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  1. Welcome to the new-look Business Live page
  2. The morning's main business programmes are available on the Live Coverage tab
  3. UK unemployment figures show fall
  4. China inflation at near five-year low

Live Reporting

By Edwin Lane and Matthew West

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Post update

    Edwin Lane

    Business reporter, BBC News

    That's it for another day on the Business Live page. We'll be back bright and early at 06:00 tomorrow morning. In the meantime you can keep up with the rest of the day's business news on the BBC News website.


    The second largest bank in the US, Bank of America, has reported a second quarter loss of $70m (£44m), compared with a profit of $2.2bn a year earlier, as a result of a huge mortgage settlement with the US government. The bank agreed to pay a record $16.65bn in August to settle claims that it misled investors into buying mortgage bonds that went bad.


    The Prime Minister David Cameron has answered a question on the sale of steel works by Tata Steel at Prime Minister's Questions. He says he wants to see a "good future for steel in Scunthorpe" - one of the locations affected, and said the government was in touch with Tata and Klesch Group - the proposed buyer.


    More than 1.2 million people have switched bank accounts since new rules designed to boost competition between current account providers were introduced last year. That's a 22% increase on a year earlier. Halifax and Santander attracted the most net new accounts in the first quarter of this year according to data released by the Payments Council.

  5. Via Blog


    Linda Yueh

    Chief business correspondent

    blogs: "Price rises are as weak as during the global recession. It doesn't mean that we are returning to recession, but it raises the danger of deflation once again."


    Women in workplace

    Should employers pay for women to freeze their eggs? "There's a danger that companies give a signal - or even promote the idea - that a women needs to postpone having children in order to succeed in the workplace," says Daisy Sands, head of policy at the Fawcett Society, a group that campaigns for equality for women. Read Emily Young's piece here.


    Leading UK computer chip maker CSR is being bought by US firm Qualcomm. The deal is expected to be worth $2.5bn (£1.6bn). Shares in CSR rose 30% after it was announced.

  8. Via Email


    The GMB union says it and other unions want an "urgent meeting" with Tata Steel over the proposed sale of part of its UK business. "The unions have been treated with contempt in this process as the level of consultation that we would expect ahead of such a major strategic announcement has not taken place," a statement reads.


    India's Tata Steel is selling its "Long Products" division, employing nearly 6,000 people in the UK across sites in Scunthorpe, Teesside, Dalzell and Clydebridge. The prospective buyer is an outfit called Klesch Group. The BBC's John Moylan says there's "huge uncertainty" around the security of the jobs.


    Little reaction on the financial markets to this morning's unemployment figures.

    • The FTSE 100 is still down about 1%, with pharmaceuticals firm Shire 26% lower after doubts were cast over a planned merger.
    • Germany's Dax and France's Cac 40 are both down about 0.6%.
    • The pound has recovered a bit, up 0.16% at $1.593.

    FTSE share graph

    "Challenger" bank Aldermore has cancelled plans to float on the London Stock Exchange. The bank blamed the "recent deterioration of global equity markets" It had planned to sell £300m worth of shares on Thursday to institutional investors before a full listing on Friday. The FTSE 100 has tumbled nearly 600 points since the end of August.


    U2 with Apple CEO Tim Cook

    The lead singer of behemoth rock group U2 has apologised for upsetting people by foisting the band's latest album on users of Apple's iTunes service. Bono blamed: "A drop of megalomania, a twitch of generosity, a dash of self-promotion" for the free album release that some Apple customers claimed amounted to malware.


    Apple has released a statement this morning about its employee fertility service. The company says it "cares deeply" about its employees and their families, and is always looking at "new ways its health programs can meet their needs". Apple adds its "cryopreservation and egg storage" services are part of its "extensive support for infertility treatments".


    the Facebook logo

    In a country that is only really just getting used to paternity leave, we're not quite sure how this particular workplace innovation will be viewed. Facebook has since the start of the year been offering an egg freezing service to female staff in the US, it has emerged. And it is reported today that Apple is to follow suit in 2015. We hope staff check the T&Cs thoroughly first.

  15. Via Email


    Howard Archer, chief UK and European economist at IHS Global Insight

    writes: " We expect unemployment to continue to trend downward over the coming months, but likely at a gradually slowing rate to stand at 5.9% at the end of 2014 and 5.6% at the end of 2016. Slightly slowing growth, an expanding labour pool and improving productivity are expected to cause the fall in unemployment to moderate."

  16. WAGES

    The ONS data also shows average pay including bonuses was 0.7% higher in August than a year earlier - still well below the declining rate of inflation, which fell to 1.2% in September. Average wages are still not rising as fast as the Bank of England would like, so the chances of an interest rate rise this side of the election are receding.

