The battle for readers and viewers

  • 25 February 2020
  • From the section Scotland

If you haven't yet been "engaged in a key vertical", brace yourself.

The Daily Record stable of newspapers, which is Britain's biggest, currently provide access to online content for free, are about to demand your data.

That includes the Mirror, Express, their weekly partners including the Sunday Mail and many more local titles.

According to Jim Mullen, the Glaswegian who has led publisher Reach plc since last August, this "will enable us to better personalise our offering and introduce customers to new products and services".

It's to get "a better understanding of their behaviour and interests".

Read full article The battle for readers and viewers

The Brexit trade-off with the economy is under way

  • 21 February 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image copyright Getty Images

The history books will record 31 January as the day Britain exited the European Union.

But historians should give at least as much status to 19 February - the day the Brexit rubber hit the road.

Read full article The Brexit trade-off with the economy is under way

RBS and NatWest: Brand new

  • 15 February 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image copyright Getty Images

Brands are symbols, so there's a symbolism to the change of name at Royal Bank of Scotland Group. The brand remains above the remaining branches in Scotland. Other customers will only see the change in the small print of their bank statements and loan agreements.

This change has been some time coming. It looks as if it was left for Alison Rose to deploy as a signal of a new regime and a new chapter.

Read full article RBS and NatWest: Brand new

Scottish government: No extra cash for budget deals

  • 12 February 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image copyright PA Media
Image caption Public finance minister Kate Forbes unveiled the Scottish governments spending pledges for the next financial year

The sofa of Scottish government budgeting has been thoroughly rifled. All possible hiding places for stashes of cash, for use in a potential budget deal with opposition MSPs, have been cleaned out.

There's nothing stuffed down the back, insists stand-in finance secretary Kate Forbes. "Every available penny is on the face of the budget." No, this is not like previous years, she tells a sceptical Tory, Murdo Fraser.

Read full article Scottish government: No extra cash for budget deals

Unpicking the Scottish budget

Image copyright Getty Images

The draft budget now being road-tested at Holyrood was a "wellbeing" budget.

It was progressive and inclusive. It was for growth, and a greener Scotland.

Read full article Unpicking the Scottish budget

A twist in the familiar tale of cuts

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Kate Forbes, watched by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, became the first woman to present a budget at Holyrood or Westminster

At last, a budget that wasn't dominated by austerity. It's not that the impact of the 10-year squeeze has gone away. But the draft Holyrood budget was more about a positive, though modest, range of choices than about the familiar tale of cuts.

Amid the numbers issued with Thursday's draft budget for Holyrood was an assessment of the journey from 2010, as Conservative chancellors sought to "consolidate" the budget, and get the deficit down.

Read full article A twist in the familiar tale of cuts

Scotland set for a budget, but not as we know it

  • 6 February 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image caption Finance minister Kate Forbes will step in to outline the Scottish spending plans

It's a budget, but not as we know it. Kate Forbes, a late replacement for Derek Mackay, will get to her feet on Thursday afternoon, with a lot of pencilling, and the hope of ink next month.

The finance minister doesn't know what size the Holyrood block grant will be for the start of April. And while forecasting income tax always requires a bit of guesswork, this time will involve more peering into the cloudy crystal ball than usual.

Read full article Scotland set for a budget, but not as we know it

Brexit: The difficult bit starts now

  • 31 January 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image copyright EPA

Why does Brexit happen at 11pm? Simple. It's a concession to European Union standard - it's midnight in Brussels, not in Britain.

It may be the first of many.

Read full article Brexit: The difficult bit starts now

Why Amazon boss Jeff Bezos is feeling the chill in India

  • 15 January 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The Confederation of All India Traders protested against Jeff Bezos' visit

If it feels like Scottish retail has been through a bleak midwinter of stalling and falling sales, much of the chill has come from online e-commerce.

Along with the Scottish Retail Consortium figures, the fashion retailer Quiz reported another grim set of figures on Wednesday morning. Black Friday stood up OK, it said, but Christmas saw a 7% dip.

Read full article Why Amazon boss Jeff Bezos is feeling the chill in India

Scotland's seas take centre stage

  • 9 January 2020
  • From the section Scotland
Image copyright PA Media
Image caption The Loony Dook takes place in the Firth of Forth on New Year's Day

The year began with a controversy. How much should the public have to pay to do something really daft, which would otherwise be free?

On the first day of the year, hundreds of hardy souls dive into the chilly waters of the Forth of Forth as part of the annual Loony Dook.

Read full article Scotland's seas take centre stage