Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Summary

  1. US markets continue losing streak into Friday
  2. FTSE ends the day up by 1.2%
  3. HSBC settles $1.6bn lawsuit over Household International
  4. Chinese patent ruling over iPhone 6 hits Apple shares
  5. Ericsson investigated in US on corruption allegations
  6. Revlon buys Elizabeth Arden

Live Reporting

By Bill Wilson and Andreas Illmer

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good night

That is all from us here at Business Live for this week. Join us again bright and early on Monday morning.

Gold adds shine ahead of EU vote

Gold bars
Reuters

Gold prices hit a near two-year high this week as investors sought out safe investment havens ahead of the vote in the UK next week about future EU membership.

On Thursday the precious metal hit $1,315.71 an ounce, its highest since August 2014. 

Gold fell back on Friday to stand at $1,287.58 an ounce, but was still ahead for the week. 

US markets close down

Wall Street continued its lacklustre performance so far this week, as markets slipped further behind on Friday.

Apple dragged down all three major US stock indexes, as it fell by 2.28% after a patent dispute went against it in China.

The Dow Jones fell 58.07 points, or 0.33%, to 17,675.03

Meanwhile the broader Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 6.76 points, or 0.33%, to 2,071.23, and the tech-based Nasdaq fell 44.58 points, or 0.92%, to 4,800.34.

Sterling rebounds amid torrid markets

Sterling has risen more than 1% against the dollar to stand at $1.4354 amid market turbulence surrounding the upcoming UK referendum on whether to stay in the EU.

The pound had tumbled earlier in the week, getting close to $1.40.

Rogue trader Kerviel 'should not be liable'

Jerome Kerviel
AFP

A French public prosecutor has said that disgraced former Societe Generale trader Jerome Kerviel should not have to pay any damages for the massive losses he caused.

SocGen has claimed a €2.2bn tax deduction over the losses. 

At a Versailles court the prosecutor said his recommendation was based on a view that lax controls at the bank allowed Kerviel to commit his fraud. 

A judge is expected to rule on the case on 23 September. 

Kerviel was sentenced to three years in prison after conviction for breach of trust and fraud over €4.9bn of losses from his trades. 

'Made in Switzerland'

Moves to keep watch industry ticking over

An apprentice works on a Swiss watch
Reuters

Switzerland has adopted regulations requiring that locally-made watch parts make up at least 60% of the value of a timepiece before it can be labelled "Swiss Made".

The change comes into effect on 1 January.  

It expands the parts-percentage-criteria from just the main mechanism to all parts, and it also increases the minimum value  of the parts from their present 50% threshold.

Is Uber fighting losing battle in China?

The FT tweets...

Uber is losing $1bn a year in its battle to conquer China. But is it working? (free to read) on.ft.com/1XZoolw

Uber is losing $1bn a year in its battle to conquer China. But is it working? (free to read) on.ft.com/1XZoolw

"The work doesn't have much purpose"

Why some graduates drop out of investment banking careers early.

Scotland's new energy: The answer is blowing in the wind?

BBC Scotland Business Editor Douglas Fraser tweets...

Whatever happened to Scotland's "new industrial revolution" from renewable energy? The wind changed. Blogged: bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotla…

Plastic at 50 on BBC Radio 4 this Sunday

BBC Business Editor Kamal Ahmed tweets...

The credit card at 50 and why it changed the world. My documentary @BBCRadio4 bbc.in/1WQEVas Sunday, 1.30pm. Mini-skirts included

Doors start to close on flagship BHS store

BBC Business Correspondent Emma Simpson tweets...

The closing signs are now up at #BHS flagship London store.

The closing signs are now up at #BHS flagship London store.

FTSE and gold both up

Gold bars
Reuters

London's FTSE 100 has closed the day with a solid gain of 1.2%, up by 70.61 points, at 6,021.09 points. 

It comes after a week where it has been bumping along under the 6,000 mark. 

Both sterling and bond yields rose on Friday while gold also continued its rally in the face of uncertainty around next week's EU referendum in the UK. 

The precious metal was on track for a third week of gains.

EU tackles corporate tax dodgers

Euro notes
AFP

EU member states have agreed on a preliminary deal to combat corporate tax avoidance. 

The bloc had been under renewed pressure to reach a deal in the wake of revelations from the Panama Papers and Luxleaks cases.

Corporate tax practices are estimated to cost EU states around 70bn euros ($76.10bn; £53.3bn) a year in lost revenues.

Some critics say the deal is watered down from its original proposals, and is not as effective against corporate tax dodgers as had been hoped.

