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Live Reporting

Mary-Ann Russon

All times stated are UK

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  1. Good Night

    BBC Testcard

    That's it for today on Business Live.

    We'll be back bright and early at 06:00 on Thursday.

    Do join us then for all the latest breaking news and analysis from the business world.

  2. Wall Street mixed on close

    Wall Street at Christmas

    US shares were mixed on close, despite jubilation from the Trump administration after the US House of Representatives approved a long-anticipated tax cut bill.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day down 0.11% or 28.1 points to 24,726.65. The top loser was Disney, down 1.8% to $109.80.

    The broader S&P 500 meanwhile closed flat, falling just 0.08% or 2.2 points to 2,679.25. The top faller was Linux software firm Red Hat Inc, down 5.3% to $122.00, despite reporting better-than-expected earnings in the third quarter ended 30 November.

    And the tech-heavy Nasdaq ended flat as well, down 0.04% or 2.9 points to 6,960.96, dragged down by internet applications firm Chinacache International Holdings, down 36.4% to $1.94, after its stock increased by almost 200% earlier in the day.

  3. AT&T to pay bonuses, invest $1bn once tax reform signed

    AT&T logo

    Major US telecommunications provider AT&T has announced that it will pay $1,000 bonuses to over 200,000 employees, and invest an additional $1bn in the US in 2018, once the tax reform bill is signed into law.

  4. BreakingBritish deputy PM Damian Green resigns

    Breaking News graphic

    British deputy prime minister Damian Green has resigned from cabinet after investigation finds he breached UK ministerial code.

    He quit after he was found to have made "inaccurate and misleading" statements about what he knew about claims pornography had been found on a computer in his Commons office in 2008.

    In his resignation letter, Mr Green apologised for his actions.

    In her response, Mrs May expressed "deep regret" at his departure.

    Mr Green, who as first secretary of state was the PM's deputy, had been under investigation regarding allegations of inappropriate conduct.

  5. 'It's always a lot of fun when you win'

    Donald Trump and fellow Republicans cheer at celebratory tax cut press conference

    The Republicans are jubilant over the passing of the tax cut bill - members of the Trump administration have been thanking each other and President Trump for their work on the bill.

    Speaker of the House of Representatives Paul Ryan said that President Trump had "exquisite Presidential leadership".

    "It's always a lot of fun when you win," said President Trump. "I hate to say this, but we essentially repealed Obamacare...I know you don't like this expression, but we are making America great again.

    "The people behind me have worked so hard, I just want to turn around and thank them all - they are very, very special people."

  6. 'It's been an amazing experience'

    President Trump speaks at tax cut press conference

    President Donald Trump has spoken at a live televised press conference about the Republicans' tax bill.

    "It's been an amazing experience, I have to tell you - it hasn't been done in 34 years but really it hasn't been done," he said.

    "3.2 trillion dollars in tax cuts for average families and doubling standard deduction and doubling child tax credit."

    President Trump also said that he is helping farm owners and encouraging entrepreneurship.

    "For the most part, state tax has been wiped out so they can keep their farms in the family," he said.

    "[And] we have companies pouring back into our country. This means the formation of new young companies."

  7. US Dept of Commerce issues decision on Bombardier dispute

    Bombardier aeroplane

    The US Department of Commerce has investigated the Boeing-Bombardier dispute and determined that "exporters from Canada sold 100 to 150-seat large civil aircraft in the United States at 79.82% less than fair value".

    The department also determined that Canada is "providing unfair subsidies to its producers of 100- to 150-seat large civil aircraft at a rate of 212.39%".

    As a result of the decision, the Department of Commerce will instruct US Customs and Border Protection to collect cash deposits from importers of these aircraft based on the final rates.

  8. 'Paygo' rule to be waived

    White House at Christmas

    The White House expects the US Congress to soon waive a rule known as "Paygo" that could trigger deep spending cuts in areas such as Medicare and agriculture, according to a White House official.

    The spending cuts are needed in order to cover the costs of the recently passed tax cut bill.

    The Paygo rule requires the Senate to find offsets for all tax cuts. Congress will need to pass spending resolution soon, in order to keep the government running.

