• Key workers should get priority access to cheaper housing in the capital, London's mayor has suggested Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 14:02

    Key workers should get priority access to cheaper housing in the capital, London's mayor has suggested.

    Under the proposals, workers such as nurses, police officers and teachers would be given priority for shared ownership homes and property offered at the London Living Rent.

    Sadiq Khan said key workers "keep London running" but "housing costs have driven far too many Londoners away".

    The Conservatives called the plans "another PR distraction" by the mayor.

    The idea is part of a wider consultation looking at "intermediate housing" for people who are unlikely to get homes at social rent levels, but cannot afford to buy or rent them on the open market.

  • RT @bbc5live: “If they close pubs down again it won’t be 30% pubs that go out of business, it’ll be 70%” @hughosmond tells @Emmabarnett th…
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 11:52
  • Dixons Carphone to cut 800 store management jobs Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 11:32

    Dixons Carphone said it plans to cut 800 jobs as part of efforts to streamline its in-store management.

    The Currys PC World owner it was "not an easy decision" but the move would allow a "flatter management structure" as it adapts to rising online sales.

    It takes the tally of UK jobs put at risk this week to 3,600 after shake-up at Pizza Express and DW Sports.

    Dixons Carphone had already made redundancies before lockdown, when it closed its Carphone Warehouse stores.

    Dixons Carphone chief operating officer Mark Allsop said: "We'll do everything possible to look after those colleagues we can't find new roles for, financially and otherwise."

  • Pizza Express may close 67 outlets and cut 1,100 jobs Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 10:07

    Pizza Express is considering closing 15% of its UK restaurants, which would mean the loss of 1,100 jobs.

    The chain is the latest High Street outlet to undertake a restructuring of its business after trading was halted by the coronavirus pandemic.

    It is poised to launch a Company Voluntary Arrangement deal in the near future, which could mean 67 of its 449 outlets will close.

    But it said the final outcome of the restructuring has "yet to be decided".

    The company closed all its UK restaurants on 23 March after the Government-mandated lockdown.

  • In Japan, you can pay private agents called ‘wakaresaseya’ to seduce your spouse or their partner Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 10:02

    In 2010, Takeshi Kuwabara was sentenced for the murder of his lover, Rie Isohata. What captured the world’s imagination was not the tragedy itself, but the fact that Kuwabara was a wakaresaseya – a professional hired by Isohata’s husband to break up their marriage.

    The wakaresaseya agent Kuwabara, who was married with children himself, engineered a meeting with Isohata in a supermarket. He claimed to be a single IT worker, which his nerdy, bespectacled appearance may have helped with. The two began an affair, which eventually led to a genuine relationship. Meanwhile, a colleague of Kuwabara’s photographed them in a love hotel, and Isohata’s husband used these photographs as evidence for a divorce. (Such evidence is needed when a Japanese divorce is contested.)

    Once Isohata learned of the deception, she angrily attempted to break off the relationship with Kuwabara. Unwilling to let her go, he strangled her with a piece of string. The following year, he was...

  • EasyJet increases flights to cope with holidaymaker demand Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 09:07

    EasyJet is adding more flights to cope with increasing demand from holidaymakers.

    The airline had expected to operate at just 30% of its normal capacity, but is expanding its schedule to 40% as more people look to escape lockdown.

    It restarted flying in June and carried over two million passengers in July.

    "Returning to the skies again allows us to do what we do best and take our customers on much-needed holidays," said boss Johan Lundgren.

    "I am really encouraged that we have seen higher than expected levels of demand with load factor of 84% in July with destinations like Faro and Nice remaining popular with customers."

  • Spain's former King Juan Carlos has left the country for an unknown destination, weeks after he was linked to an inquiry into alleged corruption Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 08:12

    Spain's former King Juan Carlos has left the country for an unknown destination, weeks after he was linked to an inquiry into alleged corruption.

    Juan Carlos, 82, announced the move on Monday in a letter to his son, Felipe, to whom he handed power six years ago.

    He said he would be available if prosecutors needed to interview him.

    In June, Spain's Supreme Court opened an investigation into the alleged involvement of Juan Carlos in a high-speed rail contract in Saudi Arabia.

    The former king had most likely already left when the letter was released on Monday, Spain's El País newspaper reports. It is unclear where Juan Carlos is, though some Spanish media report he is in the Dominican Republic.

