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Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

  1. That's all for now

    Alas we have to close the Business Live page a little early today, as are low on staff.

    We will open up again at 06:00 on Friday morning.

  2. BreakingPoundworld to disappear from High Street

    The administrators of Poundworld have announced the closure of its remaining stores.

    Another 78 stores are to close will close by Sunday 29 July and another 112 stores by 10 August.

    That will result in 2,339 job losses.

    Administrators have been closing the firm's 335 stores since it went into administration in June.

  3. Cliff-edge Brexit fears back in boardrooms

    Simon Jack

    BBC Business Editor

    Oranges on a stall

    Thursday's warning from Brussels to EU businesses to step up preparations for a no-deal Brexit is timely.

    It arrives alongside a palpable shift in the minds of UK business leaders on the probability of leaving without a negotiated deal.

    It has gone up - and many UK companies are intensifying and accelerating their contingency plans to mitigate potentially severe disruption.

    Across the board, firms feel the cliff-edge is getting uncomfortably close.

    One food retailer told me "no deal is looking more likely - we are getting pretty worried. We're looking at a number of options to make sure we can get food into the UK."

    One option is to apply for Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status, which can offer priority with border procedures.

    It's a bit like a frequent flying, executive club member who gets priority boarding when there's a crush at the gate. It costs money but an increasing number of businesses consider it a useful bit of insurance.

    As one told me: "It comes with costs but we think we might pull the trigger on that now."

    Read Simon's full blog here

  4. Teaching the elite to fly helicopters

    Video content

    Video caption: Teaching the elite to fly helicopters

    Staying with an aviation theme. The UK's Empire Test Pilots' School (ETPS) has just taken delivery of four state-of-the-art helicopters - flying classrooms that will help civilian and military test pilots perfect their flying skills, reports the BBC's international business correspondent Theo Leggett.

  5. Are electric planes on the way?

  6. Sky shares hit by Comcast decision

    Sky shares have fallen back after Comcast pulled out of the deal to buy 21st Century Fox assets, saying it preferred to focus its efforts on Sky and a move into Europe.

    Sky shares are down 2.45% in London trade.

    "If Disney were to cede on this then the price for Sky would most likely be much less given that Sky would no longer have access to either the Disney or 21st Century Fox content catalogue, which may help explain some of this afternoon’s weakness," says Michael Hewson, chief Market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

  7. Snoop Dogg success in trademark action

    Snoop Dogg in concert

    Rapper Snoop Dogg has successfully opposed a UK trademark application for ‘Snoop’.

    Snoop International had applied to register the name, which was accepted in 2016.

    However, the rapper opposed the trademark based on his own trademarks for Snoop Dogg, Snoop Juice, and Snoop Lion.

    Snoop Dogg also alleged that Snoop International’s owner, Michael Gleissner, owns various UK trademarks for “blocking purposes”.

    Mr Gleissner filed a counter-statement in 2017 denying all grounds.

    The UK Intellectual Property Office upheld Snoop Dogg's opposition, and has ordered Snoop International to pay £1,300 compensation.

  8. 'A lot more clarity to this four-way dance'

    “I suspect Disney will now be motivated to let Sky go and perhaps also let go of the minority stake [in Sky] at a mutually acceptable valuation,” says Tuna Amobi, senior equity analyst at CFRA Research.

    “The valuation is obviously a major issue... that needs to be resolved.”

    He adds: “This has paved the way for Disney to move forward with Fox and provided an added rationale for Disney to perhaps back off and allow Comcast to acquire Sky.

    “This I think provides a lot more clarity to the resolution of this four-way dance”

  9. Comcast shares surge as Wall Street opens behind

    Comcast logo

    Wall Street stocks were down in early trade, with several companies falling.

    But Comcast shares surged after the company exited a bidding war with Disney for Fox media assets. Camcast shares were up 2.89% in early trading.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average was at 25,139.62, down 0.2%. The broader S&P 500 also dropped 0.2 % to 2,810.40, ahd the tech-based Nasdaq slipped 0.1 percent to 7,844.35.

  10. Sterling still down v the US dollar

    Sterling remains down against the greenback, behind by 0.67% in Thursday trading, at $1.2981.

  11. Bumpy ride

    Confused about the current media landscape in light of Comcast's decision to abandon its Fox bid?

    Rani Molla, data editor at Recode, has tweeted her handy graphic here:

    View more on twitter
  12. BreakingShareholders reject Royal Mail execs pay package

    Royal Mail says shareholders have rejected a pay package for its senior executives.

    It said 70.17% of votes cast by shareholders at the annual meeting were against the resolution on the director's remuneration report.

    The company has faced a backlash from shareholder advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis over a 17% jump in new chief executive Rico Back's salary to £640,000 compared to that of previous boss Moya Greene.

  13. 'Congratulations to Disney'

    Quote Message: I’d like to congratulate Bob Iger and the team at Disney and commend the Murdoch family and Fox for creating such a desirable and respected company from Brian L Roberts Chairman and chief executive, Comcast Corporation
    Brian L RobertsChairman and chief executive, Comcast Corporation
  14. Comcast shares up in pre-market trading

    Shares of Comcast were up 2.2% in pre-market trade, while Fox fell 1%..Walt Disney sahres were up marginally.

    "Comcast does not intend to pursue further the acquisition of the Twenty-First Century Fox assets and instead will focus on our recommended offer for Sky," the company said .

    Disney had trumped Comcast's $66bn all-cash challenge to its deal for the Fox last month by upping its offer to $7bn in cash and shares .

    Fox shareholders had been scheduled to vote on the Disney deal on 27.

    Comcast will now focus on the $34bn offer to acquire 61% of Sky. Fox, which owns 39% of Sky, has been also seeking to acquire the majority stake.

  15. Trump hints at employment news

    US president Donald Trump is particularly chatty today - he has just tweeted about an important meeting this afternoon.

    In a previous tweet admonishing the media, he says that many US publications are ignoring "all of the economic and jobs records being set".

    View more on twitter
  16. BreakingComcast 'to focus on Sky'

    Comcast has said it doesn't intend to pursue the further acquisition of 21st Century Fox, according to Reuters.

    It wants to focus on the Sky acquisition, Bloomberg reports