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  2. FTSE 100 index climbs
  3. Brent crude falls by 1.2% to $51.80
  4. Ofgem tightens cap on pre-payment energy bills
  5. Paddy Power Betfair boss to step down

Live Reporting

By Dearbail Jordan

All times stated are UK

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That's all from us today, but don't be sad. We'll be back again from 6am with all the latest business news.

Don't forget to listen to Wake up to Money

If you're up bright and early and want the business news first thing, remember to listen to Wake up to Money. On from 5.15am.

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Another record high for the dow

The Dow Jones Industrial Average has claimed its ninth straight record closing high.

The index rose 25.61 points, or 0.12%, to 22,118.42, the S&P 500 gained 4.08 points, or 0.16% to 2,480.91 and the Nasdaq Composite added 32.21 points, or 0.51%, to 6,383.77.

Oil price fall contained

oil price
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Oil has recovered from earlier sharp falls to end the session just slightly lower. Brent crude dropped by 5 cents to $52.37 a barrel, while US crude has dropped 19 cents to $49.39 per barrel.

Analysts said automatic trading had kicked in once the oil price had dropped by 2%, helping the price to recover.

Vivendi denies it controls Telecom Italia

French media giant Vivendi has announced that it has no "de facto control" over Telecom Italia under Italian law.

Acknowledging "de facto control" over Telecom Italia would compel Vivendi to consolidate its accounts, including an adjusted net financial debt of 25bn euros.

Vivendi's statement underscores the growing pressure it faces in Italy, where local authorities are questioning its control of Telecom Italia

Dow heading for another record


It's only another hour until Wall St closes and the Dow looks like it's on course to hit yet another record high.

It's currently up 0.08% at 22,111.56.

But not all analysts and investors are happy at the market's strength.

Read why here.

Latest on Vale criminal proceedings

BBC South American correspondent tweets...

No more payment in gold

Gold bar

The UK tax authorities have been given extra ammunition to crack down on tax avoidance schemes that involve people being paid in gold bullion.

The General Anti-Abuse Rule panel, which advises HM Revenue & Customs, says such schemes are abnormal and contrived.

They go on: "We can see no reason for the steps to involve gold, other than for tax purposes."

"This is a clear case of associated taxpayers seeking to frustrate the intent of Parliament by identifying potential loopholes in complex interlinking anti-avoidance legislation, and arranging a series of intricate and precise steps to exploit those loopholes so as to gain an unexpected and unintended tax “win”," they add.

The ruling gives HMRC the power to rule that such tax dodges are unlawful.

Tesla risky say analysts

First production model of Tesla Model 3 out the assembly line in Fremont, California , U.S. is seen in this undated handout photo from Tesla Motors obtained by Reuters July 10, 2017

Tesla, the adventurous electric car maker from California, is taking some big risks say analysts.

Today the firm said it was trying to raise an extra $1.5bn by selling bonds - glorified IOUs - to professional investors.

The aim is to help fund production of its latest Model 3.

But the ratings agency Moody said: "The major challenge facing the company during the next twelve months will largely be the considerable execution risks associated with the rapid ramp-up in production of a totally new vehicle."

Another ratings agency, S&P, said: "There is a risk they could still run out of money... then you'd go back to the equity markets and hope it's not too late."

Venezuela: How did it come to this?

BBC business reporter and presenter Rob Young tweets...

Listen: For clear language see Dr Seuss

The Cat in the Hat children's book uses language well, says commentator Lucy Kellaway, who takes exception to a company boss urging people to restrict the use of the word "and" in their reports.

The Cat in the Hat children's book "uses language well"

Wakey wakey

Various currencies
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Can currencies enliven the markets?

Like the US Dow Jones, the FTSE 100 is close to a fresh high - despite the current snoozefest.

Connor Campbell, financial analyst at Spreadex, said: "The UK index isn't too far off its own all-time high, though with such a dreary week on the cards it may need another sharp drop from the pound to propel it back to those levels."

Walmart grandsons invest in Rapha


Members of the family behind US retailer Walmart have acquired a majority stake in the Rapha cycling brand.

Steuart and Tom Walton, who are the grandson of Walmart founder Sam, operate RZC Investments which has gained control of Rapha, which sponsors Team Sky.

Rapha's founder Simon Mottram will remain as chief executive and will continue to have a share in the company.

Steuart Walton, co-founder of RZC Investments, said: "We’re excited to be part of this next chapter by bringing the best sport in the world to more people in more ways and places."

Company results drive US market

New York stock market trader
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average has crept above 22,100.

It is up 13.79 points at 22,106.60.

Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group, said: "We have strong earnings that is helping the market.

"I have seen a lot of companies exceeding their revenue growth and we also have better-than-expected global growth, which are the main drivers for equities."

Emojis help software to spot sarcasm

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Emoji icons have helped scientists train computers to understand sarcasm.

Researchers used 1.2 billion tweets containing at least one of the most popular 64 emojis to develop DeepMoji.

The algorithm learned first to predict which emoji was likely to be used and then to recognise sarcasm, allowing it to spot hate speech faster than humans.

