Kamal Ahmed

Kamal Ahmed Business editor

Welcome to the Business Blog – my latest take on the major business stories and analysis of the facts behind the headlines

Irish clampdown on tax avoidance will be followed by the UK

  • 14 October 2014
  • From the section Business
Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan holding the 2015 budget

Today the Irish government announced something very significant. The closure of the notorious "Double Irish" tax loophole.

The reason it's important is not because it is changing Ireland's tax regime, which it is.

It is important because the double Irish is the method by which global companies reduce taxes on the businesses they run around the world.

And the Treasury is following developments closely and is poised to launch its own crackdown on "diverted profits", which is what the double Irish allows companies to do.

Google and Facebook have both been fingered for using the scheme - as have a number of pharmaceutical firms.

Read full article Irish clampdown on tax avoidance will be followed by the UK

Eurostar sale could be last privatisation before the general election

  • 13 October 2014
  • From the section Business
Eurostar

This morning, George Osborne officially started the process for the sale of the government's 40% stake in Eurostar.

Now, it might be a criticism too far to suggest that the Treasury is hunting down the back of the sofa to see what loose change it can find.

Read full article Eurostar sale could be last privatisation before the general election

Farewell payday lenders, welcome loan sharks?

  • 9 October 2014
  • From the section Business
pounds and coins

This morning, the screw that is being slowly tightened on the payday loan industry was given another couple of swift turns.

The Competition and Markets Authority, the regulator that took over from the Office of Fair Trading and the Competition Commission, has announced proposals to force payday loan companies to be more transparent about how they charge for short term credit.

Read full article Farewell payday lenders, welcome loan sharks?

Tesco: At last, some retail experience

  • 6 October 2014
  • From the section Business
Tesco sign

To what is likely to be at least a partial sigh of relief among investors, Tesco announced today two new members of its board.

One, at least, has retail experience (though of a most particular type).

Read full article Tesco: At last, some retail experience

Demis Hassabis - the artificial intelligence guru worth £400m to Google

  • 2 October 2014
  • From the section Business
Demis Hassabis

Chess-playing Londoner reveals his plans for computers "that think"

Two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of spending a few hours in the company of a man who, though not at the moment a household name, is likely to be one of the most important figures in the way the world of computer technology develops in the next 20 years.

Read full article Demis Hassabis - the artificial intelligence guru worth £400m to Google

Tesco, Sainsbury’s – the bad news just keeps coming

  • 1 October 2014
  • From the section Business
Tesco sign

Another morning, another slug of red ink on the stock market listings of Tesco and Sainsbury's. Both share prices are down as investors digest yet more bad news.

For Tesco, the mis-statement of its August profit forecast by as much as £250m just became a whole lot more serious.

Read full article Tesco, Sainsbury’s – the bad news just keeps coming

Wonga: The pain starts here

  • 30 September 2014
  • From the section Business
Wonga logo

Costs up, revenues flat, profits collapsing.

In most firms that would be a recipe for disaster with calls for the chief executive to go and serious questions being asked about the business.

Read full article Wonga: The pain starts here

Tesco was warned in 2010 about 'aggressive accounting'

  • 25 September 2014
  • From the section Business
Tesco sign

Talking to Tesco's most significant investors, it is becoming clear that the people who own Britain's biggest retailer will not be happy until the company fundamentally reassesses the way it operates.

They do not want Dave Lewis, the new chief executive, or Sir Richard Broadbent, the under-pressure chairman, to confine their investigation to the £250m profits overstatement - serious as that is.

Read full article Tesco was warned in 2010 about 'aggressive accounting'

Tesco investors put Sir Richard Broadbent in the frame

  • 23 September 2014
  • From the section Business
Tesco store front

Day two, and Tesco's share price is again drifting south, down almost 5% and now below £2 (a number the retailer hasn't seen since 2003).

The latest trading figures from Kantar show sales down another 4.5% in the 12 weeks to 14 September. It seems to be a race between trading figures and the share price as to which can fall the fastest.

Read full article Tesco investors put Sir Richard Broadbent in the frame

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About Kamal

Kamal joined the BBC after four and a half years as business editor of the Sunday Telegraph's award-winning team. He also helped launch the Telegraph's annual festival of business, the major conference for small and medium sized enterprises. Before that, Kamal worked at The Observer as head of news and earlier, as its political editor.

His love of journalism started at Leeds Student, Leeds University's student newspaper, where he first tasted life as a reporter in a basement office with no windows. Essential workplace furniture included half-drunk pints of beer with cigarettes stubbed out in them. In those days, you needed a strong constitution to be a volunteer hack.

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