This "investment" may bring forth some "green shoots".
David Cameron criticised over failure to declare wife Samantha’s business stake
Lewis Smith Author Biography
Friday 03 May 2013
David Cameron has been condemned for his failure to declare a family stake in a company planning a massive housing development.
The plan to build hundreds of homes on greenfield land in Lincolnshire is in an early stage but if it goes ahead is likely to push up land prices and benefit shareholders.
The Prime Minister’s wife, Samantha, holds shares in the firm involved in the development but Mr Cameron did not declare it in the ministerial list of interests, it was reported, despite his wife’s patronage of three charities and role as ambassador with the British Fashion Council being listed.
Paul Flynn, the Labour MP for Newport West and a member of the public administration select committee, told the Daily Telegraph that the shareholding should have been included in the ministerial list of interests and described the omission as “seriously naughty”.
The business behind the proposed development in Conesby farm is Firecrest Land which is half owned by Larkfleet which said this week that government plans to alter planning laws could be “beneficial” for the project.
The other half of Firecrest is, the Telegraph said, owned by Normanby Estate Holdings which is run by Sir Reginald Sheffield, the Prime Minister’s father-in-law.
A Cabinet Office spokesman said: “The Cabinet Secretary is satisfied that all procedures were followed correctly and that there is no conflict of interest.”
Green shoots of economic recovery found in Rainham. (cannabis shoots that is) The economy is picking up.
Drugs and stun gun found during raid in Rainham
Jane Ball, News Editor Sunday, May 5, 2013 (Romford Recorder)
Drugs and a stun gun were found by the Elm Park Safer neighbourhood team in a Rainham home.
A 22-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possession of drugs with intent to supply and possession of a firearm following the recent raid in Tuck Road by officers from the Territorial Support Group.
Sgt Darren Hepple said “:This was a great result for my team. We were especially pleased to have removed such a dangerous weapon off the streets of Havering. It also sends out a great message to local residents that Elm Park’s Safer Neighbourhood officers are hot on the tails of local criminals.”
Drugs and parking fines, two of the biggest 'growth industries' in Britain.
The penny price war: Poundland slashes prices to 97p to undercut 99p shop rivals
By Tara Evans
PUBLISHED: 18:11, 14 May 2013 | UPDATED: 18:11, 14 May 2013
Poundland has broken its rigid price structure by dropping prices to 97p in locations where rival 99p stores have opened up.
The discount retailer as diverted from its traditional £1 price in four shops so far, including its East Ham and Dudley stores, according to trade magazine Retail Week.
It is offering customer’s vouchers promoting ‘two for £1’ or one pound off when you buy six items.
Poundland – which has 400 stores nationwide – said it had adopted the new strategy because of ‘tactical’ reasons.
Double Dip has lost control of his party his a dead man walking the right wing will throw him out before the next election.
Ed has sold out to the establishment he looks like Bambi mark 2.
As for Clegg he sold his soul and kicked the students in the goolies for a taste of power.
None of them are any good they are all a bunch of merchant bankers.
Can we have much confidence in Mervyn King he never saw the banks going to the wall in 2008, he was bound to say something upbeat as this was his last quarterly meeting before he retires.
Unemployment was up yet again at record levels another 15000 out of work,the two posh boys have not got a clue they could not run a booze up in a brewery.
The UK has just had one lost decade, and is about to enter a second.
HSBC’s chief global economist has written a compelling but dark account of the challenges facing the West. Philip Aldrick considers the chilling claims.
7:00PM BST 18 May 2013
Bleak does not begin to describe the latest tome on the economic crisis by Stephen King, the HSBC chief global economist who appropriately shares a name with the best-selling horror writer.
When the Money Runs Out is the economic equivalent of post-apocalyptic fiction, charting “the end of Western affluence”, and gives the author of The Shining a run for his money when it comes to filling readers with dread.
Published this week, the chapter headings alone are enough to make you tremble; The Pain of Stagnation, From Economic Disappointment to Political Instability, Dystopia.
If anyone in Britain was labouring under the misapprehension that 0.3pc GDP growth in the first quarter of the year and signs of a manufacturing revival were something to cheer – and that includes the other King, Bank of England Governor Sir Mervyn – HSBC’s King puts them right.
