- Joe Miller
- Rebecca Marston
Last updated 1 April 2014Share
06:03Joe Miller, Business Reporter
Good morning. It's a busy business day, with reports on the privatisation of the Royal Mail and the Government's rural broadband programme. Later on we'll have the Office for National Statistics' latest labour productivity figures, which we will study keenly in light of recent economic growth.
06:03Rebecca Marston, Business reporter, BBC News
Morning from me, too. Yep, a busy day indeed. Lots on new regulation to come for the payday loans industry, so plenty to say on that. Stay with us and get in touch @bbcbusiness or email@example.com.
06:06 PAYDAY LOANSRadio 5 live
From today the Financial Conduct Authority takes over regulation of the consumer credit market from the Office of Fair Trading. It includes around 200 payday lenders. Martin Wheatley, the head of the FCA, tells Wake up to Money: "Our processes will probably force about a quarter of the firms out of the industry and that's a good thing as those are the ones that have poor practices."
06:17 US ECONOMY
While you were sleeping (or while we were, in any case), the head of the US Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen, said "extraordinary" measures to stimulate the American economy would be needed for some time. In a speech in Chicago, Ms Yellen underlined that unemployment was still a big challenge, citing case studies of three ordinary Americans who were struggling to find work.
06:30 PAYDAY LOANSRadio 5 live
The boss of the body that represents payday lenders, the Consumer Finance Association's Russell Hamblin-Boone, tells Wake up to Money more than half could go out of business. That's twice as many as the FCA estimates. He says the FCA is only looking at the impact of its own probe. "The industry is [also] subject to a market investigation by the Competition Commission and on top of that we're going to have a price control."
06:35 ROYAL FAILRadio 4
George Godber, the markets guest on Today, talks to Simon Jack about criticism of the government's Royal Mail selloff. "I was astounded... I thought it was significantly underpriced. In stock market terms, this was the London 2012 Olympic ticket moment, lots of people applied but very few got to go to the opening ceremony."
06:43 DIAPER RUSH
It's not often we get to report on nappies (or diapers, as our American cousins insist on calling them), but sales of the baby products have soared in Japan, as buyers rushed to stock up before the sales tax increase (up to 8% from 5%) on Tuesday. Some shops reportedly sold out even after imposing rations.
06:56 PAYDAY LOANSRadio 5 live
Russell Hamblin-Boone from the Consumer Finance Association is asked to respond to the heavy criticism of the industry. He says 4% of the population use payday loans. "With all the scrutiny the industry has been under for 18 months people are continuing to take out these loans and pay them back and not have a problem. If we continue to drive up standards this can only be good for business"
07:04 JAPANRadio 4
More on Japan's sales tax hike. The last time the country raised the rate, in 1997, it pushed the economy back into recession, as Simon Jack reminds us. "It was totally the opposite then," Dr Seijiro Takeshita of Mizuho International tells Today. "All statistics do show that there is a profound comeback that's taking place," he says. He adds that recent soft industrial output data was partially due to heavy snow, and not any deeper structural problems.
07:11 ROYAL FAILRadio 5 live
As the National Audit Office says the government sold Royal Mail off too cheaply, David Stubbs, postal economist at Trova Consulting, tells Wake Up to Money: "It's very difficult to see that anybody actually believes it was priced at 330p and that was right." He says he estimated the price a couple of years before the float and he got 580p - about where they are now.