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  1. Get in touch:
  2. FTSE 100 hits new closing high
  3. George Osborne to edit Evening Standard
  4. Ex-Barclays boss Bob Diamond in Panmure takeover
  5. British Airways owner launches new airline
  6. Theresa May vows to probe energy market

Live Reporting

By Daniel Thomas

All times stated are UK

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  1. Have a good weekend

    Thanks for tuning in to Business Live. We'll be back on Monday from 6am. Hope you have a good weekend. 

  2. US markets end lower

    US trader

    Wall Street stocks ended lower as a rally spurred by the Fed's decision to raise rates this week continued to lose steam.

    The Dow Jones lost 0.10% to 20,914.62, the S&P 500 shed 0.13% to 2,378.25, and the Nasdaq was flat at 5,901.00.

    Among the weakest performers were financial stocks, with  Goldman Sachs and  JP Morgan Chase  down 1.72% and 1.05% respectively. 

    Healthcare stocks also struggled, after a study on Amgen's cholesterol drug Repatha disappointed investors, sending its shares 6% lower. 

    This dragged on the S&P 500 healthcare index which fell 0.53%.

  3. UK energy market probe 'not needed' - Energy UK

    Gas hob

    Earlier, the prime minister promised a full investigation into the UK energy market which she said was "not working for all consumers",

    But Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, which represents the industry, tells the BBC that it is not needed.

    “We often hear about the 'broken' energy market, yet there are now 50 suppliers providing more choice than ever and record numbers of customers switching," he says.

    "Only this week the Committee on Climate Change report said energy bills have not materially increased since 2008 through households becoming more energy efficient."

    He adds: "Further intervention now could risk undermining the positive changes happening in the energy market and kill off competition, which is driving innovation and benefits for consumers."

  4. Disney to pay $3.8m in back wages

    Disney parade, California

    Disney is to pay $3.8m in back wages after US officials found it had broken rules around the minimum wage, overtime and record-keeping.

    The wages will be paid to 16,340 employees in two divisions - Disney Vacation Club Management Corp and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts US.

    "The Department of Labor has identified a group of cast members who may have performed work outside of their scheduled shift, and we will be providing a one-time payment to resolve this," a Walt Disney World Resort spokeswoman told Reuters. 

    Disney's Parks and Resorts unit operates themed parks around the world, including the Florida-based Walt Disney World Resort.

  5. US and Germany face off over trade

    Donald Trump has had his first personal encounter with the German leader Angela Merkel. During his election campaign he claimed that his opponent, Hillary Clinton wanted to be a US version of Mrs Merkel - and that wasn't meant as a compliment. 

    Meanwhile, in Baden Baden, in Germany, America's Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is meeting finance ministers from the biggest economies in the world - their aim: avoiding a global trade war. 

    View more on twitter
  6. 'Distinct lack of chemistry'

    Gary O'Donoghue

    Washington Correspondent

    Donald Trump and Angela Merkel

    Both at the photo opportunity before the meeting, and during their press conference, there was a distinct lack of chemistry between these two leaders - who are at odds over so many issues.

    Trade dominated their comments with the President insisting America was treated unfairly and that had to change. 

    For her part, Angela Merkel said trade could be a win-win situation and globalisation could bring benefits to everyone. 

    America's unhappiness over the failure of countries like Germany to pay their fair share to Nato was also on show - and Mrs Merkel said Germany would meet the 2% contribution rate by 2024.

    Asked about claims that the British intelligence services had been involved in the alleged wiretapping of Trump Tower, the President referred back to Angela Merkel's own experience of having her phone tapped under the Obama administration. 

    "At least we have something in common," said Mr Trump. 

  7. Trump suggests Merkel was also tapped by Obama administration

    The Trump and Merkel press conference has just finished - but not before the US President suggested that both he and German Chancellor Merkel were tapped by the Obama administration.  

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  8. Trump 'I am not an isolationist'

    President Trump is asked about his isolationist policy.

    He says he doesn't believe in isolationism, but that the US has been treated unfairly in trade deals. 

    "I am a trader, I am a fair trader, I am a trader who wants to see good for everybody worldwide," he says.  

    View more on twitter
  9. Merkel meets Trump: A defining moment for US and Germany

    Donald Trump and Angela Merkel

    President Trump's press conference with Germany's Angela Merkel has just started.

