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Live Reporting

By Mary-Ann Russon

All times stated are UK

  1. Vodafone switches on 5G in seven UK cities

    Family on sofa holding 5G logo

    Vodafone has become the second UK mobile operator to turn on its 5G network, offering faster speeds and the opportunity for new services.

    The network is going live in seven UK cities, including Cardiff, London, Manchester and Glasgow.

    Making a success of the service could be crucial to the firm which has seen financial losses and customer complaints in recent years.

    5G networks offer more capacity than 4G with speeds up to 100 times faster.

    It could also help support new technologies such as artificial intelligence, the internet of things, robotics, connected cities and self-driving cars.

    The three other cities to benefit are Birmingham, Bristol and Liverpool.

    Read full story here

  2. Bitcoin battles

    Nouriel Roubini

    Outspoken economist Nouriel Roubini, nicknamed Dr Doom for his gloomy warnings, has caused a stir with his latest attack on Bitcoin and its fellow cryptocurrencies.

    Prof Roubini, who foresaw the financial crisis, says Bitcoin is "overhyped".

    At a summit in Taiwan on Tuesday, he likened it to a "cesspool".

    But his sparring partner at the event, who runs a cryptocurrency exchange, has angered the professor by blocking the release of video of the event.

    Read more here.

  3. 'Sainsbury’s sits in an odd place'

    Quote Message: Without the Asda deal, Sainsbury’s sits in an odd place in the market and I suspect the board are wondering what the next move should be. Asda is the cheapest of the Big Four, Tesco buys at the lowest prices because of its scale and reaches the most people, and Morrisons is the second biggest food manufacturer in the country. They all have a USP. The USP of Sainsbury’s used to be quality but with Ocado growing, potentially merging with M&S, and Waitrose’s reputation, the prize for quality probably does not sit with Sainsbury’s anymore. from Mark Jones Food and drink expert at law firm Gordons
    Mark JonesFood and drink expert at law firm Gordons
  4. No pocket money from Biz Live readers

    Child with jar of pocket money

    Business Live readers are a savvy bunch, preferring to put their kids to work or help them out here and there, rather than giving them a regular allowance.

    Barry from Amersham said: "I don’t give my daughter regular pocket money, I just help her when she needs it."

    Meanwhile, Lloyd emailed in to say: "We give our son NO pocket money. We asked him to find a way to earn his own ‘wages’."

    Lloyd's seven-year-old son, Rueben, makes lavender-filled drawer fresheners and car air fresheners made with "home grown herbs" that he sells on a website.

    "He gives half to charity and keeps half," Lloyd said.

    "His pocket money is what he wants to earn and how hard he wants to work. He has even got a stall at his up and coming school fete which he is excited about."

    How do you feel about pocket money? Email us at

  5. FCA may ban crypto-derivatives


    The Financial Conduct Authority wants to ban retail customers from buying financial instruments that are tied to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

    The value of cryptocurrencies can be very volatile, which could leave those investing in derivatives of those currencies shouldering significant losses.

    The FCA "considers these products are ill-suited to retail consumers who cannot reliably assess the value and risks of derivatives or exchange traded notes (ETNs) that reference certain crypto-assets," the regulator said in a statement.

  6. Police raid Renault HQ

    Carlos Ghosn

    French police have raided Renault's headquarters as they investigate a lavish wedding party thrown by the carmaker's former CEO Carlos Ghosn, according to AFP.

    Police are reportedly looking to find out whether Mr Ghosn wrongly used company resources to waive a €50,000 fee for a plush wedding venue in the outskirts of Paris.

    Mr Ghosn, the big-spending former chief of both Renault and its Japanese partner Nissan - who is awaiting trial in Japan on charges of financial misconduct - hired the entire Palace of Versailles when he got married in October 2016.

    The former executive's lawyer, Jean-Yves Le Borgne, told AFP in February that the businessman "thought it was free" because he was never billed by Versailles and was ready to pay the money back.

    Mr Ghosn is accused of under-reporting millions of dollars in income at Nissan and of of using company funds for personal expenses - charges he denies.

  7. Good news for shoppers

    Supermarket shopper

    Shop prices have fallen for the first time in eight months after high street retailers resorted to heavy discounts to lure cash-strapped shoppers amid the recent wet weather.

    Prices were down 0.1% in June - the first fall since October last year - and a marked reversal of the 0.8% inflation recorded in May, according to the British Retail Consortium-Nielsen shop price index.

    Non-food price deflation drove the fall, with a drop of 1.2% as the cost of clothing and footwear, furniture, electricals, DIY and other categories were all below the level of June 2015 prices.

    But food inflation held steady at 1.8% as fresh food price increases eased back to 1.4% from 1.5% in May.

  8. Boris Johnson promises review on 'sin taxes'

    Boris Johnson

    Boris Johnson has promised to review so-called "sin taxes" to see if they unfairly target those on lower incomes.

    The Tory leadership contender wants to examine whether levies on tobacco, alcohol and sugar are effective, and has vowed not to introduce any new ones until the review is complete.

    Mr Johnson said Brexit would allow the UK to examine its tax policy.

    It comes after both leadership candidates were asked at a hustings abouta proposed new tax on milkshakes.

    Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said he would rather target manufacturers than taxpayers when it came to less healthy products.

  9. Shetland oil terminal to cut 80 jobs

    Sullom Voe

    Oil company EnQuest is to cut about a fifth of its workforce at the Sullom Voe terminal in Shetland.

