8 January 2014 Last updated at 05:53

Business Live: Christmas trading plus headlines

    0600: Pia Gadkari Business reporter, BBC News

    Good morning and welcome. We're digesting the JP Morgan settlement with US regulators for charges relating to the Madoff scandal. Plus, we've got a trading update on the way from Waitrose this morning. And, we'll keep you up to speed with all the latest business headlines until 13:00. Stay with us.

    0600: Edwin Lane Business reporter, BBC News

    Morning all. A think tank this morning says spending more on the state pension is unaffordable, and the state pension age should rise faster. Get in touch if you have a view on this at bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk or via Twitter @bbcbusiness.

    PENSIONS 0608: Radio 5 live

    Gabriel Sahlgren wrote this morning's report from the Institute of Economic Affairs arguing that the government's pension plans are "unaffordable" and "irresponsible". He tells Wake Up to Money that people should not expect to now spend half of their lives in retirement. In the long-run, he says the state pension should be replaced by compulsory private pensions.

    JP MORGAN FINE 0613:
    JP Morgan Chase logo

    Yesterday JP Morgan announced it would pay a $1.7bn (£1bn) to victims of the Bernard Madoff fraud in a settlement with US regulators. In the last year JP Morgan has paid nearly $20bn in fines relating to the financial crisis, the "London whale" trading loss, and rigging London's inter-bank lending rate called Libor.

    SUPERMARKETS 0622: Radio 5 live

    It's been a mixed Christmas for retailers, particularly the supermarkets. Retail expert Teresa Wickham says the main players are trying to adapt to changing shopping habits. "People are buying the basics online, perhaps once a month, and then shopping more frequently, and are more concerned with value and cutting waste," she tells Wake Up to Money.

    CHINESE DEBT 0625: Radio 4

    Chinese authorities have racked up about $3.4tn in debt, according to the latest official audit. But the BBC's Linda Yueh says the off-balance sheet borrowing could become a problem. "If these infrastructure and spending products don't generate a return then there is an issue about how much debt local governments have quietly accumulated," she tells the Today programme.

    CHINESE DEBT 0628: Radio 4

    Miranda Carr, head of research at NSBO, says Chinese local governments have used the shadow banking system to borrow, which makes it hard to know exactly how much debt there is. The central government is now hoping to create a bond market for local governments, but this will take time. "You can't just have a fully-functioning bond market overnight," she says.

    JP MORGAN FINE 0636:

    Bernard Madoff banked with JP Morgan from 1986. His account received deposits and transfers worth $150bn, but JP Morgan never raised concerns with regulators about it. US prosecutors said "JP Morgan, as an institution, failed and failed miserably," to guard against money laundering.

    3D PRINTING 0644: BBC World News
    Rory Cellan-Jones

    Technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones is at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, reporting on the huge advances in 3D printing being showcased. There's even 3D printed chocolate. "Literally anything you can buy now you can make on a 3D printer - chess sets, keyrings, glasses frames - anything," says one exhibitor.

    JP MORGAN FINE 0648: Radio 4

    Jane Sydenham, investment director at Rathbones Investment Management says that despite the massive fines, JP Morgan chief executive Jamie Dimon does not appear at risk of losing his job. No individuals have been accused of wrongdoing in the case, and experts say criminal indictment of a bank can be dangerous because of the panic it can cause in the markets.

    3D PRINTING 0656:
    ChefJet sugar

    In fact there are two 3D food printers being unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, technology reporter Leo Kelion looks at the Chefjet, which can make intricate shapes out of sugar.

    SAINSBURY'S BOSS Via Twitter Simon Jack Business correspondent, BBC News

    tweets: "Is Justin King's STREAK in danger 35 consec quarters of growth at Sainsbury vulnerable to success of discounters Aldi/Lidl? Any Qs for him?"

    CHINESE DEBT 0700: Radio 4

    "If China were to have a systemic banking crisis - because we already know, despite capital controls, money moves across borders - it will have a much wider regional, if not global impact," says the BBC's Linda Yueh.

    DEBT 0704: BBC Breakfast

    Can debt ever be good? That's the question being asking on Breakfast this morning. The programme hears from David Galbraith, who says a £25,000 start-up loan was crucial to getting his hip flask business off the ground. "If i had not got the loan i would have been hamstrung, it would have slowed down my progress," he says.


    Waitrose has just reported its best Christmas season ever, saying that in the 12 days to 31 December, like-for-like sales were up 4.1%. The grocery chain had its biggest business day ever on 23 December, when it made £51m in sales. Waitrose said £22,000 worth of shopping went through the checkouts every minute that day.


