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  1. E.On to pay £7m penalty for overcharging customers
  2. Ukraine agrees gas deal with Russia's Gazprom

Live Reporting

By Joe Miller

All times stated are UK

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Joe Miller

Business Reporter

That's all we have time for today. Business Live is taking a break over the Easter weekend, but fear not, we'll be back in action from 06:00 BST on Tuesday. Happy holidays to all.

Microsoft turns 40


It's a milestone that will make many of us feel very old, but Microsoft celebrates its 40th birthday this weekend. Shareholders, however, may be "looking back wistfully to their company's lost youth",

the Economist writes. "As people and businesses buy ever fewer, and cheaper, PCs, the revenues from Windows are falling."

Indiana about-face

Getty Images

Following a deluge of criticism from business leaders and campaigners,

lawmakers in Indiana have announced changes to a controversial religious freedom bill that many claimed would allow discrimination. The amendment prohibits businesses from using the law as a legal defence if they refuse to provide services to gays and lesbians, or other groups.

Via Twitter

Thunderbirds stunt


Thunderbirds stunt

tweets: Thunderbirds takes the plunge with Thames stunt

Cyprus' curious bond

World Service


You might have thought Russians would think twice about Cyprus after losing billions in 2013's bank collapse. But not so, it seems, with closer ties agreed only last month.

Business Daily has a report from the Mediterranean island.

Via Twitter

Michelle Fleury

BBC business correspondent, New York


Oil prices are lower ahead of Iran press conference. At one point Brent crude was down 4%

Via Twitter

Kamal Ahmed

BBC Business editor

Whoops. @AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot has withdrawn his name from the business letter supporting Conservatives

Athens' warning

Greece's finance ministry says it "categorically denies" a Reuters report that claimed Athens had warned the eurozone that it would run out of cash on 9 April. The news agency says it got the information from eurozone officials.

Market update

Here's how the US markets have fared thus far:

  • The
    Dow Jones is up 0.4% at 17,761.71
  • The
    S&P 500 is up 0.4% at 2,067.03
  • The tech-heavy
    Nasdaq is up 0.1% 4,885.73



An April Fool's parody may have briefly added millions to Tesla's value, after a couple of news organisations failed to get the joke. The Silicon Valley firm tweeted the line "

Announcing the Model W", a few minutes before yesterday's markets closed, which Reuters published as news. Tesla shares soon rose by 0.75%. "Nearly 400,000 shares traded in that time, and it was the heaviest one minute of trading volume in the stock since the opening 60 seconds of trading on Feb 12,"
the news agency says.

Via Twitter

Theo Leggett

Business reporter, BBC News

Marseilles prosecutor says flight data recorder of #flight9525 has been found

Via Twitter

Linda Yueh

Chief business correspondent

Some worrying headlines about Greece reforms not being ready, getting the list together by April 24 but there's also a April 9 debt payment?

Athens' warning


Greece will run out of cash by 9 April, Reuters reports, and the country's interior minister has warned that

he would have to choose between paying €450m to the IMF, or paying salaries and pensions. Nikos Voutsis told a teleconference of eurozone ministers yesterday that he would choose the latter, the news agency says.

Via Twitter

Douglas Fraser

Business and economy editor, Scotland

#Rangers kicked off AIM junior market of London Stock Exchange. Its reputation's too toxic: more complaints in a year than any other firm

Coke's values


Coca-Cola has weighed in on the debate surrounding "religious freedom" bills being introduced in some US states, which critics say allow for discrimination of gays and lesbians. Such legislation, the Atlanta-based firm said, "does not only violate our company's core values, but would also negatively affect our consumers, customers, suppliers, bottling partners and associates". On Tuesday, another corporate behemoth, Wal-Mart, announced its opposition to a bill in Arkansas.

Via Twitter

Zoe Kleinman

Technology reporter, BBC News

New curved Samsung 6 arrived in office. Opinion divided on curved edges (bit like an infinity pool IMO) - but real competition for iPhone 6

Joe Miller

Business Reporter

Thanks to Ben and Tom in London, I'm Joe Miller in New York and I'll be with you until 18:00 BST.

Seiken exits the Telegraph

Jason Seiken
Getty Images

The editor-in-chief of Telegraph Media Group, Jason Seiken, is moving on. He joined the newspaper from US TV channel PBS in 2013. Shortly after his arrival Telegraph editor Tony Gallagher was fired. The newspaper today said that Chris Evans would remain the editor of the Daily Telegraph.

ECB quantitative easing



minutes of the European Central Banks's monetary policy meeting on 4 and 5 March "should help to dampen suggestions that the recent signs of improvement in the eurozone economy will prompt the ECB to end its quantitative easing (QE) programme before the scheduled date of September 2016," says Capital Economics in a research note.

Via Blog

Marks and Spencer

Richard Hyman

Retail analyst

Is this the recovery of THE icon of UK retail?