    About 80 jobs are set to go as the operator launches a cost-cutting move in a bid to secure new business.

    The company is currently in talks with former operator BP to continue exporting oil from the Clair Field west of Shetland via an existing pipeline.

    EnQuest is trying to retain the vital contract and stop oil being loaded offshore and by-passing the terminal.

    Read more here.

    Shetland oil terminal to cut 80 jobs

    Sullom Voe

    Oil company EnQuest is to cut about a fifth of its workforce at the Sullom Voe terminal in Shetland.

    Read more
  10. Pound sinks

    Pound, euro and dollar notes

    The value of the pound dipped today after Bank of England Governor, Mark Carney, warned that a global trade war and a no-deal Brexit were growing risks to Britain's economy that may require a response from the bank.

    That, twinned with gloomy data from IHS Markit/CIPS suggesting that the UK economy shrank slightly in the second quarter, has seen investors increase bets on an interest rate cut.

    The pound fell 0.2% against the euro and the dollar with £1 now worth €1.11 and $1.26.

  11. Serco apologises 'unreservedly'

    A man wearing an ankle tag

    Outsourcing giant Serco has apologised 'unreservedly' after being fined £19.2m for fraud and false accounting over its electronic tagging service for the Ministry of Justice (MOJ).

    The fine is part of a deferred prosecution deal with the Serious Fraud Office, which will end an investigation that began in 2013.

    Serco had been understating how profitable the contract had been in its reporting to the MOJ.

    Back in 2013 the company paid £70m in compensation to the government.

    Read more here.

  12. Lee Iacocca, father of the Ford Mustang, dies aged 94

    Lee Iacocca

    Lee Iacocca, the car industry legend who created the iconic Ford Mustang and saved Chrysler from bankruptcy, has died at the age of 94.

    He died at his home in Los Angeles from complications from Parkinson's disease, a family spokeswoman told US media.

    Mr Iacocca is also remembered for his appearances in Chrysler ads in the US, pointing at viewers and telling them: "If you find a better car, buy it!"

    In a statement, the company said it was "saddened" by the news of his death.

    Read more here.

  13. 'Services businesses remain cautious'

    Quote Message: “After what felt like a short reprieve from the uncertainty affecting businesses, the current heightened lack of clarity appears to be weighing heavy on the UK’s services sector once again. Perhaps understandably, services businesses generally remain cautious, with some putting the brakes on investment and instead opting to hold on to cash until the current fog of uncertainty lifts. Despite this, it is a hugely diverse sector and there are sub-sectors that are continuing to evidence healthy demand.” from Allan Ramsay Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking
    Allan RamsayLloyds Bank Commercial Banking
  14. 'No comfort in services survey'

    Quote Message: A weakened services report completes a thoroughly miserable set of June purchasing managers surveys. While the services sector did at least manage to eke out marginal growth in June according to the survey compared to the marked contraction in the manufacturing and construction sectors, there really was very little in the report to take comfort from. from Howard Archer Chief Economic Advisor, EY ITEM Club
    Howard ArcherChief Economic Advisor, EY ITEM Club
  15. 'Purplebricks bubble has burst'

    Quote Message: Purplebricks may have been hailed as the future for the property sector back at its launch in 2012, but the bubble has quickly burst as the online estate agent struggles to keep its head above water amidst challenging domestic conditions and a failing global expansion. from Julie Palmer Partner at Begbies Traynor
    Julie PalmerPartner at Begbies Traynor
  16. 'UK economy shrinks' in Q2


    It looks as though Britain's economy shrank in the second quarter with news that the services economy barely grew in June against a backdrop of worries over Brexit.

    Carefully watched data from IHS Markit/CIPS, who survey purchasing managers, say their index fell to 50.2 in June, below the 51 that had been expected, which would have seen growth remain flat.

    Equivalent surveys for manufacturing and construction published earlier this week showed that those sectors contracted in June, meaning Britain's economy overall probably shrank by 0.1% in the second quarter, according to IHS/CIPS.

    "The latest downturn has followed a gradual deterioration in demand over the past year as Brexit-related uncertainty has increasingly exacerbated the impact of a broader global economic slowdown," Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, said.

  17. FTSE hits year high


    The FTSE 100 edged over the 7,600 mark for the first time since last August in early trading this morning.

    It marks a 0.5% improvement on yesterday's closing price. Before this month, the FTSE 100's record for the year was set in April when it was trading at 7,523.

  18. Aberdeen FC shareholders vote backs private company move

    Aberdeen v Celtic

    Shareholders have voted in favour of Aberdeen FC becoming a private limited company.

    Chairman Stewart Milne said last month thatchanging from a public limited company could unlock £2m of potential investment in the club, as well as making it easier to attract more capital in future.

    A circular detailing the proposal was issued to all shareholders.

    A vote was held at a general meeting at Pittodrie on Tuesday afternoon.

  19. TikTok's young fans 'exploited' for digital gifts

    Video-sharing app TikTok says it is "sorry" that some children and other young people have felt pressured into sending money to their favourite influencers on the app.

    TikTok lets fans send their favourite videomakers "digital gifts", which can cost up to £48.99.

    A BBC investigation found influencers promising to share their phone numbers with fans in exchange for the gifts.

    TikTok said it would strengthen its policies and guidelines but did not explain exactly how.