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Summary

  1. FTSE 100 closes down as sterling trades lower
  2. WTO rules against Boeing over US state subsidies
  3. Financial watchdog to probe Sports Direct
  4. JD Sports buys Go Outdoors

Live Reporting

By Karen Hoggan

All times stated are UK

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  1. Good night

    That's it from us tonight. Join us from 6am sharp when we''ll be reporting on the government's plans to crack down on corporate governance as well as a trading update from Alton Towers owner Merlin. 

  2. Profit taking blamed

    Analysts have blamed profit taking for Wall Street's drop today, which ends a four-day winning streak. 

    "This is basically profit taking. We've been high for a lot of days, so I think it is just a little bit of a pause," says Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial.

  3. Wall Street sees worst performance in a month

    Amazon wasn't the only losing stock. All three of the major Wall Street indexes have fallen today, marking their worst performance in almost a month.

    The Dow Jones industrial average fell 54.24 points, or 0.28%, to 19,097.9, the S&P 500 lost 11.63 points, or 0.53%, to 2,201.72 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 30.11 points, or 0.56%, to 5,368.81.  

  4. Amazon falls on Cyber Monday

    Amazon warehouse

    As US stocks end trading, the mighty Amazon is one of the biggest losers on the Nasdaq. 

    Shares in the online giant have dropped 1.8% despite reports suggesting Cyber Monday will have seen total sales hit a fresh record of a hefty $3.4bn.

  5. Oil prices rise on hope of output cuts

    Oil prices rose by more than 2% on Monday, after falling by as much as 2%, as the market reacted to the shaky prospect of major producers being able to agree output cuts at a meeting on Wednesday. 

    US West Texas Intermediate crude futures settled up $1.02, or 2.21% at $47.08 a barrel. Brent crude rose $1 or 2.12% to $48.24 a barrel. 

    Analysts expect prices to remain volatile until OPEC's meeting on Wednesday when it should become clear whether OPEC and non-OPEC producers can agree on cuts in output to tackle global oversupply.

    Quote Message:
  6. India tries to get tax dodgers to come clean

    BBC World Service

    Demonstrators against rupee withdrawal

    The Indian government has introduced plans to tweak tax laws to provide an incentive for tax dodgers to come clean, hoping the offer will bring a huge amount of money back into the economy, reports BBC World Service.

    The move comes just weeks after the government suddenly withdrew high-value bank notes, in an attempt to curb corruption. The finance minister, Arun Jaitley, has tabled proposals to impose a 50% tax on cash that cannot be accounted for, as long as it's surrendered by 30 December. 

    Any disclosure made after that date will attract a punitive 75% tax, or 85% if the cash is unearthed in a tax raid. 

    The recent withdrawal of 500 and 1,000 value rupee notes brought large parts of India's cash economy to a virtual standstill. A day of nationwide protests called by the main opposition Congress party resulted in sporadic demonstrations in many parts of the country(pictured). 

  7. Government aide's Brexit notes glimpsed

    A handwritten page of A4 notes being carried by a government adviser leaving Downing Street today, seemed to suggest the Government has already given up on staying in the European single market and will not go for a Norway-style deal, reports the Daily Mail. 

    Instead they indicate the UK is looking at a 'Canada-plus' trade arrangement, and will leave the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice as it does not 'fit' with the PM's determination to curb immigration.

    Number 10 dismissed the document and stressed that it did not represent government policy. 

    The notes were being carried by an adviser to Mark Field a pro-Remain  Conservative MP who represents the City of London. 

    Read more here

  8. New energy companies need more'scrutiny'

    BBC Radio 5 live

    Gas ring

    A former chief executive of one of the UK's biggest energy suppliers has said that greater scrutiny of new entrants to the market is needed before they get their licence.

    Paul Massara, who was in charge of Npower from 2013 to 2015, told BBC Radio 5 live Drive that Ofgem needs to do more to protect consumers.

    At the weekend, GB Energy Supply ceased trading.