The deal is suspended until Monday. If no country raises objections by then, the agreement will take effect. 

Apple drags US stocks lower

Apple stock graph
BBC

Wall Street continued its lacklustre performance so far this week, as markets slipped further behind on Friday.

Apple dragged down all three major US stock indexes, as it fell by 2.25% after a patent dispute went against it in China.

The Dow Jones fell 76 points, or 0.4%, to 17657.32

Meanwhile the broader Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 9 points, or 0.45%, to 2,068 and the tech-based Nasdaq fell 39 points, or 0.8%, to 4,806.

DiCaprio to testify in Wall Street case

The film was nominated for five Oscars in 2014
AP

A judge has ordered Leonardo DiCaprio to testify in court in the case brought by an ex-stockbroker who alleges The Wolf of Wall Street depicted him as a "depraved" drug-fuelled criminal.

Andrew Greene claims the character Nicky "Rugrat" Koskoff is based on him.

Mr Greene worked at Stratton Oakmont, the brokerage house founded by Jordan Belfort, played by DiCaprio.

The judge granted Mr Greene's motion to compel a deposition in New York on Thursday, Hollywood Reporter said.

Fresh cash for Athens

EU and Greek flags
AFP

A welcome breath of oxygen for the Greek economy.

Pierre Moscovici, EU Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs

The eurozone's bailout fund has approved a fresh tranche of money for debt ridden Greece.

The amount of 7.5bn euros (£5.9bn; $8.4bn) is scheduled to be paid out early next week and is part of a larger deal agreed on in May. Final approval by the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) though still depended on a number of reform conditions which have now been fulfilled. 

The country is in urgent need of the fresh money from Europe to service two debt payments to the European Central Bank next month.  

Greece owes its creditors more than €300bn - about 180% of its annual economic output (GDP). 

Beijing orders halt to iPhone 6 sales

The Wall Street Journal tweets...

Breaking: Beijing says iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus infringe on Chinese patent, orders sales halted in city on.wsj.com/1rtdR3j

Revlon to buy Elizabeth Arden for $870m

Taylor Swift
Getty Images

Revlon, known for its make-up and hair care products, has agreed to buy Elizabeth Arden in a $870m (£609m) deal.

Revlon hopes the acquisition will expand its global footprint.

Elizabeth Arden, famous for its Eight Hour Cream and Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber fragrances, has a strong presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

Revlon's boss described the firm as "one of the last independent, iconic brands in the cosmetics industry."

Juventus signs deal with IMG

Juventus players celebrate lifting the Italian Cup
Getty Images

International sports marketing agency IMG has signed a licensing deal with Italian football's Serie A champions Juventus.

As well as winning the league Juve also won the Coppa Italia to secure the domestic double.

The club has a large potential fan base in East Asia, which is where the deal is largely focused. 

MG will represent the Turin club on an exclusive basis in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau and Taiwan in Asia, and also Australia and New Zealand in Oceania.

Ericsson in US corruption probe

Ericsson flag
AFP

Swedish telecoms company Ericsson has confirmed it is being investigated in the US over corruption allegations. 

The company's statement gives few details other than that it is facing questions related to the "Foreign Corrupt Practices Act". 

It comes after Swedish media reported on Thursday that Ericsson was being probed in the US over allegations of corruption at its Chinese operations. 

Chemicals giant BASF in $3.2bn deal

BASF logo
AFP

German chemicals giant BASF is ready to spend $3.2bn (£2.2bn) to expand its coatings business. The company has struck a deal with Albemarle Corp to buy the US firm's surface treatment unit. 

Pending regulatory approval, BASF is prepared to pay in cash and expects to complete the deal before the end of the year. 

Philadelphia imposes sugar tax on drinks

Softdrink
Thinkstock

Fond of sugary snacks and drinks? Well, if you're in Philadelphia, it's going to cost you a little extra from now on. 

Philadelphia has voted to tax sugary drinks and it's the first big US city to do so. The tax will affect all sweetened drinks - including the light versions with artificial sweetener and pre-sweetened coffee and tea. 

The vote was pushed through despite strong opposition from the drinks industry. 

The much smaller town of Berkeley in California is the only other city in America to tax soft drinks so far. 

In May, the UK announced a tax on sugary drinks hailed by campaigners as a significant step in the fight against child obesity.

Pound recovers week's losses

Pound compared with US dollar chart
Bloomberg

The pound is back where it started the week. 

Sterling began trading at around $1.4270 early on Monday, before falling more than two cents during the week amid concerns about Brexit uncertainty. 