In a word, no! At least not on the basis of one tiny snapshot measured against very weak comparatives.

Heathrow charge change

Plane, Heathrow

Heathrow has proposed reducing domestic passenger charges

by more than a third, but it wants to recoup the difference through increased environmental charges on airlines. It has proposed reducing passenger charges on domestic flights by £10 from 1 January 2016.

'Prudent optimism' ECB

euro sign
Getty Images

There is "prudent optimism" at the European Central Bank caused by "somewhat positive" data on economic activity. That's

emerged from notes on the ECB's monetary policy meeting on 4 and 5 of March, published today. It is "essential" for the ECB's governing council to"remain firm" in implementing the bank's asset-purchase plan the notes said.

Market update

FTSE 100

Share trading in London is a bit thin ahead of the Easter holiday break. There is some excitement around

Marks & Spencer - shares are up 5.6% following
an encouraging trading update. Mining shares continue to weigh on the
FTSE 100, with
BHP Billiton the biggest loser, down 2%. In Frankfurt,
Lufthansa is down the most on the Dax index, shares are 3% lower.

Greece debt talks

Plato statue and Greek flag, Athens

Greece's ability to pay back its IMF creditors is increasingly in doubt, according to a

blog post by eurosceptic think tank Open Europe. It says
documents leaked by the Financial Times last night show a "seeming reversal of previous reforms and includes little on pension and labour market reform".

Canaccord Genuity boss dies

Paul Reynolds, the chief executive of Canadian financial services firm Canaccord Genuity, has died in Kona, Hawaii, following complications related to a health incident while competing in a triathlon, the company says. He was 52 years old. He will be replaced by the firm's chairman, David Kassie.

Greece talks

Michel Sapin

The Greek government has made progress defining its reform proposals to EU and IMF creditors, but there's room for improvement, French finance minister Michel Sapin says. "There is progress with the last list... Is there a need for more progress? Yes - in the quantification of the measures," he tells reporters in Paris.

Via Twitter

Douglas Fraser

BBC Scotland business and economy editor

Brewdog Sao Paulo

tweets: BrewDog, Ellon punk brewer: 2014 turnover £18m to £30m, profit from £3m to £5m. 12 bars opened, this 1 in Sao Paulo

Greek borrowing costs rise

Greek 10 year bond yields

Greece sent a new list of reform measures to its creditors on Wednesday. It also had to deny that it would delay debt payments to the IMF if it didn't get fresh funds. The chart above shows the yield on 10-year Greek government bonds over three trading sessions. It indicates the interest rate the government would have to pay to borrow money. That rate has been rising as the bailout talks have dragged on.

Credit Suisse on UK election

George Osborne at the Britvic factory
Getty Images

Analysts at Credit Suisse have come up with their

forecast for the UK election. They see a 45% probability of a Conservative minority and a 40% probability of a Labour minority. Factors they consider important include: The experience of the 1992 election, when polls swung in the week before polling day; the personal approval rating of David Cameron; and the loss of support for UKIP. "Our key concern is the UK moving to a period of political instability with informal coalitions," Credit Suisse says.

Slump in iron ore price

Iron ore being transported at a port in Rizhao in east China"s Shandong province

Mining shares are among the biggest losers on the FTSE 100 this morning.

BHP Billiton is down 1.6% and
Antofagasta is 1.3% lower. On Wednesday, both companies shares were downgraded by analysts at JP Morgan. Also yesterday, Chinese iron ore prices fell 3.5% to below $50 a tonne. That's the lowest level since 2005, according to Bloomberg.

M&S: Conference call

M&S northwest london

M&S saw a 13.8% rise in online sales in the quarter. On the conference call, M&S chief executive Marc Bolland says that the company saw a 10% rise in the number of registered shoppers in the year, rising from 6 million to 6.6 million. The firm also saw a 9.7% rise in web traffic in the year.

M&S: Conference call

Easter eggs
Getty Images

On a conference call with analysts, Marks & Spencers chief executive Marc Bolland says the retailer is planning to its boost its appeal to shoppers in part by diversifying its clothing and food ranges. "Easter is bringing 48 new Easter eggs," he says and "different ranges of hot cross buns". Standard shopping items "are not so standard to us," he adds.

Wake up to Money: Listen again

Radio 5 live

Ford Capri

Wake up to Money did some time travelling this morning, by asking for items that listeners would like to bring back from the 1970s. Among the suggestions were Capri cars, Spangles (sweets) and presenter Mickey Clark's hair.

M&S results

Kiki Dee

M&S has been credited with turning around a long-term decline in sales partly by concentrating on a 1970's womenswear fashion revival. Pop singer Kiki Dee (here pictured in 1970) tells

Radio 5 live that she likes some M&S women's clothing, but "sometimes maybe they try too hard". "Some of M&S stuff is a little bit boring, a little bit straight - but some of the stuff they do well", she says.