    It said recent energy price rises had made its business untenable.

    Ofgem said: "Applicants have to go through a rigorous process to secure a supply licence. We carry out a number of checks before issuing a licence."

  9. Lufthansa pilots' strike

    Vereinigung Cockpit badge

    A quick reminder that Lufthansa pilots go on strike (again) tomorrow. It's part of a two-year-long pay dispute. The Cockpit union has called out members scheduled to fly short-haul routes from Germany on Tuesday and is adding long-haul routes to the walkout on Wednesday. 

    Lufthansa sought an injunction today from a Munich labour court to stop Tuesday's strike, but the court rejected the idea. The airline also failed to convince two Frankfurt courts to halt last week's strikes. Lufthansa said it was "examining further possible legal steps". 

    Lufthansa says it is now scrapping 816 flights on Tuesday and another 890 on Wednesday. This will affect around 82,000 and 98,000 passengers respectively.

  10. Reagan Rally vs Trump Trade

    The stock market rally kicked off by Donald Trump’s victory at the presidential election in November is “no Reagan bull market”, David Rosenberg at Gluskin Sheff has told the Financial Times.  

    Having hit record highs at the end of last week, stock indexes in the US have fallen in Monday trade.

    Mr Rosenberg told the FT that circumstances today were different to the eighties, including the fact that interest rates at that time were on the way down, whereas now they're on the way up.  

    The Reagan Rally lasted six years,” Mr Rosenberg said. “I give the Trump rally six weeks …at best”.  

  11. Tough times for savers

    Piggy bank

    If you've got money to save you won't really need to be reminded that interest rates for savers are abysmal.

    But the leading financial price comparison service, Moneyfacts, points out that five years ago some of the top rates on savings accounts paid three times as much interest as they do now.

    "Providers simply lack the need for savers’ deposits, and there doesn’t appear to be much help on the way to address this problem," says Rachel Springall at Moneyfacts.

    “Savers might well be treated to the much-anticipated investment bond from NS&I in the spring, paying 2.20%, but the maximum investment is £3,000, fixed for three years, so it is unlikely to appeal to those with a much larger pot, or those who do not want to tie up their cash over the longer term."

  12. UK rates to stay unchanged

    Interest rates in the UK will not change any time soon, if the views of Gertjan Vlieghe prevail.

    He is a member of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee which cut the UK's base rate to 0.25% in August in the aftermath of the Brexit vote, with the stated prospect of more cuts to come.

    But he and the Bank have changed their tune recently.

    Speaking at Sheffield University, he said: "For now, given our current economic outlook, and given the level of the exchange rate... the best contribution that monetary policy can make to returning inflation to target while avoiding undesirable volatility in output growth is to keep interest rates where they are now."

  13. Where now for Fairtrade?

    Cadbury Dairy Milk wrappers

    News that the UK's best known chocolate brand, Cadbury, is abandoning its Fairtrade certification has caused some concern in the food industry.

    Parent company Mondelez says it plans to bring all Cadbury lines under its existing in-house fair trade scheme, Cocoa Life.

    As a result, it says it will offer five times more sustainable chocolate in the UK by 2019.

    But critics warn this could confuse consumers.

    They also fear that shared standards for ethical trading will be lost if more firms drop Fairtrade. Read more here

  14. End of 'Trump trade'?

    Wall Street sign

    As at the open, US shares are still trading lower at the moment. 

    Kathleen Brookes, Research director at City Index Direct points out that stocks "tend to pull back once they reach record highs as investors take a breather". 

    But also, she adds, investor focus "appears to be shifting away from Trump’s shock Presidential win, to political risk elsewhere, notably Italy". ahead of Sunday's referendum. 

    "If Italy does not vote to change its constitution at its referendum on Sunday, then the market could be on high alert for the collapse of the Italian government, the potential collapse of Italy’s bank bailout program, which poses a risk to eight of Italy’s major lenders," she says. 

    "Overall, the outcome of Italy’s referendum could be bad news for risky assets globally, at least in the short term, which is another reason why the market is slightly cautious at the start of a new week.

