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  1. FTSE 100 closes flat, mining shares are the biggest fallers
  2. Eurostar strikes suspended from midnight for talks
  3. German GDP growth slows to 0.4%; Italy stagnates

Live Reporting

By Karen Hoggan

All times stated are UK

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Good night

That's it for another day on the Business Live page. 

Thank you for staying with us.

We'll be back as usual on Monday morning at 6am, so do join us then for all the latest financial news. 

Taxing times?

BBC World Service

Hillary Clinton (R) and Donald Trump (L)
Getty Images

The Democratic nominee for the US presidential election, Hillary Clinton, has disclosed her latest tax return, reports BBC World Service.  

Her billionaire Republican rival, Donald Trump, has said his tax affairs are undergoing an official audit and he can't disclose figures until the review is completed - though the Internal Revenue Service says he can. 

Mrs Clinton and her husband Bill, the former US president, earned $10.6m (£8.2m) last year, with federal taxes coming to just over 34%.

Presidential candidates are not obliged to reveal their tax affairs, though most do.

Wall Street retreats from Thursday's record

Wall Street sign and US flags
Getty Images

Shares on Wall Street fell from record highs on Friday as lacklustre retail sales and producer price figures dampened investor confidence in the economy's expansion. 

The retreat in stocks followed record high closes on Thursday for all three major indexes. 

Cooling consumer spending and low inflation suggest the Federal Reserve will probably not raise interest rates very soon despite a robust employment market. 

Dow Jones closed at 18,576.40 - a slight fall of 37.12 points or 0.20%.

The Nasdaq edged up by 4.50 points or 0.009% to 5,232.9.

And the S&P 500 ended the day at 2,184.05 - that's down 1.74 points or 0.08%.

Young, rich and Chinese in rural America

BBC Capital tweets

Start spreading the news ...

CBI tweets

Fox News Channel appoints new bosses

Fox News logo
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Twenty-First Century Fox has appointed Jack Abernethy and Bill Shine as co-presidents of Fox News, replacing Roger Ailes who stepped down last month after a sexual harassment scandal.

Both are senior managers and have a long track record with Fox.

Mr Ailes resigned in July after a series of sexual harassment allegations against him by female news presenters. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Fox News plays a prominent role in US election coverage. Read more here

Selfie awareness?

Deputy editor of FT Special Reports tweets

The Bank of England's former governor, Mervyn King, on how he copes with the celebrity status of some central bankers ...

View more on twitter

Ikea breaks new ground

Watch its first steps into India...

Rangers sue former directors and Mike Ashley for £4m

Entrance to Rangers ground

Rangers have launched a £4m legal claim against a number of former directors and Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley.

The club allege Charles Green, Imran Ahmad, Brian Stockbridge and Derek Llambias negotiated commercial deals with Sports Direct below market value.

They also believe Mr Ashley unfairly benefited from the alleged negligence.

The action came to light at the Court of Session where Mr Ashley's legal team succeeded in a bid to get Rangers to disclose documents to them.

Rangers allege that the former directors did not act in the business's best interests when they negotiated commercial deals with Sports Direct.

Read more here

Chinese bond yields drop to decade lows

Zero Hedge tweets...

Virgin Trains vexed?

Virgin train alongside platform

Sticking with railways - and we've got more on the Virgin Trains East Coast strikes.

The company says the company is baffled at why the walkout is happening.

We don't know why the RMT is calling this action when we've given them concrete assurances on every single one of their points. We've promised there'll be no impact on safety; the safety roles will remain onboard. There's no compulsory redundancies. Anyone who wants to stay with Virgin Trains can do so. Their salaries will be protected. So we've given them all that assurances; they've still called these strikes, so now it's focussing on the passengers. We need to focus on keeping those services in place, which is what we're going to do.

Richard Scott.Executive director of corporate affairs, Virgin Trains

Relief for Eurostar passengers?

RMT demonstrators outside St Pancras station
Getty Images

In case you missed this earlier ...

Not only has the RMT suspended strike action on Eurostar from midnight to allow talks to take place, but earlier the TSSA rail union suspended its planned strike action on the service. 

TSSA staff had planned to strike on 14 and 15 August, and 28 and 29 August, but it has suspended action "following an agreement to review work rosters at St Pancras Station".

"Following talks this morning, we have reached an agreement in principal that we believe will secure a better work-life balance for our members and we are now suspending the industrial action with immediate effect," said Manuel Cortes, TSSA general secretary.

He said he was confident Eurostar would deliver on an agreement which contains an ongoing review of current rosters. The union says it hopes to see new rosters in December which will guarantee "balanced workloads, balanced shift and weekend working and balanced destinations".