  17. Via Twitter


    Shadow work and pensions secretary Rachel Reeves

    tweets: "Today's jobs figures show welcome fall in unemployment but wages still well behind inflation. The pay squeeze on working people continues."


    BBC News Channel

    Ester McVey

    Ester McVey, employment minister, tells the BBC New Channel there are "a host of job opportunities out there". She adds "We know we've had to build the country back up but the UK economy is the fastest economy in the G7... We're in it together and we're moving in the right direction."

  19. Via Twitter


    Robert Peston

    Economics editor

    tweets: "The annual fall in unemployment to 1.97m is largest on record. But rate of decline is slowing"

  20. Via Twitter


    Danny Alexander, chief secretary to the Treasury

    tweets: "Another record breaking fall in unemployment. Every job created is another step towards a stronger economy and a fairer society @LibDemPress"

  21. BreakingBreaking News


    Unemployment in the three months to August fell to 1.97 million for the first time in five years, taking the unemployment rate down to 6%, official figures show.

  22. INTEL

    BBC News Channel

    News Channel

    Intel's managing director in northern Europe Patrick Bliemer is on the BBC News Channel. He says "the internet of things", "smart cities" and "wearable technology" are the areas where the company plans to invest heavily as the PC market wanes.

  23. Via Blog


    Robert Peston

    Economics editor

    Our resident Arsenal fan blogs on the cost of football tickets: "So why on Earth do I - and thousands of others - pay all this money for the ritual pain of being humiliated by Chelsea, season after grinding season? Well I don't feel as though I have a choice."


    Fitch ratings agency has downgraded its outlook for France's credit rating to negative warning the county's debt to GDP ratio could peak at 99.7% in 2017. The eurozone's second-largest economy currently has the second-highest credit rating of AA+ but possibly not for much longer.


    World Service

    The BBC World Service's Business Matters programme has been debating misogyny and corruption in the gaming industry today - a phenomenon that has become known as "gamergate". US games developer Brianna Wu tells the programme about the death threats she's received after speaking out and talks about the internet trolls who have driven several women from the industry.



    Japanese carmaker Toyota is recalling 1.75 million vehicles worldwide because of a faulty brake installation, it has said today. It is the second recall in as many months. Toyota recalled 690,000 Tacoma pickup trucks in the US because of a potential vulnerability in the vehicles' suspension systems.


    Markets in Europe have opened lower.

    • The FTSE 100 is down 0.7% with Shire's big fall helping to drag the market down.
    • The Dax in Frankfurt and the Cac 40 in Paris are both down too, falling 0.1% and 0.3% respectively.
    • Overnight the Asian markets were up despite some more worrying inflation data out of China.

    Shire share graph

    have tanked this morning on the news that US drug firm AbbVie is considering pulling out of its £32bn takeover of the UK pharmaceutical firm. They're down 28% to £37.25 from Tuesday's closing price of £51.31.

  29. Via Twitter


    The news US drug firm AbbVie is reconsidering its £32bn takeover of UK rival Shire following new tax rules announced by the US Treasury could hurt Shire significantly it appears. City grandee David Buik tweets: "Early print of pre market trading in SHIRE - small at £40.00!! - down 22%" Yesterday Shire's shares closed at £51.31.


    Radio 5 live

    The Financial Conduct Authority is launching a campaign to make people more aware of financial scams from cold-callers. Tracy McDermott from the FCA tells Radio 5 live reputable financial firms simply don't use cold calling, so if you get a call with an offer that sounds too good to be true, put the phone down.



    Kidderminster sells the most expensive half-time pie in English football - a hefty £4.50. Stats lovers should take a look at BBC Sport's Price of Football study for more interesting nuggets.

  32. Via Twitter


    Adam Parsons

    Business Correspondent

    tweets: "Shire says AbbVie would have to pay $1.6bn break fee if it backs out of merger deal"


    BG Group - not to be confused with British Gas, from which it was spun off in the 1980s - has appointed Statoil's chief executive Helge Lund as its new chief executive from March 2015. He will be paid a salary of £1.5m. But it's the £480,000 relocation package that's attracting some attention this morning. Mr Lund is only moving from Norway to the UK, surely it can't cost that much to move here, can it?


    World Service

    Will Converse succeed in its legal action to protect its brand? "It is notoriously difficult to win a trademark case in the fashion context," Polk Wagner, professor at University of Pennsylvania Law School tells BBC World Service's Newsday programme. "It's certainly not a slam dunk on the part of the plaintiffs."



