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. Get in touch: bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk
  2. Ryanair reports record profits
  3. FTSE 100 hits record high
  4. Rail shake-up 'will be disruptive'
  5. Qatar charges against Barclays dismissed
  6. UK 'turns blind eye to dirty Russian money'

Live Reporting

By Russell Hotten

All times stated are UK

Goodnight

That's it from us tonight. Thanks for reading. We'll be back at 6am tomorrow morning - so please come back then.

Wall Street closes on a high

Wall Street has ended the day higher thanks to the easing of trade tensions between the US and China.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 298.27 points, or 1.21%, to 25,013.36, the S&P 500 gained 20.04 points, or 0.74% to 2,733.01 and the Nasdaq Composite added 39.70 points, or 0.54% to 7,394.04

'The power of storytelling'

Michelle Obama
Getty Images

We heard from Barack Obama earlier on the Netflx deal he's signed with his wife. Now it's Michelle's turn.

"Barack and I have always believed in the power of storytelling to inspire us, to make us think differently about the world around us, and to help us open our minds and hearts to others," she said in a statement.

Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said the Obamas were "uniquely positioned to discover and highlight stories of people who make a difference in their communities and strive to change the world for the better."

Netflix has budgeted $8bn for programming in 2018, which also includes licensed content. In the past year, Netflix has signed successful TV producers Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy and is producing Martin Scorsese's next film starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino.

Netflix has aggressively pursued content acquisitions in recent years as it moves to compete with traditional Hollywood studios for films and original TV programming.

Microsoft buys AI company

Microsoft logo
Getty Images

Microsoft has acquired "conversational" AI firm Semantic Machines as it looks to improve the natural responses of its virtual assistant Cortana and other digital chatbots.

The technology giant said that while most virtual assistants of today could respond to basic commands and queries, the future of the tech was likely to lie in a more conversational approach.

Semantic Machines, based in California, uses machine learning to make bots respond in more natural ways to questions and make exchanges more conversational.

France to act over rail firm's huge debt

SNCF logo
AFP

France's Les Echos financial newspaper says the French government plans "to absorb" about €35bn of national railway operator SNCF's debt burden of around €47bn.

The plan, which would see the government take on chunks of SNCF's debt in 2020 and 2022, will be announced by Prime Minister Edouard Philippe to rail unions on Friday, the newspaper said, citing unnamed sources.

A spokesman for the government declined to comment.

The government has previously said it would start taking over a substantial part of SNCF's debt from 2020 as part of a restructuring, but had not said how much it would absorb.

Workers of the debt-ridden state-run company have been carrying out rolling strikes since the start of April, downing tools for two out of every five days until June 28, in protest against the changes.

Trump imposes more Venezuela sanctions

Nicolas Maduro
AFP

Donald Trump has tightened financial sanctions on Venezuela after what he called the country's "sham" general election result.

The US president has banned the purchase by any US organisation or firm of Venezuelan debt. It stops the country from raising money from US financial institutions.

The move follows the re-election of Nicolas Maduro (above) for a second six-year term.

Three US rate rises this year?

Rising inflation means the Federal Reserve should hike interest rates two or possibly three more times this year, and could move as soon as next month, Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said on Monday.

Harker, a centrist at the US central bank, said that while he currently sees two more rate rises this year, after an initial policy-tightening in March, "it is possible that we see an acceleration of inflation that I could be supportive of a third" rise.

"I do think it is prudent to continue to move away from the zero lower bound when we can," Harker said, adding: Inflation "does seem to be moving toward 2%... and there is not much slack in the labour markets, so I think it's appropriate to continue to move rates up judiciously."

Theresa May

Pallab Ghosh

Science correspondent, BBC News

The Prime Minister makes the strongest commitment yet to "fully associate" the UK with the EU's £68bn research programme post-Brexit.

Read more

Tesla's Model 3 fails to get key endorsement

Model 3
Tesla

More bad news for Tesla. The highly-influential US publication Consumer Reports has decided against giving Tesla's Model 3 a recommendation.

Although the magazine found plenty to love, difficult controls and average brakes meant there was no endorsement.

Getting approval from the non-profit Consumer Reports, which does not carry advertising, is considered a badge of honour among businesses.

It has previously strongly praised Tesla Model S. Not so the Model 3.

The magazine said the Tesla's stopping distance of 152 feet from 60 mph was far worse than any contemporary car tested by Consumer Reports and about seven feet longer than the stopping distance of a Ford F-150 full-sized pickup, the magazine said.

Tesla said: "Tesla's own testing has found braking distances with an average of 133 feet when conducting the 60-0 mph stops using the 18" Michelin all season tire and as low as 126 feet with all tires currently available.

"Unlike other vehicles, Tesla is uniquely positioned to address more corner cases over time through over-the-air software updates, and it continually does so to improve factors such as stopping distance."

Aston Martin profits hit by higher spending

Aston Martin DB11
Aston Martin

British carmaker Aston Martin remained in the black in the first quarter of 2018, although pre-tax profit fell due to a weaker dollar and investment on a series of model launches.

After six years of losses, James Bond's favourite carmaker swung to a pre-tax profit in 2017, fuelling speculation of a potential stock market listing.

In an interview with Reuters on Monday, finance director Mark Wilson reiterated the decision would be a matter for its shareholders, mainly Italian private equity fund Investindustrial and a group of Kuwaiti investors.