  9. RMT 'inflicting unnecessary misery on our passengers'

    RMT Union member striking over guard roles

    South Western Railway has responded to news that rail workers are planning a series of 24-hour walkouts over a long-running row about the role of guards.

    “Already trying to ruin New Year’s Eve, the RMT executive seem set to start the New Year in the same way they ended the old – by inflicting unnecessary misery on our passengers," said a South Western Railway spokesperson.

    “Despite our repeated reassurances that no one will lose their job, that we plan to retain a second person on all our trains, and that we will create more jobs as we introduce more and longer trains, the RMT is just not listening and pressing ahead with this pointless industrial action.

    “As before we will put in place contingency plans to keep our passengers moving should these strikes go ahead.”

  10. What happens now?

    Donald Trump addresses media at Cabinet meeting on tax cuts

    The White House is holding a press conference to discuss what happens now that the tax overhaul plans have been passed.

    A White House official says that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can now begin working on changing the tax code, even before President Trump signs the bill into law.

    As for Obamacare, the spokesperson said that the President will work with the House of Representatives to pass "cost-sharing discounts" to subsidise the healthcare programme.

  11. Switzerland lowers tariffs to tackle inflation

    Main street of Rolle Switzerland

    Switzerland plans to remove tariffs on imported industrial goods, in a bid to bring down inflation.

    Tariffs will be reduced on selected agricultural goods brought into the country too.

    "These measures should lead to considerable savings of around 900m Swiss francs ($911 million) for businesses and consumers," the government said.

  12. Trump: Tax reform pours 'rocket fuel' into economy

    Congress building at night

    More from President Trump statement welcoming the outcome of House vote on the tax reform legislation.

    "Unemployment continues to fall, the stock market is at a record high, and wages will soon be on the rise," he said.

    "By cutting taxes and reforming the broken system, we are now pouring rocket fuel into the engine of our economy.

    "America is back to winning again, and we’re growing like never before. There is a great spirit of optimism sweeping across our land.

    "Americans can once again rest assured that our brightest days are still to come."

  13. Trump hails 'big, beautiful tax cut'

    Donald Trump

    President Donald Trump has issued a statement in response to the passing of his tax overhaul plans in the House of Representatives.

    "I promised the American people a big, beautiful tax cut for Christmas.

    With final passage of this legislation, that is exactly what they are getting.

    "I would like to thank the members of Congress who supported this historic bill, which represents an extraordinary victory for American families, workers, and businesses."

  14. House votes to pass Republican tax bill

    US House of Representatives

    The House of Representatives has voted once again on the Republicans' tax overhaul plans and have voted to clear the bill by 224-201.

  15. Democrats firmly against tax bill

    Richard Neal

    Over in the US House of Representatives, the House has convened to re-vote on the Republicans' tax overhaul plan, because of technical changes in the Senate.

    A debate is currently being carried out on the floor of the House between the GOP and the Democrats.

    The Democrats have repeatedly stated that the changes will have a severe impact on middle class families.

    They complained during the debate that they were not able to provide input on the tax bill, and they have not seen evidence from the Republicans to justify the tax cuts.

    In particular, Richard Neal, Democratic Representative for Massachusetts's 1st congressional district, said that the bill is the "worst piece of tax legislation in 29 years", and that the American economy has been growing for the last 88 months straight, long before Trump became president.

  16. Four sentenced over misleading investment scheme


    Defendants Samrat Bhandari, Dr Muhammad Aleem Mirza, Michael Moore and Paul Moore appeared at Southwark Crown Court today to be sentenced for operating an investment scheme which led to investors losing just over £1.4m between 2009 to 2014.

    Samrat Bhandari's sentencing was adjourned to January 2018. Dr Muhammad Aleem Mirza was sentenced to 15 months’ imprisonment. Michael Moore was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment and his brother Paul Moore to 9 months imprisonment.

    “The perpetrators of this scheme repeatedly misled investors for their own gain," said Mark Steward, director of enforcement and market oversight at the Financial Conduct Authority.

    "The FCA is committed to ensuring that the operators of unauthorised investment schemes are brought to justice and are accountable for their misconduct.”