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Summary

  1. Opec announces details of output cut deal pushing oil prices higher
  2. Brent and US crude prices soar more than 9%
  3. Dow Jones and S&P 500 hit intraday highs, before falling back
  4. FTSE closes at 6,783.79, led higher by energy stocks
  5. RBS biggest failure in Bank of England stress tests
  6. Brexit poses risk to UK financial stability: Bank of England
  7. Get in touch: bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk and @BBCBusiness

Live Reporting

By Karen Hoggan

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Good night

    That's it for another day on Business Live. 

    It's been a busy one, with the Bank of England's bank stress tests dominating the early part of the day, and those output cuts by the oil producing nations dominating later headlines. 

    Do join us again from 6:30am tomorrow, if you can, for all the news that the world of business has to bring. 

  2. Brazil cuts interest rates

    Brazilian flag

    Brazil's central bank has cut interest rates by 0.25%, continuing its moderate pace of monetary easing, despite a deepening recession that threatens to carry on for a third year.

    The bank's monetary policy committee voted unanimously to cut the benchmark rate to 13.75%. It was its second cut in a row. It had previously kept borrowing costs unchanged for more than a year.  

    Earlier on Wednesday it emerged that Brazil's economic output shrank by 0.8% in the third quarter compared with the second. 

    "Fourth-quarter numbers do not give much reason for optimism either. Confidence indicators are signaling they could fall, reflecting some disappointment with how long the economy is taking to lift off," said Newton Rosa, chief economist at SulAmerica Investimentos.

  3. Wall Street fails to maintain earlier gains

    Wall Street sign

    It was a mixed bag at the close on Wall Street, despite the Dow Jones and S&P 500 having earlier hit intraday highs following the news of the output cut agreed by oil producing nations in Vienna. 

    The rises in energy company and bank shares failed to make up for losses by other stocks. 

    In the end the Dow Jones just scraped into positive territory - it was up 1.78 points of 0.01% at 19,123.38.

    However, despite earlier gains the S&P 500 ended down slightly at 2,198.83, that's a fall of 5.85 points or 0.27%.

    And the tech-heavy Nasdaq was also down. It ended the day at 5,323.68, a fall of 56.24 points or 1.05%, dragged down by falls in technology stocks. 

  4. What's so special about Belgian beer?

    BBC World Service

    The history of Belgian beer stretches back centuries to medieval monks, and now Unesco is being asked to add the drink to its Intangible Cultural Heritage list. 

    Beer sommelier Jane Payton told World Business Report why Belgian beer is deserving of such recognition, but first the BBC's Benjie Guy took to the streets of London to find out what people know about the drink.  

    Video content

    Video caption: Belgian beer has been recognised by Unesco's cultural heritage list
  5. Afghanistan to get first mortgages for 15 years

    BBC World Service

    Afghanistan's central bank has announced that it will shortly offer the country's first mortgage loans since the fall of the Taliban fifteen years ago, reports BBC World Service.

    This will help people in cities buy flats, something they've done up to now by borrowing from friends.

    Islamic Shari'ah law prohibits interest payments. But the state-run lending bank says Shari'ah should allow these mortgage schemes. 

    The customer will pay a 10% deposit. Meanwhile the bank will buy the flat, add 4% on its value, and then sell it to the buyer in instalments. 

  6. Christmas card shop goes out of business

    Children's Christmas card design

    A company that converts schoolchildren's artwork into Christmas cards has gone out of business.

    A statement on Schoolcardshop's website said that its parent company, digital and personalised print supplier Dynamic Colour, was no longer trading.

    The Edinburgh-based firm added that further details would be available on the site "in due course".

    Schoolcardshop allows families to create and personalise cards.

    More on this story here

  7. BreakingLooking for 'potential solutions' for tallow in £5 note?

    New £5 notes

    The Bank of England has just released the following statement about the controversy over traces of tallow in the new £5 notes.

    Quote Message: We are aware of some people’s concerns about traces of tallow in our new five pound note. We respect those concerns and are treating them with the utmost seriousness. This issue has only just come to light, and the Bank did not know about it when the contract was signed. Information recently provided by our supplier, Innovia, and its supply chain shows that an extremely small amount of tallow is used in an early stage of the production process of polymer pellets, which are then used to create the base substrate for the five pound note. Innovia is now working intensively with its supply chain and will keep the Bank informed on progress towards potential solutions. from Bank of England statement
    Bank of England statement
  8. The Beige Book

    How is the US economy doing? OK it seems.

    In its latest collection of anecdotal evidence from around the country - known as the Beige Book - the Federal Reserve says the economy continued to expand in October and November.

    The Fed said activity varied across the regions, but that the regional economic outlooks were mainly positive, with six districts expecting "moderate" growth. 

  9. Brent crude carries on climbing

    Intraday Brent crude price graphic

    And for those of you following today's upwards march of the oil price - it's climbed still higher since the details of the cut in production were revealed. It's now 10.1% higher.