    Converse's Chuck Taylor basketball shoes have been around since 1917, and the company says it's sold a billion pairs worldwide since then. But its popularity has spawned plenty of look-a-likes and now the company looks like it has lost patience and is suing 31 companies over it.


    Radio 5 live

    "Football is not just another business," says Kevin Miles from the Football Supporters' Federation, talking about the escalating cost of tickets on Radio 5 live. "Long-term fans are asked to choose between their loyalty to their club and their financial welfare. Working class people are being priced out. It's losing its social inclusion."


    Balfour Beatty's five-month search for a new chief executive has come to an end. It has announced Leo Quinn as the new boss - he joins from QinetiQ. It follows the departure of Andrew McNaughton in May following the engineering and construction firm's second profit warning in six months. Mr Quinn began his career at Balfour Beatty in 1979 as a civil engineer.


    Could the government be lining up a change in the inheritance tax threshold? It certainly appears that way. Prime Minister David Cameron has re-stated his ambition to raise the threshold at which people pay the tax from £325,000 to allow people to leave more to their children. Speaking at an Age UK conference in London, Mr Cameron said the 40% tax should only be paid by the very wealthy.


    The new Google Glass

    How often do you check the internet on your phone during the day? If you feel it's an unhealthy number of times, you might want to avoid buying any Google eyewear for the time being. According to the Daily Telegraph, scientists have treated a man for internet addiction, believed to be the first case of its kind and caused by wearing Google Glass. Yikes!

  40. CHINA

    Speaking of China, it has reported that its inflation rate is down to a near five-year low. Prices are growing at a rate of just 1.6% a year according to official figures, the slowest rate since January 2010. That's further evidence of a slowdown in the world's second-biggest economy, analysts say.


    BBC Radio 4

    Chip-maker Intel has announced rising profits on the back of better sales of personal computers. Patrick Bliemer, Intel's managing director, tells the Today programme that reports of the death of the PC have been greatly exaggerated . "The PC has been declared dead many times. I think it is the ultimate Darwinian device and it has reinvented itself again," he says.


    BBC World News

    Li Keqiang

    China's Premier Li Keqiang is in Italy in the latest stop on a world tour to drum up trade. He signed 50 trade deals in Russia last week. So far Italy has scored 10, says World Business Report. China already has lots of assets in Europe. Last year alone it spent $7.5bn, including stakes in Fiat and energy firm Eni in Italy.


    The average worker in the UK is £5,000 worse off than they were before the financial crisis. That's according to research from Prof Paul Gregg of Bath University's Institute for Policy Research. The report, seen by the Guardian, says because real term wages have fallen since 2008, average wages are 20% lower than where they should be.


    UK unemployment figures are out at 09:30 this morning. The number of people out of work is expected to fall again - last month it stood at just over two million - a rate of 6.2%. While that can only be good news, the main area of focus is whether people's wages are growing. Last month they grew at their slowest pace on record.


    Radio 5 live

    Wake Up to Money looks at the story of AbbVie, the US pharmaceutical company that says it's rethinking plans to take over UK firm Shire, because US law changes mean it might not be able to us the merger as an excuse to move out of the US and get the tax advantages. Laura Lambie from Investec Wealth and Investment says there have already been 14 similar deals, with US companies moving to get favourable tax rates.

  46. Via Twitter


    Linda Yueh

    Chief business correspondent

    tweets: "Inflation at 5 year lows for China at 1.6% & India: main gauge of inflation WPI at 2.38% & UK too at 1.2% as well as Euro Zone at just 0.3%."


    Radio 5 live

    Justin King, former Sainsbury's boss and Manchester United fan, tells Wake Up to Money he is surprised football clubs don't use their TV revenue money to keep ticket costs lower. He says charging so much money on match days is "a dangerous game", and clubs need to make sure kids can afford to go to games to ensure they keep attracting fans in the long term.



    The average price of the cheapest tickets across English football has risen at almost twice the rate of the cost of living since 2011, a BBC investigation has found. Prices have increased 13% since 2011, compared to a 6.8% rise in the cost of living. Arsenal has the most expensive ticket at a whopping £97.

  49. Post update

    Edwin Lane

    Business reporter, BBC News

    And it's good morning from me. We'll be talking about the rising cost of football tickets too. Get in touch with us at or tweet us @BBCBusiness.

  50. Post update

    Matthew West

    Business reporter

    Morning folks. So Germany has cut its economic growth forecast for this year from 1.8% to 1.2%, a move hardly likely to reassure investors that the eurozone isn't heading for its third crisis, Inflation in China has fallen near to a 5-year low and Converse is suing everyone it can find for copying is shoe design (surprised it took them so long? Us too). We have unemployment data later and more public servants go out on strike today too. So lots to get into.