    However, while she says "the Trump trade", which has boosted US shares and the dollar since the election, could start to slow down, she doubts it will disappear completely. "As political risk crosses the Atlantic to Europe, this makes US assets continue to look attractive to traders."

  15. Deutsche Telekom hit by hack attack?

    BBC World Service

    Deutsche Telekom logo

    The German phone service provider Deutsche Telekom says hackers may have cut the internet connections of almost a million users, reports BBC World Service.

    The disruption has been going on since Sunday and is affecting routers - the devices that connect households to the internet. 

    The company says the number of affected customers has now fallen to 400,000 as security measures have been implemented.

  16. Boeing claims 'victory'

    Aerospace company responds to WTO tax order

    Quote Message: Today's decision is a complete victory for the United States, Washington State and Boeing. The WTO found in September that Airbus has received $22bn in illegal subsidies from the EU and that without these subsidies neither Airbus itself nor any of its airplanes would even exist today. By contrast, in rejecting virtually every claim made by the EU in this case, the WTO found today that Boeing has not received a penny of impermissible subsidies. The WTO has repeatedly found that Airbus is entirely a creature of government, and they must now bring themselves into compliance with the international laws or risk massive sanctions. In light of today's decision and the massive liability that the WTO has found against the EU and Airbus, we expect the EU and Airbus to appeal today's decision. After any appeal, we fully expect Boeing to preserve every aspect of the Washington state incentives, including the 777X revenue tax rate. from J. Michael Luttig General counsel, Boeing
    J. Michael LuttigGeneral counsel, Boeing
  17. FTSE 100 closes down

    Blurred woman walks past London Stock Exchange sign

    The FTSE 100 has closed down by 41.28 points or 0.60% at 6,799.47.  

    One of the biggest fallers was Royal Bank of Scotland, which fell by 2.93%, ahead of the publication of the Bank of England's stress test results on Wednesday.   

    In Europe banking shares have come under pressure ahead of Sunday's referendum in Italy.If the government loses then the country's bank bailout programme could collapse. 

    The three top gainers of the day were all mining companies, Randgold, up by 4.37% and Fresnillo - up by 3.49% and Polymetal International up by 3.42%.

    They were boosted by a more than 1% rise in gold prices.

  18. Do umbrellas cause rain?

    Sterling notes and coins

    Are low interest rates counterproductive, either for the economy as a whole, or for a particular sector of the economy? Independent Bank of England Monetary Policy member Gertjan Vlieghe  is giving a speech at Sheffield University in which he examines the very question. 

    The MPC has kept the bank rate at 0.25% even though inflation is expected to be 0.5% above its target at the end of the forecast period because, he says, if the MPC tried to bring inflation down faster by putting up rates then that would hit growth and push up unemployment. 

    "The reason why the current policy rate is so low relative to history in the UK as well as in many other advanced economies, is that monetary policy is responding to persistent global disinflationary forces. It has been raining, so we have all opened our umbrellas,” said Mr Vlieghe.

    However, some people argue that lower interest rates cause the problems.

    Mr Vlieghe disagrees. “Umbrellas together with rainfall are observed in many countries. Nobody actually believes that umbrellas cause rainfall," he says. 

    “We have had several low interest rate, low inflation countries that have raised interest rates over the past decade. This was not followed by an escape from the alleged confidence trap. Higher interest rates, far from boosting demand and inflation, have caused growth to slow and inflation to fall,” he says.

    The argument that low rates hurt savers ignores the fact that savers hold non-deposit assets which benefit from low interest rates, he says. Addressing the idea that pensioners suffer as a result of low interest rates, he argues that pensioners have seen faster income growth than non-retired households since the financial crisis.

    Having examined the effect of low interest rates on different groups Mr Vliegh concludes that “there is no evidence that monetary stimulus has hurt them, once the broader effects of monetary policy on employment, wages, profits and the prices of widely held assets are also taken into account”.

    Read the speech here