will be notably different to what it is now, ”he says, with the UK moving away from using natural gas to generate electricity and heat homes, and move away from petrol and diesel to power our cars.

    There is also a fear we may just end up importing hydrocarbons, if production is merely diverted away from the North Sea.

    “That’s definitely more likely,” says Mr Marshall.

    He says it might make sense for North Sea workers to retrain in the off-shore wind sector, as there are a lot of transferable skills.

  19. Oil industry ‘fragile’

    Today Program

    (BBC Radio 4)

    Labor has pledged to pay £ 11 bn to retrain North Sea workers to get them into green energy, while also pledging to put a windfall tax of the same amount on the oil industry.

    So what does the industry make of it?

    Deidre Michie, chief Eeecutive of Oil & Gas UK, has just told the Today Program this tax would be a challeng: “Our industry is still fragile: we’re still coming out of the downturn. ”

    Production peaked in 1999 at 3m barrel s a day. Today it produces less than 1m barrels.

    Ms Michie says the UK still requires oil and gas in the future.

  20. Chinese national accused of stealing secrets from Monsanto

    A tractor sprays chemicals on a field.

    Copyright: Getty Images

    A Chinese national has been indicted by a US federal grand jury over an alleged plan to steal trade secrets from agriculture giant Monsanto.

    According to the indictment, Haitao Xiang was employed by Monsanto and its subsidiary The Climate Corporation from 2008 to 2017.

    It’s alleged he attempted to leave the country with a proprietary algorithm known as the “Nutrient Optimizer”, but was caught at the airport before he could leave.