  10. The changing price of crude oil

    This graph tells you what you need to know

    Crude oil price graph
  11. Aberdeen UK Tracker Trust

    AUKT website

    Earlier today, it was announced that the investment trust industry is to lose its only tracker.

    The Aberdeen UK Tracker Trust (AUKT) tracks the FTSE All Share index and has £334m under management. 

    It is now going to merge with the BlackRock Income Strategies Trust, known until a couple of years ago as British Assets. 

    Shareholders in AUKT will be offered either cash for their existing shares, or shares in the new trust, which will be called Aberdeen Diversified Income and Growth Trust (ADIGT). 

    The explanation for all this is that these days investors who want to put money in a passive tracker are most likely to do so via exchange traded funds (ETFs). 

    If you want to know more about the slightly opaque world of investment trusts, I can recommend reading the Financial Times' guide to investment trusts written by John Baron. 

  12. Sam Cam launches fashion line

    Samantha Cameron wearing top and skirt outfit

    Samantha Cameron is launching her first fashion label named Cefinn.

    The wife of former prime minister David Cameron has designed a 40-piece collection which will be sold early next year.

    Mrs Cameron said she was inspired to start the label as there were not many British brands that fit the "designer contemporary" bracket.

    The brand name is derived from her children's names - Elwen, Florence, Ivan and Nancy. Read more here

  13. Trump's 'tax revolution'

    Michelle Fleury

    North America Business Correspondent

    Will Donald Trump deliver on his promise of the biggest 'tax revolution' since Ronald Reagan? 

    According to Steven Mnuchin, the man named for the role of Treasury secretary, the answer is yes. 

    He confirmed that Mr Trump will push to cut the top corporate tax rate from 35% to 15%

    The President-elect also wants to offer a tax holiday on overseas profits.

    This has long been a sore point for congressional leaders who have gone after multinationals that are, in their opinion, not paying their fair share. 

    The most striking example is the technology giant Apple.

    Its chief executive Tim Cook has said in the past that he would "love to" repatriate Apple's foreign profits but that he can't because it would cost too much. 

    US firms are supposed to pay federal taxes on their global profits, but the tax on money made overseas is only due when it's brought back to the US.

    American companies have an estimated $2.6 trillion in profits sitting untaxed overseas. 

    By lowering the corporate tax rate, Donald Trump wants to give companies an incentive to bring that money back to US shores where it can be put to use to boost growth and create jobs.

    But many economists argue that lowering the corporate tax rate to 25% would have the same effect without as much lost revenue. 

    And then there's the politics. 

    Donald Trump's plan can only be enacted by changing the tax law. 

    And while Republicans maintain control of both chambers of Congress, their grip on the Senate is less firm. 

    There, Republicans are likely to hold only 52 seats, leaving the door open for Democrats to obstruct or delay any tax change and prevent them from reaching the 60 votes needed.

  14. Brent Crude price up by 9%

    Brent crude intraday price graphic

    A quick update on the oil price now - and, as the above graphic shows, Brent Crude has increased its gains and is trading 9.1% higher, following that press conference in Vienna outlining the details of a cut in oil output. 

  15. Battle against shale lost?

    Andrew Walker

    World Service economics correspondent

    Shale gas workers

    So Opec have finally done what they usually do – cutting production to deal with prices that are hurting their economies and government finances.  

    One of the reasons for the delay was generally thought to be Saudi Arabia’s welcome for the damage done to the shale oil industry in the US – whose rise was one of the key forces behind the price decline in the first place.

    It didn’t really work. US industry oil production has declined somewhat this year, but it is still more than it was in 2014. 

    Any boost to prices now is likely to bring more shale on stream – and they will probably “hedge” or make sure they are covered if prices subsequently fall back. Among the messages implied by Opec’s decision: the battle against shale has been lost.

  16. Big Mac creator dies

    Big Mac in front of McDonald's logo

    The creator of the Big Mac has died. 

    Jim Delligatti - who was 98 - came up with the idea in 1967, when he was running McDonald's restaurants in the US state of Pennsylvania. 

    His recipe - two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions on a sesame seed bun - was originally called the "aristocrat" and the "blue ribbon burger" before becoming popular world-wide as the Big Mac.   

  17. FTSE 100 shake up

    Gold miner Polymetal and builders merchant Travis Perkins have fallen out of the FTSE 100, in the quarterly review of the index. They've been replaced by ConvaTec and Smurfit Kappa. Get the full details here

    Travis Perkins
    Quote Message: Polymetal’s time in the UK’s premier index only lasted three months as it suffered from the reversal in the price of gold since the US election as investors moved away from safe haven assets in the hope that increased fiscal stimulus will boost markets. Travis Perkins lasted longer at three years but was hurt by a profit warning in October. Market newcomer, ConvaTec only listed in October in a £1.5 billion deal priced at 225p a share but already has a market cap of £4.8 billion. It is a health care equipment expert specialising in continence and critical care, as well as wound and skin care. Smurfit Kappa is a paper-based packaging giant domiciled in Ireland and joins countrymen DCC and CRH in the index. from Russ Mould Investment director, A J Bell
    Russ MouldInvestment director, A J Bell