Read the full story here.

London indexes finish up

The FTSE 100 has closed up 18.88 points at 7,530.59.

Mining groups clung to the top as the day's biggest risers led by Anglo American, up 3.27% at £13.12.

It was followed by Rio Tinto, ahead 2.6% at $36.40 and Glencore, which added 2.59% at 346.55p.

Paddy Power Betfair was Monday's biggest faller after announced that its chief executive Breon Corcoran was standing down. Its share price tumbled 4.73% to £75.45.

The FTSE 250 finished up 8.64 points at 19,978.37.

Softbank may invest in Uber and Lyft

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Softbank, the Japanese telecoms giant, is mulling investing in the taxi hailing apps Uber and Lyft, according to Reuters.

Chief executive Masayoshi Son said that Softbank is "interested in discussing with Uber, we are also interested in discussing with Lyft".

He said: "We have not decided which way but the US is a very big market and is the most important market. So we are definitely very much interested in the US market.

He added: "Whether we decide to partner and invest into Uber or Lyft, I don't know what would be the end result, but we are definitely interested in and we are interested in exploring the idea and we would like to discuss with both companies."

Lowering energy cap leads to gap

BBC personal finance correspondent Simon Gompertz tweets

Watch: Can this stick help Japan's farmers?

Lisa Kikuchi is chief executive of SenSprout which is building soil moisture sensors to help Japan's farmers.

As part of the BBC's Jumpstarting Japan series - meeting the Asian giant's young entrepreneurs - Lisa says she is now developing software to automatically control crop watering.

Developing sensors to help Japan's farmers

A surprise on your new £10 note

Check out this fancy business from the Bank of England...

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Dow Jones crawls to new high

You'd never guess it from the lacklustre trading, but the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a fresh record on Monday.

The US index crawled over the 22,100 level for a time. It now up 1.38 points at 22,094.19.

Cuts in focus as oil producers meet

Oil rig workers
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Representatives from Opec, the cartel of oil producing nations, and non-Opec members are meeting in Abu Dhabi today and Tuesday to discuss cuts and complying with them.

There is concern that the countries who agreed to reduce oil production by 1.8 million barrels a day until next March have been unable to stick to their targets.

Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist with ABN Amro, said: "The market is looking for comment from Saudi Arabia signalling Opec will meet its agreed target. The possibility for [price] movement seems limited unless Opec comes out with a statement."

Tandem buys Harrod's bank

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Harrod's banking arm is being sold to digital lender Tandem.

The challenger bank announced on Monday that as well as buying the division, it will also benefit from an additional £80m of capital coming into the business.

Netflix joins forces with Millarworld

Chloe Grace Moretz with her character Hit-Girl in the film Kick-Ass
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Chloe Grace Moretz with her character Hit-Girl in the film Kick-Ass

After shaking up the film and television industry, Netflix has stepped into mergers and acquisitions and has bought Millarworld, the comic book publishing house behind Kick-Ass and Kingsman.

Mark Millar is the brains behind Millarworld and the company will work with Netflix to bring films, series and children's programmes to the screen.

Surely now is the time for Hit Girl to have her own show?

Slow start for US stocks

Wall Street
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The Dow Jones Industrial Average creaked into action on Monday, rising just 3.96 points to 22,096.77.

The S&P 500 is flat at 2,476.93 and the Nasdaq is 9.14 points ahead at 6,360.71.

Small firms need help on data protection laws

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The Federation of Small Businesses is concerned that some companies will not be ready for the introduction of GeneralData Protection Regulation and could, inadvertently leave themselves at risk of paying fines.

Federation chairman Mike Cherry says: "As rules come into force in May 2018, we need to see a commitment from the Government and the Information Commissioner’s Office to provide support and guidance for the 5.5 million-strong small businesses community in good time."

He adds: "Learning the lessons of auto-enrolment, this should be allied to early, focused and clear communications. This is key for a gold standard approach to data protection that the government seeks. FSB took part in the government’s consultation to request this, but there is no sign yet that this has registered. We will be taking this up with ministers."

France and Iran strengthen ties

Oil prices tick lower

Oil prices are trading lower.

Brent crude is now down 1.2% at $51.80 a barrel.

West Texas Intermediate is also off 1.2% at $49.01 a barrel.

Business rates cut for Premier League giants

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Some of the richest football clubs in the country will kick off the new season with a business rates cut, reports PA. And that's while many small business are facing major rates increases.

Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea will all enjoy lower taxes for 2017/18 because the value of their stadiums have fallen under the Government's controversial rates review earlier this year, according to business rates specialists CVS.

Arsenal will benefit the most, seeing its bill drop £58,812 to £3.32million. Manchester United's saving will be £50,519, Liverpool's £31,000 and Chelsea's £25,618.

Meanwhile a raft of small firms saw the amount they pay rise - in some cases by 3,000% - when rateable values were updated on 1 April.

New rateable values determine tax bills for the next five years and are based upon property valuations as of April 1 2015.