    And Sainsbury's has also just reported a 0.2% rise in like-for-like sales, excluding fuel, for the quarter covering the Christmas period. That's better than expected by many analysts, who were worried it would be vulnerable to cheaper rivals like Lidl and Aldi.

    HOUSEBUILDERS Via Twitter Robert Peston Business editor

    tweets: "More evidence of housing market recovery/boom: housebuilder Persimmon's annual revenues rise 21% to £2.1bn"


    Justin King, Sainsbury's chief executive, tells Steph McGovern it's been a good Christmas for the supermarket, despite slow sales growth in the last quarter. He said 28 million people shopped with Sainsbury's in Christmas week, making up for a relatively poor October and November.

    FORD BOSS 0720:
    Alan Mulally standing next a Ford car

    Alan Mulally, chief executive of Ford, says he is not leaving the US carmaker to become the boss of Microsoft, following reports that he had been shortlisted as a possible candidate for the post. Microsoft's current boss, Steve Ballmer, announced over the summer that he would leave within a year.


    "Small shops are really where its at at the moment," says Sainsbury's boss Justin King. The supermarket's chain of smaller convenience stores is growing at a rate of 18%.


    We've just had a profit warning from Mothercare. "Full-year profit expectations are now below the current range of market forecasts," the company said. It said currency deflation and a weak economy hit some of its key international markets, while in the UK, weaker footfall and making customers pay for delivery of online purchases has hit sales.


    Co-op Food has also released some Christmas trading numbers. It said it saw like-for-like sales rise 1% in the last three months. It said the growth was fuelled by the group's convenience stores.

    MAJESTIC WINE Via Twitter Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    tweets: "Majestic Wine: UK Christmas trading +5.9%, like-for-like +2.8%, strong growth in wines >£20 per bottle"

    CHINA GAME BAN 0742:
    Consumers standing next to Nintendo wii console

    Nintendo shares have had a good day on the markets, surging 11% on the Tokyo Stock Exchange because China withdrew a ban on foreign game consoles on Tuesday. The government said foreign firms can make consoles in the recently-launched Shanghai free trade zone and sell them across the country.

    GOOD DEBT 0800: Radio 5 live

    Debt can be a good thing, 5 live's Adam Parsons reports. Stephen Pegge from Lloyds Banking Group tells him that borrowing is an important part of running a business. About half of small and medium-sized businesses are borrowing at any one time.

    COINYE WEST 0808:

    A virtual currency inspired by rapper Kanye West has been launched. CoinyeCoin was originally called "Coinye West" before a legal complaint from the hip hop star, who has nothing to do with it.

    SAINSBURY'S CHRISTMAS TRADING Via Twitter Simon Jack Business correspondent, BBC News

    tweets: "Co-op grocery stores beat Sainsbury with 1% like for like sales growth in Q4. Seems Rev Flowers didn't put us off their food."

    HOUSE PRICES 0817:

    UK house prices fell unexpectedly by 0.6% in December, according to figures just released by the Halifax. That's the first month-on-month fall in the market since the beginning of 2013.

    LISTEN AGAIN 0827: Radio 4

    Listen again to this morning's business news on the Today programme to hear about the looming debt crisis in China, the threat of deflation in the eurozone and pensions reform. Download the podcast now.

    MOTHERCARE WARNING Via Twitter Simon Jack Business correspondent, BBC News

    tweets: "mothercare shares down 17% on profit warning"


    European markets have fallen so far this morning. The FTSE 100 is down 0.2%, while both the Dax in Frankfurt and the Cac 40 in Paris are down 0.1%. Earlier the Nikkei in Tokyo had a good day, closing up nearly 2% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended 1.3% higher.

    HOUSE PRICES 0841:

    Despite falling slightly in December, the broader trend in UK house prices has been unmistakably upwards, according to the Halifax. Prices rose 7.5% in 2013, the lender said. The average price of a house is now £173,467.

    MOTHERCARE Via Twitter Adam Parsons Business Correspondent

    tweets: "Mothercare share price collapsing - down 31%"

    Greece's Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras (R) and Deputy Finance Minister Christos Staikouras

    Greece assumes presidency of the EU today, a role it will keep until European elections in May. It presides over a busy time - tackling youth unemployment, making credit available to small and medium-sized businesses, improving governance and finalising the "banking union" are already earmarked as priorities.

    JP MORGAN FINE 0902:

    Bloomberg reports that JP Morgan's final bill for claims relating to Bernie Madoff actually adds up to about $2.6bn (£1.6bn) - more than the $1.7bn initially reported - because JP Morgan must also pay out $350m in a related case with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and $543m for private claims.