"It is now time for the company to deliver because this has been a long running problem for our members," Mr Cortes added.

Chilling crime?

BBC World Service

The billionaire owner of a chain of grocery shops in New York has put up a reward of $5,000 (£3,900) in the hope of catching thieves who are targeting ice-cream, reports BBC World Service.

With the city in the grip of a heatwave, John Catsimatidis - who owns the Gristedes chain -announced his incentive on Twitter, saying ice-cream bandits were wreaking havoc in New York.

In one instance this week 80 tubs were taken from just one of his shops, although the culprits were caught before they could escape with the frozen loot. 

The police say there have been more than 250 ice cream theft complaints this year, and 130 arrests. 

Which African nation is in economic pole position?

BBC Business tweets

FTSE closes flat following earlier 14-month highs

London Stock Exchange sign

The FTSE 100 closed flat on Friday having hit a 14-month high earlier in the day.

The five biggest fallers were all mining stocks following weak economic figures out of China 

The FTSE 100 is up about about 11% so far this year. 

Record low interest rates have helped shares to recover from the dive they went into following June's Brexit vote.  

The cut in rates has also hit returns on bonds and cash. As a result, investors  have turned to the better returns on offer from stocks. 

"Unattractive gilt yields and the weaker pound have improved investors' appetite in the UK stock market," said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior market analyst at London Capital Group.

FTSE 100 closed at  6,916.02 - up by just 1.31 points or 0.02%.

Mining stocks slipped back as copper prices fell following the release of the economic data in China, which is the world's biggest user of metals.

Shares in Antofagasta, Rio Tinto, AngloAmerican, Glencore and BHP Billiton all fell between 3.4% to 1.5%.

Borders open in Colombia

Venezuelans cross Colombian border

Venezuela and Colombia have announced a partial reopening of their 2,200 kilometre-long border, which has been closed for almost a year after a decision by Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro. 

Natalio Cosoy, the BBC Colombia correspondent, says that at this first stage only five crossings will be opened and only pedestrians will be allowed through for 12 hours every day. 

The complete normalisation of the border will take place progressively, as both governments reach further agreements on security, commerce and energy matters.

'Potential stumbling block to economic growth'

The Wall Street Journal tweets on US retail sales...

Newton chief executive to become non-executive chair

Helena Morrisey

The high profile chief executive of Newton Fund Management - Helena Morrissey - is to become non-executive chair of the firm's Board of Directors. 

Meanwhile Hanneke Smits has been appointed to the Board of Directors with a view to her becoming the future chief executive. 

As non-executive chair, Helena Morrissey will continue advise Newton and will represent Newton and BNY Mellon Investment Management within the financial services sector, the company says in a statement.

Not only has Ms Morrissey spent 15 years a as chief executive of Newton - ultimately responsible for over £50bn worth of funds that the firm manages - she is also the mother to nine children. Read more here

Eurostar strikes suspended ...

Strikes by Eurostar workers will be suspended from midnight to allow further talks, according to the RMT union.

IMF: China's credit growth 'unsustainable'

Reuters tweets

BHS flagship store to close on Saturday

BHS Oxford Street store

BHS's flagship Oxford Street store will close on Saturday, and the iconic British retailer is set to totally disappear from the UK High Street by next weekend. 

The store in London is among 58 outlets closing over the next eight days as administrators close the doors on 88 years of retail history. 

Mango crops under threat

Africa Business Report tweets

Pinewood takeover moves step closer

The recent Bond film Spectre, was fined at Pinewood
Getty Images

The takeover of Pinewood film studios - home to the James Bond movies - for £323.3m has moved a step closer.

Aermont, which runs property investment funds, says financing pre-conditions have been satisfied for the Pinewood purchase.

The offer will now be put to Pinewood shareholders to make a decision.  If they back the offer, they will be entitled to receive 563.2 pence per Pinewood share.

Shares in Pinewood were trading at 560 pence on Friday afternoon.

US retail sales unchanged

Shopping on Fifth Avenue
BBC World Service

US retail sales were unexpectedly flat in July as Americans cut back on purchases of clothing and other goods.

This reining in of consumer spending may weigh on expectations of an acceleration in economic growth in the third quarter. 

Other figures released on Friday showed producer prices recorded their biggest drop in nearly a year in July amid declining costs for services and energy goods. 

Cooling consumer spending and tame inflation suggest the Federal Reserve central bank will probably not raise interest rates any time soon despite a robust employment market. 