Those aren’t green shoots, they are “bumps along bottom”. The country has just completed one “lost decade”, measured on growth per person, he says, and is about to enter a second.
(Reuters) - British retail sales dropped at their sharpest pace in a year last month, a reminder of weakness in the country's economy after some recent signs of recovery.
Sales of food plunged 4.1 percent from March, the worst showing in almost two years.
As the government prepared to face a call from the International Monetary Fund to do more to help growth, official data also underscored the size of the budget deficit, which hit a record high on one measure last month.
Retail sales volumes including automotive fuel fell 1.3 percent in April from March, the Office for National Statistics said on Wednesday. Compared with a year earlier, sales inched up 0.5 percent, with both readings much weaker than forecast by economists.
"Retail sales give a timely reminder why it's too premature to call the UK as being out of the woods," said Rob Wood, economist at Berenberg Bank.
"They highlight the challenges for the UK; households are struggling as price rises outstrip earnings, sharp government benefit cuts are going to start showing up in this data soon."
The pound fell and British government bond prices rose after the data releases. The IMF will deliver its annual report on Britain later in the day. Last month, its top officials said economic weakness had lasted too long and it was time to consider a new approach.
Royal Mint is accused over £5 coin ‘that’s not worth a penny’
Special issue: both sides of the £5 coin
24 May 2013
The Royal Mint is facing accusations that it is duping the public into buying commemorative coins that have no actual monetary value.
Richard Lobel, a leading numismatics dealer in London, warns that people are paying £9.95 for £5 coins which have no apparent worth because, despite assurances from the Royal Mint that they are legal tender, banks are generally not accepting them.
Speaking to the Evening Standard, he said that millions of these coins have been issued since 1990, bought by people who assumed they were keepsakes with some value. He regularly breaks the bad news to them: “We tell them ‘WE DON'T WANT THEM AND NO BANK WANTS THEM’.”
One coin company, which requested anonymity, discovered that it could not sell almost 3,000 of the coins when it tried to cash in on its original investment.
In an email seen by the Evening Standard, a Royal Mint executive told them: “It would not be possible for us to cash these in to the banks. The £5 coin is not in general circulation and so banks will not accept them. Because of the royalty agreement with the Treasury, it will also cause us problems if we treat commemorative coins like circulating coins.” Asked how the Royal Mint assesses their £5 value, Mr Lobel said: “They put the word £5 on it.”
‘60,000 stores to close in five years’ as our high streets begin to die
BRITAIN’S struggling high streets will be hit by more than 60,000 store closures in the next five years, a report out today warns.
By: Nathan Rao
Published: Tue, May 28, 2013
Another-closing-down-sale-as-the-UK-high-street-struggles-to-survive Another closing down sale as the UK high street struggles to survive
Experts say retailers are facing a crisis as running costs soar and people increasingly shop online.
The grim report – Retail Futures 2018 – predicts that 61,930 high street stores, one in five, will close by 2018, resulting in 316,000 job losses. It claims consumer spending has risen by just 12 per cent since 2006, while operating costs have rocketed by 20 per cent.
Meanwhile retailers with strong online profiles need just 70 high street stores to create a “national presence”, compared to 250 in the mid 2000s, according to the study by the Centre for Retail Research.
Professor Joshua Bamfield, director of the CRR, said: “Customers now shop in multiple ways, checking websites, visiting stores, reading reviews and making online price comparisons with smart phones whilst shopping.
“Retailers have to make clear responses to the changing pattern of how consumers shop, which includes tactical decisions about store numbers and locations.
“Going forward, I think retail stores will remain an important, although smaller, part of the shopping process as online retail continues to grow.”
The report claims online shopping will account for 21.5 per cent of total sales by 2018. The figure is currently 12.7 per cent. It says 164 more companies will go into administration by 2018, affecting 22,600 stores and 140,000 staff. This follows the collapse this year of HMV, camera chain Jessops and video chain Blockbusters.
The number of empty shops across the country has shot up from 5.4 per cent in 2008 to 14.1 per cent in March.