"We continue to look at our options and we are continuing to execute on the plan and that gives our shareholders the most options available to them," he told Reuters when asked about a flotation.

Pre-tax profit fell by just over half to £2.8m in the first three months of the year due to the weaker dollar, as around a third of its demand comes from customers buying in dollars or a currency pegged to it.

Carl Icahn files lawsuit against AmTrust

Carl Icahn
Getty Images

Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn has filed a lawsuit against AmTrust Financial Services and the family that controls the company, accusing them of trying to take the insurer private at the wrong time and at the wrong price.

The lawsuit filed in the Court of Delaware accuses Karfunkel-Zyskind family of engaging in a transaction which will transfer "huge amounts of value" belonging to the company's public stockholders to the controlling family.

Earlier on Monday Czech-based Arca Capital, which own 2.4% of total outstanding shares of AmTrust, said it plans to work with Icahn and other minority shareholders in opposing the proposed privatisation transaction.

Icahn had disclosed a 9.38% stake in AmTrust on 17 May.

Obamas sign Netflix deal

Barack and Michelle Obama
The White House

Here's more on the production deal that Netflix has signed with Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.

The former US president said in a statement: "One of the simple joys of our time in public service was getting to meet so many fascinating people from all walks of life and to help them share their experiences with a wider audience/

"That's why Michelle and I are so excited to partner with Netflix - we hope to cultivate and curate the talented, inspiring, creative voices who are able to promote greater empathy and understanding between peoples, and help them share"

Under the name Higher Ground Productions, the Obamas have the option to produce scripted and unscripted series, documentaries and feature films, said Netflix, which has some 125 million subscribers worldwide.

Obama's to produce Netflix content

Barack and Michelle Obama
The White House

Former US President Barack Obama and wife Michelle Obama have entered into a multi-year agreement with Netflix to produce films and series, the online streaming company has announced.

Under the name Higher Ground Productions, the Obamas have the options to produce scripted and unscripted series, documentaries and feature films, Netflix said in a statement.

Please don't go ...

View more on twitter

Have you noticed a flurry of emails in your inbox asking you to give companies permission to carry on messaging you?

Well, you're not the only one - BBC technology Correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones has been getting them too.

So what's going on?

This coming Friday, a new EU law kicks in. It's called the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and it changes how companies use our personal information.

The emails you've been getting are essentially telling you that companies which hold data on you - so shops you've bought from, clubs you've joined - have rewritten their terms and conditions.

Those long terms and conditions documents that most people click past because they are really long and full of jargon will have to be written in language that's easy to understand.

And you, as the customer, must specifically "'opt in" to sharing your data and can ask for it to be removed at any time.

New train schedules, same old problems

A shake-up of train services came in today, but disgruntled passengers are reporting the same old issues.

View more on twitter

FTSE 100 notches up record high

The FTSE 100 closed just over 1% higher to reach a record high of 7,859.17 points, with retailers and mining shares among the big risers. Just nine FTSE 100 stocks ended lower.

Cross-Channel transport disarray?

BBC business editor tweets:

US Supreme Court backs companies over worker class-action claims

Getty Images
Getty Images

The US Supreme Court delivered a blow to the rights of workers on Monday by allowing companies to require them to sign away their ability to bring class-action claims against management, agreements already in place for about 25 million employees.

The justices, in a 5-4 ruling with the court's conservatives in the majority, endorsed the legality of the growing practice by companies to compel workers to sign arbitration agreements waiving their right to bring class-action claims on issues such as overtime wages or gender-based pay disparities either in court or before private arbitrators.

President Donald Trump's administration last year reversed the government's stance in the case, siding with the companies after former President Barack Obama's administration had supported a US National Labor Relations Board decision invalidating such employment agreements.

Justice Neil Gorsuch, Trump's appointee to the court, wrote the ruling, saying federal arbitration law takes precedence over the National Labor Relations Act.

"The policy may be debatable but the law is clear: Congress has instructed that arbitration agreements like those before us must be enforced as written," Gorsuch wrote.

Nafta: major issues remain, say Mnuchin

Steve Mnuchin
Reuters

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says major issues remain in talks between the US, Mexico and Canada to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. "There are still some very significant, open issues," Mnuchin said in an interview on CNBC.

"We'll see where we get over the next few weeks," he said, adding that he thinks there is still a desire among the three countries to reach a new Nafta agreement.

"We're still trying to get a new deal done. That is a priority for the president," Mnuchin told CNBC. He added that Trump administration remained focused on crafting a new Nafta deal that would require congressional approval, but that Trump could consider a possible so-called "skinny deal" that would not.

Apple 'sweat-proof' headphones in court

Woman exercising wearing earphones
Beatsbydre

A US judge has ruled legal action against Apple over its Powerbeats headphones can go ahead "in part".

Seven customers, from various US cities, say the headphones do not hold their charge for as long as Apple advertises and they are not as water- or sweat-proof as claimed.

The judge said the sweat-proof claims "require amendment" but the challenge regarding battery life could proceed.

District judge Richard Seeborg said the case could go ahead but some amendments were required to the allegations the headphone failed when in contact with sweat despite being marketed as activity wear.

Apple had asked for all claims to be dismissed.