It has since mounted a recovery, and is up 0.6% so far today to $1.4288 as the markets take a more sanguine view of the referendum and wider economic risks.

BHS collapse: Rescue deals that never happened

Sir Philip Green
BBC

The Work and Pensions Committee has published follow-up evidence from the hearings into the collapse of BHS. 

Among the documents is a reply from Mike Ashley, who was asked to give more detail about his efforts to buy BHS.

Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell claimed that a last minute deal was agreed on Friday 22 April, which would have kept BHS out of administration, but was blocked by Sir Philip.

However Mr Ashley says that the deal did not proceed because they could not get assurances over BHS's pension fund and that there was not time for due diligence. 

Mr Ashley did not hold any meetings or calls with Sir Philip at that time, so does not know if Sir Philip killed that offer.

Mr Ashley also says that Sports Direct came up with a second rescue deal, while BHS was in administration, and attended meetings with Sir Philip over that.

He felt that a deal had been reached and does not appear to know why it fell through.

Lagarde calls for climate action

Christine Lagarde
AFP/Getty Images

"The issue of climate change is the critical question of the moment and the next decade," the IMF chief Christine Lagarde said in Vienna. 

Ms Lagarde called on countries to remove their subsidies for fossil fuels and step up their game to curb emissions.

"We have indicated from the IMF two things that are equally important - the first one is to remove around the world subsidies of the consumption of fossil energy," she said, adding that the next step would be to put a price on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Natwest to go into bat?

Mark Kleinman is the city editor of Sky News, he tweets:

View more on twitter

The credit card at 50

BBC economics editor Kamal Ahmed tweets:

View more on twitter

Siemens and Gamesa to join forces in wind power

Siemens
Siemens

A giant new firm in the business of building windfarms is being planned.

Spain's Gamesa and Germany's Siemens have announced plans to merge their units in that business.

The new entity would have the largest market share in the wind farm industry, according to Reuters.

Under the deal Gamesa shareholders will receive €1bn.

Petrobras might sell off assets

BBC South America business correspondent tweets:

View more on twitter

Lagarde declines Brexit questions

"Out of respect" for Jo Cox, the UK MP killed yesterday, IMF chief Christine Lagarde declines to talk further on the risks of a UK exit from the European Union.  

"I have views but would rather not take questions on Brexit," Ms Lagarde says at the 'Unity in Diversity: The Case for Europe' event in Vienna.

IMF chief defends EU project

Christine Lagarde
AFP/Getty Images

Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, has made an impassioned defence of the "European project".

Only a united Europe can be prosperous and dynamic, she says at an event in Vienna, Austria. "Europe is always stronger when it stands together." 

On the UK referendum, she repeats her views that the country has benefited from trade and migration as part of the European Union.

Transatlantic relationship 'at its weakest'

This is interesting stuff. 

Ian Bremmer, president and founder of geopolitical risk analysts Eurasia Group, says the transatlantic relationship is in its weakest state for 75 years.

And it could get worse if Donald Trump is elected US president and the UK votes to leave the European Union, he says.

Talk of divorce is already doing harm, says geopolitical risk analyst Ian Bremmer.

FTSE 100 back above 6,000 points

The FTSE 100 has gone back above the 6,000 point mark - rising 1.5% to 6038.30 - as banks are not the only stocks to be recovering losses from earlier in the week.

On the FTSE 250, pub group Enterprise Inns is the biggest winner, rising 7% as it makes back the losses caused yesterday by a negative industry report.

Bookmaker William Hill has also regained ground - increasing 3.4% - after an analyst had suggested it faced a "bleak outlook".

Bank stocks swing back to gains

Canary Wharf seen at dusk
Reuters

Bank shares are leading the FTSE 100 higher, with Lloyds, Barclays and Standard Chartered all in the top five biggest winners so far.

Lloyds is leading the pack, rising 5.4% after a Supreme Court victory yesterday that could save it up to £1bn. Standard Chartered is up 4.2% and Barclays 3.8%.

They are on course to make up the losses they suffered this week after investors took fright at their exposure to a referendum victory for Vote Leave.

"This is a textbook definition of volatility," says Laith Khalaf, a senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown. "We are going to see swings as investors rush out of stocks one minute and then come back in when they look like bargains."

HSBC - which announced a $1.6bn (£1.1bn) settlement this morning - is up 0.8%.

'Not a bad deal for Tesco'

Author and financial journalist Ian Fraser gives his verdict on Tesco's £217m sale of garden centre Dobbies (see earlier post).

View more on twitter