    He says they had "productive talks" and thanked her for strong support for Nato.

    But on the surface they appear to have little in common.

    He is flamboyant, impetuous and prone to rhetoric which sets alarm bells ringing in Berlin. She is reserved, pragmatic and lingers over decisions.

    He lambasted her open door refugee policy. She opposed his travel ban.

    Jenny Hill from Berlin compares the two.  Read more.

  10. Google bosses apologise to government

    Google bosses have apologised to to the government for tax-payer funded adverts appearing alongside Youtube videos, according to a statement from the Cabinet Office.

    The company has promised to review it advertising systems.

    A government spokesman said:

    "The Cabinet Office has told Google it expects to see a plan and a timetable for work to improve protection of government adverts to ensure this doesn't happen again. 

    "YouTube advertising remains on hold while that work is carried out." 

    A follow-up meeting is expected next week.

  11. Ex-VW chairman to sell stake

    Ferdinand Piech, ex-VW chairman

    Volkswagen's ex-chairman Ferdinand Piech is in talks to sell his stake in the group, its holding company has said.

    The 79-year-old owns 14.7% in Porsche SE, which in turn holds a controlling stake in the Volkswagen group, with 52% of the voting rights.

    In a statement, Porsche SE said that other members of the Porsche and Piech families would have first refusal on the stake, which is worth around $1bn.

    It added: "At present, it is still unforeseeable whether the aforesaid changes in the shareholder structure of Porsche SE will in fact occur."

    It comes after relations between the current management at VW and the other co-owners soured, after Mr Piech claimed that company bosses - including chief executive Martin Winterkorn - knew about the firm's emissions cheating earlier than they admitted.

  12. Why is the FTSE 100 climbing?

    Rates decisions from both the UK and the US central banks boosted the FTSE this week, says Neil Wilson, an analyst at ETX Capital. 

    First, he notes that the Bank of England's decision to hold rates at 0.25% on Thursday boosted the pound, but this did not dent shares, as it usually does. 

    That was because the Bank of England hinted at future rate rises, helping the "risk-on mood".

    However, it was the US Federal Reserve's decision to raise rates on Wednesday that really helped the FTSE, he says.

    This suppressed the dollar and "sent miners soaring" on Thursday, into Friday. 

    Oil prices also "firmed a touch", coming off three-month lows and boosting FTSE heavyweights Shell and BP. 

  13. FTSE 100 hits new closing high

    The London Stock Exchange

    After touching an intraday high earlier, the London market has chalked up a new closing record. 

    The FTSE 100 ended the day 9.01 points higher at 7,424.96, a 0.12% gain. That follows yesterday's closing high of 7,415.95 points.

    Banking and insurance stocks posted healthy gains, with Admiral Group 1.94% higher and RBS up 1.37%. 

  14. AirBnB 'exploring long-term rentals'

    AirBnB app

    AirBnB has grown rapidly by helping users rent short-term holiday accommodation. But now it is considering branching out to help them find places to live,  Bloomberg reports .

    According to sources, the start-up has hired McKinsey & Co to research the long-term rental market, which is dominated in the US by classifieds site Craigslist.

    AirBnB believes it can offer an edge, however, by connecting renters with safer, identity-verified landlords, the sources said.

    It comes after the firm was accused of pushing up rents and creating housing shortages in some cities. 

    AirBnB has been expanding in other directions, introducing itinerary options, tours and other travel experiences in November. Earlier this month it raised $1bn in fresh growth capital from investors.

  15. US manufacturing output climbs

    A factory, Detroit

    US manufacturing output posted its sixth successive rise in February, the Federal Reserve said today.

    Increased production of machinery, plastic, paper and metal products pushed total output up 0.5% compared to January, and 1.2% from a year ago. 

    However, utilities output fell 5.7% due to unseasonably warm weather, leaving the Fed's overall industrial production index unchanged.

  16. European airlines face $835m fine for cargo breaches

    BA cargo, logo

    The EU has reimposed fines totaling $835m on 11 air cargo firms after the original decision was reversed on a technicality in 2015.

    The European Commission found the companies had colluded to fix fuel and security surcharges between 1999 and 2006. 

    Among the 11 firms are Air France, which faces a $197m fine, KLM which must pay $137m, and British Airways which owes $112m.

    A number of the carriers said they would appeal the decision.