  • RT @bbckamal: The Great Dividend Collapse. BP cuts dividend in half. Others in top 10 payers - Shell: dividend cut for first time since Wor…
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 08:07
  • Are the security concerns about Chinese-owned platform TikTok well founded or more geopolitical? Plus Hays Travel redundancies and the markets on Tuesday's business with @kprescott Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:42
  • RT @BBCBusiness: Virtual house hunting gets a pandemic boost Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:42

    It's Saturday evening in London, and I'm house shopping in Dublin, thanks to a virtual-reality headset.

    Temporarily forgetting she is sitting beside me, I shout to my wife: "I'm in the children's bedroom."

    We can't go to the Republic of Ireland ourselves to do this. Travellers from Great Britain need to restrict their movements for a fortnight, so nipping over and back is off the cards.

    But I can take several paces through a virtual seaside flat in Dublin's Dún Laoghaire, while based in our south London home.

    Circles appear on the floor of the Dublin flat and, using hand controls, I can glide between them and explore.

  • RT @BBCWorld: Ireland to decide on Phase 4 reopening on easing lockdown Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:42

    The Republic of Ireland's National Public Health Emergency Team is due to meet on Tuesday morning.

    The cabinet is scheduled to meet in the afternoon.

    In Northern Ireland, "wet pubs" - or pubs that do not serve food - have been given an indicative date to reopen from Monday 10 August, but this is yet to be signed off by the Stormont Executive.

    On Monday, the Department of Health in the Republic of Ireland reported 46 new cases of Covid-19.

    There have been 1,763 deaths related to coronavirus, with a total of 26,208 confirmed cases of the virus in the Republic of Ireland.

    In Northern Ireland, the total number of positive cases now stands at 5,988, while the Department of Health's death toll remains at at 556.

  • RT @zsk: So if Microsoft doesn't buy TikTok, the app gets a US ban, and if it does... Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:42

    Donald Trump says the government should get a cut from the sale of TikTok's US unit if an American firm buys it.

    The US president said he made a demand for a "substantial portion" of the purchase price in a phone call at the weekend with Microsoft's boss.

    He also warned he will ban the app, which is owned by China's ByteDance, on 15 September if there is no deal.

    ByteDance is under pressure to sell its US business after Mr Trump threatened a crackdown on Chinese tech companies.

  • RT @BBCBreakfast: This morning oil giant, BP has announced a loss of £5.1 billion. @NinaWarhurst spoke to #BBCBreakfast about the announcem…
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:32
  • BP cuts dividend as losses swell on poor oil demand Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:32

    BP has halved its dividend and reported a record $6.7bn quarterly loss after the coronavirus pandemic hit global demand for oil.

    The dividend cut is a blow for UK pension funds, many of whom have large shareholdings in BP.

    The loss was largely due to BP writing down the value of its assets after it cut its oil price forecasts.

    The FTSE 100 company said the outlook for oil prices and demand "remains challenging and uncertain".

    It also warned that the pandemic could weigh on the global economy for a "sustained period".

  • AA motoring group in takeover talks with three suitors Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 07:17

    The AA says it has received takeover approaches from three parties who are interested in buying the motoring group.

    The business, founded in 1905, has £2.65bn in debt and wants to raise funds.

    It is also considering staying with its current ownership and raising the money itself from shareholders.

    The AA has 2,700 roadside assistance patrol vehicles and also provides insurance and driving lessons.

    It said there was no certainty that any of the approaches would lead to an offer.

  • Boeing's 737 Max moves closer to flying again Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 04:36

    A wide-ranging list of changes to Boeing’s ill-fated 737 Max planes has been put forward by US regulators.

    The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) document details actions it wants to be made before the planes can fly again commercially.

    The 737 Max has been grounded since March 2019 following two fatal crashes which killed 346 people.

    Boeing hopes to get the 737 Max back in the air early next year after the changes are made.

    Proposed changes include updating flight control software, revising crew procedures and rerouting internal wiring.

  • Donald Trump: US Treasury should get cut of TikTok deal Link
    BBC Business Tue 04 Aug 2020 03:16

    Donald Trump has said the US should get a cut from the sale of TikTok's US unit if it is bought by an American firm.

    The US president said he made a demand for a "substantial portion" of the purchase price in a phone call at the weekend with Microsoft's boss.

    He also warned he will ban the app, which is owned by China's ByteDance, on 15 September if there isn't a deal.

    ByteDance is under pressure to sell its US business after Mr Trump threatened a crackdown on Chinese tech companies.

