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Lloyds Bank: Business confidence slips from record high as firms look to global recovery

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Overall business confidence falls from record high in July, but remains well above its long-run average. Business expectations for sales and orders suggest that economic activity will continue to be solid but at a more modest pace in the first half of 2015. UK businesses urged to explore export markets beyond Europe and the US as global recovery remains volatile. The twice-yearly report, now in its 23rd year, gathers the views of over 1,500 UK businesses and tracks the overall “balance” of opinion on a range of important performance and ... Read More »

Barclays: Six out of ten UK homeowners are confused about when interest rate may rise

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Almost half (46 per cent) of homeowners aren’t able to recall what the current Bank of England base rate is Nine in ten (88 per cent) are completely unaware of the Bank of England’s recent interest rate forecast Half of homeowners with variable rate mortgages aren’t aware that their repayments could rise next year Over three quarters (76 per cent) aren’t putting money aside for interest rate increases, despite the Centre of Economic Business (Cebr) predicting a minimum total mortgage payment rise of £723.8 million across the UK Accordi... Read More »

Halifax: Yule log ons – Christmas day no longer a banking holiday for many

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More than one in ten active online banking customers checked their bank account on Christmas Day 71% of log ins are now on mobile and tablet devices Counting the cost of Christmas – 105 applications for credit cards and 215 applications for overdrafts made on Christmas Day There was also a significant increase in customers signing in using a mobile device. Of the customers who logged on on Christmas Day 9% were on a tablet, 62% were through mobile banking, and 22% via a desktop demonstrating the shift in customer behaviour to mobile digi... Read More »

Vodafone: Thirtieth anniversary of first UK mobile phone call

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Britain's first-ever mobile phone call was made on Vodafone’s UK network 30 years ago Michael Harrison, the son of Vodafone’s first Chairman, made the call on 1 January 1985 Thirty years later, Vodafone is an industry leader with 438 million customers, mobile operations in 26 countries and fixed broadband operations in 17 countries Michael Harrison secretly left his family’s New Year’s Eve party at their home in Surrey in the UK to surprise his father, calling him from London’s Parliament Square. Harrison made the historic call from one ... Read More »

SSEPD’s multi-million pound boost for good causes keeping the lights on

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The electricity distributor has this week directly donated £1m to four UK charities and also created a £1.3m fund for community groups and not-for-profit organisations. An independent panel will decide which projects should be given a grant from the Resilient Communities Fund. Applications will open in 2015, when more details will be published. Funding will be available for projects to help communities prepare for emergency weather events, either through provision for vulnerable households, improvement in communications or enhancement of com... Read More »

Halifax: Greenwich is UK’s top house price performer in 2014

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Based on Halifax's own house price data, the average house price in this south east corner of the capital was 24.6% higher than in the previous year, increasing from £263,183 to £328,044 in 2014. This is a significantly faster increase than in London as a whole, which saw price growth of 13% over the same time. Ealing, in West London, experienced the second biggest rise in average house prices with an increase of 24.5%. Nine of the ten areas with the strongest price growth in the past year are in London; these include Tower Hamlets (22.0%), ... Read More »

Aviva: Childcare costs see parents of 0-5s work for less that £100 a month

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Parents of 0-5s juggle earnings with childcare expenses 1 in 10 families using childcare for 0-5s say lower earner takes home nothing after childcare / work costs are paid Lower earner typically brings home just £243 after childcare / work costs are paid One in three families using childcare for 0-5s turn to grandparents Working parents are being hamstrung by childcare costs, with thousands effectively working for nothing, Aviva can reveal. The company surveyed 2,000 families with children aged 0-5 and discovered that, for all who pa... Read More »

Aviva: Incomes rise for UK families but debts soar over last six months

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Typical household income is up by four percent since July 2014 But household debt more than doubles in same period to more than £16,000 More families are saving regularly, but the size of savings pots has shrunk More families protect their loved ones with life insurance and critical illness cover While family income has risen to £2,012 a month on average, up four per cent in six months, families have seen a three per cent increase in expenditure and are taking on more debt, while the spectre of interest rate rises, which would increase... Read More »

Thames Water forms new infrastructure alliance

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The new coalition has further potential to deliver water networks and developer services for Thames Water for up to the next 15 years. Agility, comprising J. Murphy & Sons and Morrison Utility Services, and KCD, Kier Services Ltd and Clancy Docwra, were selected following a rigorous procurement process. A total of 130 assessors from 17 Thames Water departments evaluated submissions from potential delivery partners over the past three months. Both Agility and KCD were selected for having the appropriate capacity and capability to de... Read More »

BT launches biggest ever broadband deals for new customers, starting from £4.75*

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New customers wishing to make use of BT’s superfast fibre optic broadband can benefit from BT Infinity for £7.50 monthly, including the BT Home Hub 5. For those looking for the ultimate entertainment package, BT’s all new Starter Pack is on offer for £13.49 monthly, which includes BT Infinity, BT TV, BT Sport as well as Netflix. Those that sign up before January 7, 2015 will receive a Sainsbury’s gift card ranging in value from £75 to £125. David McDonald, director of Broadband, TV & Sport Bundles, BT Consumer, said: “We are giving consu... Read More »

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