    CHRISTMAS TRADING 0922: Via Blog Robert Peston Business editor

    blogs on Christmas retail: "My hunch is that this Christmas will have been good for Tesco... Which is not to say that the headline numbers will look great. There is bound to have been a fall in like-for-like or underlying sales, and so the simple direct comparison with Sainsbury will not flatter Tesco. But that disguises Tesco's strengths - especially in online."

    EMERGING MARKETS 0929: Radio 4

    Should investors steer clear of emerging markets? That's what many investment banks are saying. But emerging market economist Jerome Booth tells the Today programme the banks are "categorically wrong". "There is risk everywhere," he says, but the difference is investment advisers take notice of risks in developing countries, but not in developed economies.


    The FTSE 100 is still down 0.2% this morning, while both the Dax in Frankfurt and the Cac 40 in Paris have recovered somewhat after early falls. The Dax is now back where it started while the Cac 40 is up 0.1%. Earlier the Nikkei in Tokyo closed up nearly 2% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended 1.3% higher.

    LENDING Via Twitter Ben Thompson Business correspondent, BBC News Channel

    tweets: "Lenders expect a 'significant increase in availability of mortgages and business loans' in first quarter of 2014, acc to @bankofengland"

    Antonio sharpening a knife

    Here's an interesting read about Spain's vanishing knife sharpeners. The BBC's Tom Burridge tracks down a couple of them and discovers that although sharpening knives is a dying profession, restaurants and tradespeople still need the service and it's become a stable - if low - source of income during the financial crisis.

    LISTEN AGAIN 1002: World Service

    Today's Business Daily speaks to the high priest of randomness, Nassim Nicholas Taleb on the bird that made him famous - the Black Swan. And they're in Spain for the first of our series on the world's vanishing professions. Plus, why having big families can make people less likely to become involved in health programmes. Listen to the podcast here.

    CHEAPER CREDIT Via Twitter Robert Peston Business editor

    tweets: "More and cheaper credit available for households and businesses, says Bank of England (pdf)"

    L'OREAL 1026:

    French cosmetics maker L'Oreal has decided to pull its Garnier products out of China, the Financial Times is reporting. Instead, it will focus on its L'Oreal Paris and Maybelline New York lines. Last week, Revlon said it would scale back operations in China too.


    Euro area unemployment stays at 12.1% in November, for the eighth consecutive month, according to Eurostat, the European statistics agency.


    The eurozone unemployment figures reveal great disparity between the member countries, with low rates in Germany and Austria at around 5%, but joblessness in countries such as Greece and Spain soaring, with about one in four out of work.

    HOUSE PRICES Via Twitter Simon Gompertz Personal finance correspondent, BBC News

    tweets: "51% of people say this year will be a good time to sell a home, say the Halifax"

    'FATCAT' PAY 1119:

    The Guardian reports that the average boss of a FTSE 100 company has earned £27,000 already in 2014 - the same as the average worker in the UK earns in a whole year. It cites a report from the High Pay Centre, which says the typical FTSE 100 chief executive gets paid £1,100 an hour, making £4.3m a year.

    DOMINO'S 1131:

    Pizza delivery firm Domino's has also had a good Christmas. It said its 670 UK stores saw sales up by nearly 11% in the three months to the end of December. That is better than many analysts expected.


    European markets are down. The FTSE 100 is now 0.4% lower, while both the Dax in Frankfurt and the Cac 40 in Paris are down 0.1%. Earlier the Nikkei in Tokyo closed up nearly 2%. Sainsbury's is among the biggest losers on the FTSE, after it reported slower sales growth.

    EURO UNEMPLOYMENT Via Twitter Ben Thompson Business correspondent, BBC News Channel

    tweets: "More worrying youth unemployment figures from the Eurozone this morning. Highest in Spain (57.7%), Greece (54.8%) & Croatia (49.7%) @BBCNews"

    ENERGY BILLS 1209:

    Big Six energy supplier Npower has announced cuts to its energy bills. It said the average dual fuel bill will fall by £50 this year, after it raised prices in December.

    CHEVRON CONTRACT Via Twitter Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    tweets: "Big Chevron drilling contract for Aberdeen firm"

    ENERGY BILLS 1225:

    Npower is the last of the big six to announce a price cut as a result of the government's rollback of green levies. But the average 2.6% cut follows an average increase in bills of 10.4% in December.

    BEDS FOR GEEKS 1241:
    Smart bed test

    How can a bed give you a better night's sleep and even stop your partner snoring? Technology reporter Dave Lee tries out the £4,800 "superbed" launched at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.


    Some interesting investment advice to mull over lunch. The Times has created a list of the worst investments of the last decade. They find it doesn't pay off to invest hastily.


    That's it from us on the Business Live page today, but we will be back tomorrow from 06:00 with more business news headlines.


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