    The Trump administration has accused TikTok and others of providing data to the Chinese government - which Beijing and TikTok deny.

  • Virtual house hunting gets a pandemic boost Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 23:06

    It's Saturday evening in London, and I'm house shopping in Dublin, thanks to a virtual-reality headset.

    Temporarily forgetting she is sitting beside me, I shout to my wife: "I'm in the children's bedroom."

    We can't go to the Republic of Ireland ourselves to do this. Travellers from Great Britain need to restrict their movements for a fortnight, so nipping over and back is off the cards.

    But I can take several paces through a virtual seaside flat in Dublin's Dún Laoghaire, while based in our south London home.

    Circles appear on the floor of the Dublin flat and, using hand controls, I can glide between them and explore.

  • RT @concertina226: The owners of @HaysTravel have just been on BBC News. Here's our story for @BBCBusiness, which I've contributed to?? ? :…
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 19:05
  • Government urges post-Brexit drug stockpiles Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 17:15

    The government has urged pharmaceutical firms to have six weeks' worth of drugs stockpiled, in readiness for the end of the Brexit transition period.

    In a letter to medical suppliers, the Department of Health and Social Care said there would be no extension to the transition period after 31 December.

    The DHSC acknowledged that global supply chains were under pressure because of the coronavirus crisis.

    But it said having reserve stocks would provide a buffer against disruption.

    "To build upon past work and ensure a co-ordinated approach, we will be asking suppliers to confirm their contingency plans for the end of the [transition period]," the department's letter said.

  • Drayton Manor theme park enters administration Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 16:20

    A family-run theme park says it has entered administration after being hit by Storm Dennis and then coronavirus.

    Drayton Manor, in Tamworth, has been run by three generations of the Bryan family since opening in 1950.

    It has been sold to Looping Group which runs a number of attractions in Europe and the UK, including West Midlands Safari Park and Pleasurewood Hills.

    About 600 people were employed at the Staffordshire Park and their jobs have been protected, administrators said.

    The Drayton Manor group, which owns a catering and hotels company alongside the theme park, has been facing "exceptionally challenging conditions," Mike Denny, from administrators PwC, said.

  • Hays Travel 'devastated' as announces 878 job cuts Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 15:45

    The firm which bought Thomas Cook shops has said up to 878 employees out of 4,500 may lose their jobs due to new coronavirus travel restrictions.

    Hays Travel took on more than 2,000 former Thomas Cook employees when it went bust in October last year.

    Owners John and Irene Hays said Spanish travel restrictions meant hundreds of thousands of holidays were cancelled.

    They were "devastated" staff would lose jobs "through no fault of their own," they couple said.

    In a joint statement, the Hays said they had "made every possible effort to protect the jobs of all 4,500 staff, including those who were employed when Hays Travel took on the Thomas Cook shops last October."

  • Restrictions on daily life in many parts of the UK - to try to curb the spread of coronavirus - have been eased in recent weeks Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 15:00

    Restrictions on daily life in many parts of the UK - to try to curb the spread of coronavirus - have been eased in recent weeks.

    Employers in England can bring staff back to the workplace and people can use public transport for non-essential journeys (while wearing face coverings).

    Many pubs, shops and restaurants have reopened, while most of those who have been shielding are no longer advised to stay at home.

    There are places where the easing of lockdown measures has been halted - Leicester and Greater Manchester, for example.

    But, overall, how have people in the UK responded?

  • How can I use the 'eat out to help out scheme'? Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 13:40

    Diners can now get up to 50% off their bill to encourage a return to cafes, pubs and restaurants.

    It's hoped the ''eat out to help out'' initiative will boost the struggling hospitality industry, now that the national lockdown is easing.

    But the scheme, which launched alongside the government's healthy eating strategy, has been criticised by anti-obesity campaigners.

  • Melbourne is shutting down shops, factories and other non-essential businesses as authorities fight a second wave of coronavirus Link
    BBC Business Mon 03 Aug 2020 13:05

    Melbourne is shutting down shops, factories and other non-essential businesses as authorities fight a second wave of coronavirus.

    Other measures include a night-time curfew for the city's five million residents, after an earlier lockdown failed to contain the virus.

    About one million workers will soon be staying at home in the Australian city.

    A payment for people instructed to isolate for 14 days who have run out of sick leave will also be introduced.

    The A$1,500 ($1,070; £815) is mainly aimed at those who cannot access other benefits, and can be applied for more than once, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.

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