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Summary

  1. Next shares fall 15% on negative outlook
  2. Oil prices fall for third straight day on oversupply fears
  3. US food business McCormick says it may increase its bid for UK's Premier Foods.

Live Reporting

By Mantej Deol

All times stated are UK

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  1. Playboy up for sale

    Hugh hefner at playboy mansion

    Playboy is looking for a buyer for its magazine, licensing business and the Playboy mansion.

    It's thought the company could be valued at more than $500m.

    Hugh Hefner started the magazine in 1953, but in February 2016 it stopped publishing nude photos of women, saying they had become outdated due to the plethora of free pornography on the Internet. 

    Circulation has dropped from 5.6m in 1975 to under a million in recent years. 

    It is believed Investment bank Moelis & Co is advising Playboy on the sale. 

  2. Ringo Starr's childhood home sold for £70,000

    Ringo starr and family house

    The Victorian terraced house in Liverpool where Ringo Starr lived as a child has sold for £70,000 at auction. 

    The two bedroom property at 10 Admiral Grove in Toxteth was where the former Beatle lived as a small child and until he was 21.

    There were some restrictions on the sale -- the new owners are barred from turning the property into a tourist attraction or a museum. 

  3. Wall St close

    New York Stock Exchange

    Stocks in the US finished mostly higher after the oil market strengthened in response to news of lower US drilling activity.

    The Dow Jones closed up 13.69 points to 17,516.28.

    The S&P 500 lost 0.71 points to 2,036.

    And the Nasdaq added 4.64 points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,773.51.

    US markets will be closed tomorrow for Good Friday but will re open on Monday 28 March.

  4. US road mileage hits record for January

    US road travel rose by 2% in January compared with the same month last year - a new record, reports Reuters.

    Lower petrol prices and mild weather boosted road travel, government data showed on Thursday. 

    Motorists logged 240.7bn miles in January, according to the US Department of Transportation.

  5. Developing spend most on green energy

    BBC World Service reports

    BBC World Service

    The UN says a record amount was spent on renewable energy in 2015 - and for the first time ever, the majority of the investment came from developing nations.

    Their spending went up by 19%, while in developed countries it fell by 8%. The UN study says almost $300bn was put into green energy last year, particularly solar and wind power - with India and China leading the way. 

    That's more than double the amount spent on coal and gas-fired power generation plants.  

  6. Co-op exec loses employment claim

    Co-op membership card

    A former senior executive at the Co-operative Group has lost her £5m claim for unfair dismissal from the group. 

    Kath Harmeston, who had worked at the company as a procurement director since 2014,  said her reputation was ruined and that she was dismissed after she exposed wrongdoing at the group.

    But the Co-op fought the claim. The group's chief executive, Richard Pennycook, told the Employment Tribunal in Manchester that Ms Harmeston was dismissed over "performance issues" not any alleged whistleblowing.    

  7. Land Registry privatisation plans

    For sale signs

    The Government has published plans to privatise the Land Registry, which is part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, and registers ownership of properties in England and Wales.

    Land Registry employs around 4,500 people and union leaders have criticised the move saying releasing the proposals late in the day before the Easter parliamentary break was 'utterly disgraceful.'

    The coalition government tried to privatise the 150-year-old agency two years ago but a campaign was mounted to keep it under public ownership.

    It's thought the sale could raise £1.2bn for the Treasury.

  8. No change at SAP

    German software giant SAP has extended the contracts of its top executive team until 2021, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters.

    This dispels any doubts about the future of the company's chief executive, Bill McDermott, who lost his sight in one eye after a fall during a holiday last July.

    His accident led to speculation in some German media over whether he was fit to continue as chief executive and would be replaced. 

    Bill McDermott, CEO SAP
  9. Gordon Corera

    Security correspondent, BBC News

    Eye on screens

    Gordon Corera

    Security correspondent, BBC News

    A group of six large US tech firms submit new written evidence on the UK's Investigatory Powers Bill.

    Read more
    next
  10. Would Brexit add £500m to energy bills?

    By Anthony Reuben

    Reality Check

    Amber Rudd saying: They've analysed that [Brexit] risk and said £500m at least

    The Claim: The UK leaving the EU would add £500m a year to UK energy bills.

    Reality Check verdict: There is considerable uncertainty about the figure and much of the effect could be avoided by staying in the Internal Energy Market.

    Read the full Reality Check here.

  11. FTSE close

    London stock exchange

    The London Stock Market has closed for the week. Traders and investors have a four day break for Easter and they will return to their desks on Tuesday 29 March.

    The FTSE 100 close down almost 93 points, or 1.49%, to end the week at 6106.48.

    A decline in commodities prices put pressure on mining companies and oil producers.  

    Biggest riser was Paddy Power Betfair, whose Chief operating officer, Andy McCue, is to leave the company. Shares rose 1.9% in early trading but ended the day 0.59% up.

    Biggest loser of the day was Next, one of Britain's biggest fashion retailers, which announced its annual results and at the same time warned that 2016 was set to be its toughest year since the global financial crisis. That sent its share price tumbling. It closed down 15.09% to 5655p.

    Oil prices still worrying investors. Brent crude fell 1.6% and was trading at $40.06 a barrel.

  12. Third time lucky?

    basket of food stuff

    US spice company, McCormick, says it may well increase its takeover offer for Britain's Premier Foods after Japanese instant noodle maker, NissinFoods, bought a 17% stake in the target.

    Premier, the parent company of a host of familiar brands including Mr Kipling cakes and Bisto gravy, has twice rejected approaches from the US firm saying it undervalued the company.

    McCormick say they may up the offer if they were allowed to look at the company's finances including a review of its pensions documentation, current trading and material contracts. 

    McCormick now has until April 20 to make a firm offer for Premier under British takeover rules.

  13. Concerns raised over source of 'cheap coal'

    Video content

    Video caption: Dennis Skinner says 'cheap coal produced by child slave labour' being imported in to UK

    The government has been accused of importing "cheap coal" in to the UK from Columbia that has been produced by "child-slave labour", by Labour MP Dennis Skinner.

  14. More on VW emisions deadline in the US

    German car maker, Volkeswagen, has been given an extension to its 24 March deadline to come up with a plan to fix its diesels cars which are affected by the emissions cheating scandal.

    The US authorities have given VW till 21 April to come up with a plan to fix the problem.

  15. VW fails to reach a deal with US to fix emissions problem

    Broken VW logo

    Volkeswagen, the German car maker caught up in an emissions cheating scandal with its diesel cars, has failed to reach a deal with the US authorities on how to fix the problem which has affected 580,000 cars in the US. 

    VW had asked the American Environmental Protection Agency for an extension to a 24 March deadline by which it had to find a solution to fix the diesel engines, to bring emissions within the legal limits.

    Failure to comply could see the company banned from selling its 2016 models.

  16. Bombardier bailout ?

    Bombardier plane

    Struggling Canadian planemaker Bombardier has asked the government for $1bn in federal aid after problems selling its CSeries planes.

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he is looking "very carefully" at the request and that any decision to invest must be the right one for the authorities and the aerospace industry.