Debt funds first mass-market Tesla electric car

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US electric-car-maker Tesla plans to fund production of its first mass market vehicle - the Model 3 - by raising about $1.5bn in a bond offering.

"Tesla intends to use the net proceeds from this offering to further strengthen its balance sheet during this period of rapid scaling with the launch of Model 3, and for general corporate purposes," the company said.

The news comes a week after Tesla intimated that it would use debts to help ramp up production of the Model 3.

The car was launched at the end of last month with a base price of $35,000 and the company said it's received an average of 1,800 advance reservations per day for the model since then.

FTSE climbing, but how far will it go?

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by 12.45pm, the FTSE-100 index was up 11.55 points at 7523.26. That's still some way short of its record closing high of 7546.99, which it hit back in June.

"Equities have made a very mixed start to the news week, the UK FTSE essentially flat, holding Friday's breakout," said Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets.

The market is being supported by the miners, he reported, while dragging on the index are defensive stocks, such as GlaxoSmithKline, down 0.65%, Imperial Brands, which has slipped 1.27%, and Reckitt Benckiser, down 0.36%.

Cash v stock markets since the crash

Here's an interesting chart from Fidelity showing how the FT-SE All-Share has performed compared to cash since the global crisis in 2007.

It shows the total return of the stock market from 30 June 2007 to 30 June 2017 and uses Morningstar UK Savings 2500 data to calculate the cash figures over the same period...

Fidelity International

Scrapping single-use carrier bags

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More on Tesco's announcement that it is to follow Sainsbury's and stop selling 5p disposable carrier bags. Instead it will offer customers 10p bags for life.

Louise Edge, senior campaigner at Greenpeace UK, welcomed the move. "It is great to see major retailers moving away from disposable plastic," she said.

"For too long we've seen plastic as something to be used once and thrown away. But there is no such place as 'away' - and millions of tonnes of plastic are ending up in our rivers, beaches, streets and in the sea every year, harming marine life.

"The plastic bag charge has done wonders for reducing the number of bags polluting our coastlines and waters. Now we need to see the same for throwaway plastic bottles - a deposit return scheme which encourages collection."

Read our full story here

Sports Direct apologises for 'English-only' note to staff

BBC Radio 5 live

Sports Direct Bangor store

Sports Direct has apologised for "any misunderstanding" after it issued a notice apparently banning staff from speaking any language other than English at work.

The Welsh language commissioner is reportedly investigating the matter, after a note was posted on a wall at a Sports Direct store in Bangor, in north Wales.

A spokesperson for the company said the notice was not intended to ban staff from speaking Welsh, and that it supports the use of "local language" in all of its stores.

"Sports Direct issued a notice to all stores in the UK on our language policy.

"It was intended to ensure that all staff, who attended briefings on health and safety and other important issues, fully understood the content of these communications.

"We apologise for any misunderstanding or upset this notice has caused".

Sports Direct notice
BBC/Sports Direct

Rumour has it Adele is backing VR company

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Hello, who's this investing in little-known music start-up EVR Holdings? According to The Standard Adele has pumped some of her cash into the AIM-listed firm.

The company's MelodyVR app allows fans to watch gigs on virtual reality headsets and, according to the newspaper report, it has signed deals to develop VR content with Warner, Universal and Sony, the music industry's three biggest players.

However Adele declined to comment and her name doesn't appear on the shareholder register. But that's because she's invested through a nominee account, according to the paper's source.

So it's not clear whether she's made up her mind, or needs to think it over...

Britons taking foreign breaks more often

Spanish beach
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Britons are taking more foreign holidays than they used to but are opting for shorter breaks, according to official figures.

The Office for National Statistics found a "marked decline" in the popularity of two-week holidays since 1996.

It also found that one-day "booze cruises" across the Channel to stock up on alcohol and cigarettes are much less common than they used to be.

The ONS said UK residents went on more than 45 million foreign holidays in 2016 - up from 27 million in 1996.

That represents a 68% rise in foreign holidays over the past 20 years.

Cairn Energy says it's hit oil off Senegal


Cairn Energy said its SNE North-1 exploration well off Senegal, has encountered oil and gas. But now's not the time to celebrate: now's the time to undertake more work to establish the potential commerciality of the discovery, the FT-SE 250 company said.

"The SNE North well results are encouraging in terms of further prospectivity and implications for the full block potential offshore Senegal," said Cairn's CEO Simon Thomson.

The well reached a depth of 2,837m and is located in around 900 metres water depth, 90 kilometres offshore.

"We are delighted to have completed a safe and successful drilling programme in Senegal this year with the Stena DrillMAX," Mr Thomson added.

Oil price dips ahead of Opec meeting

Oil pump

The price of oil has slipped as the market waits for news from the latest meeting of producers' cartel Opec.

Officials from a joint Opec and non-Opec committee are holding a two-day meeting in Abu Dhabi to discuss how their efforts to lift the oil price are going.

Late last year, Opec and 11 other oil producers agreed to cut supplies in an attempt to push prices up, but there are doubts over how effective this has been.

On Monday morning, the price of Brent crude was down 1.4% at $51.71 a barrel.