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The Independent (U.K.) 

First-time buyers fix deals in droves as rate hikes loom

The share of first-time buyers fixing mortgage payments to ward off the impact of potential interest rate rises has reached an all-time high, according to figures compiled for The Independent.

Chocolate demand hits the sweet spot

Global demand for chocolate is pushing the price of cocoa beans to a three-year high as West African farmers struggle to keep up with demand.

High-frequency trader halts $3bn float as FBI probes ‘flash boys’

One of the world’s biggest high-frequency traders has shelved plans for a $3bn (£1.8bn) float amid an FBI probe and a furore whipped up by bestselling financial author Michael Lewis’s exposé of the controversial practice.

Our top 10 stocks are beating the Footsie again …

_The Independent_’s 10 stocks to follow are on course to beat the FTSE 100 for the fifth successive year – just.

Jim Armitage: The boss of the DRC’s state-owned mining operation remains defiant despite uncomfortable questions over its controversial asset sales

For the man controlling the most powerful company in the vast and war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo, Albert Yuma is, on first impressions, a fairly unprepossessing chap.

Mark Leftly: Austerity and pension problems leave PCS facing a takeover, not a merger

Westminster Outlook The Public & Commercial Services Union was forged in trauma and will end in capitulation.

RBS was 'rude and aggressive' in dealing with struggling businesses

Royal Bank of Scotland has been cleared by an international law firm of allegations that it systematically forced viable businesses into bankruptcy.

Co-op chief warns of four-year struggle after its £2.5bn loss

The interim chief executive of Co-operative Group warned it would take at least four years to turn the business around after the mutual reported a record £2.5bn loss yesterday.

Goldman Sachs reveals profit dip amid 'dark pools' furore

Goldman Sachs found itself being quizzed on controversial issues surrounding high-frequency trading on Wall Street yesterday as it posted an 11 per cent fall in first-quarter profits.

Market Report: Strong results from Wall Street stalwarts raise hopes for UK lenders

Banks helped the Footsie to edge higher after the sector was boosted by better-than-expected results from counterparts in the US.

Mulberry cuts prices as it warns on profits

Mulberry performed a strategic U-turn yesterday, pledging to cut the prices of its high-end handbags as it issued its fourth profit warning in two years.

'Evidence destroyed' in war of the tycoons

The biggest High Court case of the year – the £2bn claim by the Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk that two fellow compatriots and billionaires duped him out of a mining project worth hundreds of millions of pounds – has heard the concerns of Mr Pinchuk about the destruction of potentially vital evidence.

Wimpey sees danger in soaring house prices

The chief executive of one of Britain's biggest housebuilders warned yesterday that soaring property price inflation in London is "not healthy" as the company unveiled a 22 per cent rise in average selling prices in the past year.

A new future with concrete and chips: Tech entrepreneurs honoured by the Royal Academy of Engineering are showing the way

The collapse of the banking sector in 2008 showed just how reliant the British economy had become on the City of London for growth, jobs and general prosperity. The recession that followed those dark days exposed the need to rebuild the non-financial side of the economy, but after years of neglect can our manufacturing ever recapture the success it once enjoyed?

Diageo and Remy Cointreau hit by China's crackdown on luxury gifts

The crackdown on extravagant gifts in China by President Xi Jinping has claimed its latest victims as Diageo and Remy Cointreau were both forced to swallow tumbles in sales

Google and IBM quarterly results 'disappoint'

Fears that the technology sector is overheating grew last night as Google and IBM posted disappointing quarterly results.

Axed Henrique de Castro received $58 million after 15 months at Yahoo

Yahoo’s axed chief operating officer left the internet giant with a pay package worth $58 million (£34 million) — after 15 months in the job.

Mulberry to 'cut prices' after fourth profit warning

Mulberry has announced a dramatic U-turn, promising to cut the prices of its high-end handbags as the luxury leather brand issued its fourth profit warning in two years.

Jason Ader to get his own team on board at Bwin.Party

US activist investor Jason Ader has laid out plans to install four directors on the board at bookie Bwin.Party.

Wagon Wheels maker gets £15m boost

The UK’s second largest biscuit supplier has announced nearly £15m of investment in a bid to drive growth.

Co-operative Group posts record £2.5bn loss after 'disastrous year'

The Co-operative Group has reported a record annual loss of £2.5 billion after suffering the worst crisis in the organisation's 150-year history.

Companies upbeat as they hike ad budgets

Companies hiked their advertising budgets at the greatest rate in 14 years in the first three months of this year and they are bullish about the outlook in a boost for the Chancellor, George Osborne.

Tesco chief vows to stay on despite further fall in profits

Tesco's chief executive issued a defiant "I'm not going anywhere" message to shareholders yesterday after the supermarket giant reported its second year of falling profits.

James Moore: Hargreaves Lansdown at risk of overplaying its hand

Outlook Not all supermarkets are suffering. Take Hargreaves Lansdown (HL), which is on the crest of a wave. The difference, of course, is that it sells financial services through online shelves rather than groceries (mainly) in shops.

Chinese keep on buying from Burberry

The luxury brand Burberry defied fears of a spending slowdown in China yesterday as it revealed demand for its distinctive check-lined trench coats and leather bags continued to grow.

Ben Chu: So real pay is rising for the first time in years? Here's how to figure out who's really better off

Four morose men are drinking in a pub when Bill Gates walks in. "Cheer up lads," exclaims one of the men. "The average wealth of the five of us has just gone through the roof."

Bets on earlier rate rise after unemployment falls

A big fall in unemployment sent the pound up against the dollar yesterday and prompted traders to place bets on an earlier rise in interest rates from the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee.

Market Report: Sports Direct's rise makes it ripe for a fall - but when?

Sports Direct's stratospheric rise since going public makes it ripe for a fall, but Merrill Lynch doesn't think that will happen any time soon.

Banker who became hate figure after Irish crash cleared of fraud

Ireland's most unpopular banker was yesterday found not guilty of involvement in financial irregularities in the management of the institution he headed, Anglo-Irish Bank.

Tesco shareholders demanding Clarke's head don't realise times have changed

Outlook The City's wolves are baying for the blood of Philip Clarke in the wake of Tesco's full-year results. Small wonder: they're awful.


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