US stocks retreat after record highs

US share indexes - which had hit record highs on Thursday - retreated on Friday after weak US retail sales and producer pricing data. 

The Dow Jones was down 29 points, or 0.16%, to 18584.62. The wider S&P 500 fell 3.56 points to 2,182.23, while the Nasdaq was 6.59 points lower at 5221.81. 

US retail sales in July came in at $457.7bn, flat compared with June, when there had been strong consumer spending. 

Winners in early trade in New York on the Dow were Exxon Mobil, Boeing, Procter and Gamble, Coca-Cola and McDonald's. Major fallers were Goldman Sachs, Nike, JP Morgan Chase, Unitedhealth Group, and E I du Pont Nemours.   

Gorilla tactics?


Conference calls about financial results are not usually a laugh a minute, however there was a bit of excitement during burger chain Ruby Tuesday's second quarter earnings call, Business Insider UK reports.

It seems an unidentified caller posed as Bud Fox, Charlie Sheen's character from the movie "Wall Street," and asked chief executive JJ Buettgen if the burger chain's business had been affected by the death of the gorilla Harambe.

Harambe was a gorilla living at Cincinnati Zoo that was shot and killed in May after a three year old child fell into its enclosure.   

The caller even claimed to work for the Geneva Roth Holding Corporation, a fictional holding company from "Wall Street."

Read more here

Cattle call

The BBC's Africa Business Report presenter tweets:

View more on twitter

Virgin managers to man trains on strike days

Virgin East Coast will use management staff on trains to cover striking rail workers.
The RMT union has announced three 24-hour strikes on Virgin East Coast trains on 19, 26 and 29 August.

Virgin's executive director of corporate affairs, Richard Scott, said he was "puzzled by the union's actions" as the company had given them assurances that there would be no compulsory redundancies. 

Mr Scott told the World at One's Shaun Ley that it would "run a full timetable" on the strike days because "management-grade staff" will be working on the trains instead. 

(Photo: Virgin train. Credit: PA)

Tech Tent

Today's packed Tech Tent programme on the BBC World Service features none other than cyber seer Prof Alan Woodward.

Tune in at 4pm (BST) this afternoon.

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Keeping a virtual eye

Two toddlers

How can busy working mums and dads keep tabs on their toddlers and stay connected to them during the working day?

A growing number of tech entrepreneurs believe they have an answer.

JC Penney sales sparkle

Sephora make-up
Getty Images

Ahead of the US shopping figures out later, US department store chain JC Penney has reported a boost in sales helped by its Sephora beauty products. Like-for-like sales in its stores grew 2.2% in the second quarter, and net losses halved to $56m (£43m). 

JC Penney joins rivals Macy's and Kohl's in beating analyst forecasts, although expectations were low for all three. 

Clarity on apprentices

5 Live business presenter tweets:

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US retail sales to slow in July?

US shopping bags
Getty Images

With the FTSE and sterling little moved, analysts are looking ahead to US retail sales data expected later this afternoon.

US economic growth was largely driven by consumer spending in the second quarter, which puts the spotlight on the shopping figures, said Chris Saint of Hargreaves Lansdown.

"After a strong June showing, retail sales growth is expected to slow to 0.4% from 0.6%," World First's Jeremy Cook says, adding that a "deceleration beyond this could take some of the wind out of the dollar’s sails".

How to stop your children catching ‘rich kid-itis’

Rich kids

The FT's wealth reporter has been investigating the concerns of well-off parents.

How to prevent privileged nippers from developing a poor work ethic, or playing fast and loose with their excess cash?

The piece includes some good advice from Warren Buffett: “A very rich person should leave his kids enough to do anything but not enough to do nothing”.

Milling about

Virgin Trains promises no strike disruption

Virgin train

Virgin Trains says it will run a full timetable during the RMT trade union strike. Workers on the East Coast line are walking out on 19 August and for two days over the August Bank Holiday weekend.

"I want to reassure our customers that our timetable will be unaffected during these walk-outs, as well as during any subsequent strikes by the RMT," said David Horne, managing director for Virgin Trains on the east coast.

Virgin Trains strike announced

Odd pairing?

Our technology correspondent tweets:

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'Keep the nation building'

David Orr, chief executive at the National Housing Federation, is concerned about the slowdown in UK construction, as shown in figures released by the Office for National Statistics earlier. 

“We know that an uncertain economic environment will cause builders to put the brakes on," he says.

"Our country’s prosperity and thousands of citizens’ livelihoods depend on a strong building sector – we cannot let a slowdown take hold.”

But he adds that housing associations have a "track record" of carrying on during tough times, and given the right support from the government, they can "keep the nation building".