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Shoppers in the UK are in a worse place than during the last recession, the group finance director of one of the country's biggest supermarket chains told CNBC Thursday.
The financial services industry must be allowed to breathe in order to avoid a mass exodus out of London, Lord Levene, former chairman of Lloyd's of London, told CNBC.
Remember the collapse of Lehman Brothers ? Europeans certainly do. As Europe struggles to contain its government debt crisis, the greatest fear is that one of the Continent’s major banks may fail.
George Osborne should drop the 50p top rate of income tax “at the earliest opportunity” to boost growth, according to 20 high-profile economists writing in the FT.
European shares fell sharply on Monday amid renewed fears over the euro zone debt crisis and a warning from Deutsche Bank’s CEO on the outlook for banks.
With the financial system facing renewed stress and global growth faltering economists at Goldman Sachs are predicting Britain will embark on a second round of quantitative easing in the coming months.
The austerity measures implemented by British finance minister George Osborne risk pushing the UK economy into recession, Bill Gross, the manager of PIMCO, said in an interview with the Times newspaper.
Without "major surgery" on companies' annual reports, investors' trust will continue to diminish, impacting on growth, James Roberts, a partner at accountancy firm BDO, said as his firm released new research showing reports remain a crucial influence when it comes to investment decisions.
"We know we are in a false market we know the markets wouldn¿t be where it was were it not for the intervention of the ECB, and you know it your water that isn¿t right because someone has got to pay for that in the end this is going to come from the national government," Nick Beecroft, senior markets consultant at Saxo Bank told CNBC. He added the market had chosen to focus on the US economy but that it would return to the euro zone debt crisis within a month.
The British Chamber of Commerce cut its growth forecasts for the UK for this year and next and said the weaker-than-predicted economy means interest rates will have to stay low longer than expected.
"Inflation fears at the start of the year were always something I was skeptical about and which I always thought were overdone," Bob Parker, senior advisor at Credit Suisse, told CNBC. However, he added he was concerned that inflation could become an issue in 2013.
Germany is playing a cat and mouse game with less successful European economies as negotiations over the euro zone crisis continue at the country level, Giles Keating, head of research at Credit Suisse, told CNBC Friday.
Short sellers and securities lenders have remained calm in spite of controversial short selling bans for bank stocks introduced in Europe this month, the FT says.
"In terms of global competitiveness what you see is the US has gained leaps and bounds versus Europe. Now, clearly emerging markets are still very competitive on an absolute cost and wage basis, they are still the leaders. However, once you add logistic costs and other associated costs the US is still very competitive at this point," Virginie Maisonneuve, head of multi-regional equities at Schroders. "You are seeing companies like Volkswagen going into places like Tennessee and getting cost on an hourly basis of $17 to $18 an hour, remember the likes of GM were firing at a cost of around $90 an hour so very much competitive."
Companies face a scramble to hire talented executives with Chinese experience to join their boards as the focus of UK business shifts increasingly towards the east, the FT reports.
"For the Swiss franc to look like an attractive funding currency again when it is in competition with so many other currencies at the moment we would need to see....direct intervention on the part of the Swiss National Bank," Adam Cole, head of currency strategy, RBC. He added that he did not expect much in the way of dovish comments from Fed chairman Ben Bernanke when he speaks on Friday.
Despite the widespread gloom, the consensus is that Britain will not re-enter a recession, Norma Cohen writes in the FT.
UK households saw their finances deteriorate faster than during the height of the recession in 2009 in August, a survey showed on Monday, in a sign that the economic recovery remains fragile in the country as prices rise and incomes fall.
"The second quarter figures we are expecting from Credit Agricole should not bring any kind of surprise, because it has already made a profit warning in late July. The funding issue is not peculiar to Credit Agricole, but there is a real issue in general with funding for French banks," Christophe Nijdam, banking analyst at Alphavalue, told CNBC's Investing Edge.
Executives from Hewlett Packard will meet UK Business Secretary Vince Cable next week to discuss the 7.1 billion pounds ($11.7 billion) takeover of Autonomy, one of the UK's biggest software companies.