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Live Reporting

By Bill Wilson and Simon Read

All times stated are UK

  1. Good night

    That's all for today.

    We'll be back tomorrow from 6am with more breaking business news.

    Do get in touch in the meantime at bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk

  2. You're running out of time to register to vote

    Voter standing outside polling station in EU referendum

    Finally, there are only around 30 hours left to register to vote in next month's general election.

    You need to register at least 12 working days before an election - so, with the election on 12 December, the deadline is 23:59 GMT on Tuesday.

    If you fail to sign up through the process, which takes about five minutes, then you will be unable to vote on election day.

  3. Sterling climbs against dollar and euro

    The pound is also up today.

    It's risen 0.38% against the dollar to $1.2882.

    Meanwhile it's up 0.54% against the euro at €1.1707.

  4. FTSE fallers

    Just six shares in the blue-chip index dipped into the red today.

    Worst performer was Fresnillo which fell 3.81% to 539.60.

    Meanwhile Imperial Brands lost 1.21%.

  5. FTSE risers

    There were plenty of risers in the blue-chip index today.

    Leading the pack was NMC Health which climbed 6.51% to 2,619.

    Kingfisher ended the day up 4.21% while Evraz was up 3.46%.

    Melrose Industries gained 3.25% while the Ashtead Group climbed 3.19%.

  6. FTSE 100 closes just short of 7,400

    As we predicted earlier, despite a late push the FTSE 100 failed to reach the 7,4000 mark at the close of trading, although it got tantalisingly close.

    It closed at 7,396.29 after climbing 0.95% or 69.48.

    The wider FTSE 250 index rose 1.06%, or 217.36, to close at 20,703.17.

  7. Corbyn pledges to pay Waspi women

    Video content

    Video caption: Corbyn on Waspi payments: 'We owe a morale debt to these women'

    So-called Waspi women, who lost out of years of state pension payments when the retirement age was raised under the coalition government, were "misled", Jeremy Corbyn has said.

    Those expecting to retire at 60 were told they would have to wait years longer when changes to the state pension age were accelerated in 2010.

    The Labour leader said that the situation needed "to be put right".

    Reality Check: What is Labour offering to Waspi women?

  8. FTSE looks like falling short of 7,400

    Despite hitting 7,400 in mid-afternoon, the FTSE 100 looks like failing to maintain enough momentum to end the day above that level.

    The blue-chip index has so far climbed 0.89% to rise 64.89 to 7,391.70.

    The FTSE 250 is up 0.91% with around ten minutes of trading to go.

  9. BreakingDont panic! Sports Direct renames itself Frasers

    Mike Ashley of Sports Direct

    Sports Direct is rebranding as the Frasers Group.

    The proposed rebrand follows a recent announcement that the retailer will launch a new luxury lifestyle store chain Frasers, to the high street within the next financial year.

    The company said the decision to rebrand "reflects the fact that this new, elevated concept will house the core areas of focus for the wider business – iconic brands, beauty, sports and luxury fashion".

    The rebranding will take place following shareholder agreement on 16 December 2019.

  10. Babcock wins £1bn Australian contract

    Aircraft carrier

    Defence giant Babcock has secured a new £1bn naval contract.

    The contractor has won a deal to supply the Australian Ministry of Defence with new weapons handling systems for its submarines.

    The FTSE 250 company said work to design and build the systems will start straight away.

    The preliminary design stage will take place in Bristol, before being handed over to Babcock's Australian business.

    Archie Bethel, the firm's chief executive, said: "The ability to transfer our unique Babcock intellectual property, know-how and expertise internationally across the group allows us to play an increasing role in ensuring the defence of countries around the world."

  11. Former WH Smith boss handed £3.4m farewell

    WH Smith branch

    Former WH Smith boss Stephen Clarke has been handed a £3.4m farewell pay packet by the retailer for the past year.

    Clarke, who stepped down as chief executive at the end of October, saw his total pay for the year to 31 August jump by 18.6% from a £2.9m deal in the previous year.

    His pay packet consisted of an annual salary of £568,000, up 3.2% from the same period last year, while his annual bonus rose by 10.7% to £908,000.

    The overall pay-out means that Mr Clarke will receive 207 times the average wage, based on a median figure, of a WH Smith employee.

  12. TSB promised to be something different. It isn't

    Simon Gompertz

    BBC personal finance correspondent

    The humiliation of last year's catastrophic breakdown has forced TSB to abandon grandiose promises.

    When it was hived off from Lloyds six years ago, it pledged to be a bank you could trust, without the "funny stuff" that tainted other scandal-ridden banks.

    It wowed people with a current account paying 5% interest.

    Its then chief executive, Paul Pester, attacked rivals for "savagely cutting branches" and made a firm commitment to his outlets, promising to expand the network.

    The IT failure knocked a deep dent in customer trust, and then TSB cut its flagship interest rate.

    And now Debbie Crosbie, the boss brought in to steady the ship, is targeting branches.

    It is true that the rise of the internet is forcing the industry to change.

    But that's the point. TSB promised it would be something different. Now we see it is just another bank.

  13. TSB move 'a kick in the teeth for older customers'

    Man on phone

    Age UK's Caroline Abrahams hasn't minced her words when responding to the news that TSB is shutting 82 branches.

    “This is another kick in the teeth for many older customers who are not online or confident with digital banking and who rely on their local branch to meet their banking need," she said.

    It is frankly unacceptable that banks are continuing to shut local branches and withdraw essential services before putting in place alternative solutions to meet the needs of their older customers, particularly those in rural and semi-rural areas.

    "All older customers have the right to access their cash and make and receive payments in a way that is safe, convenient and affordable."

  14. Your views on Uber

    Uber app

    The news that Uber has lost its London licence has prompted a mixed bag of responses from Business Live readers.

    "I’m delighted about this," writes Sheelagh Ward of Cheshire. But there's a specific reason why she dislikes Uber.

    "After the Manchester Area Ariande Grande bombing taxi drivers in both Manchester and Liverpool rallied on the stadium to run injured people to hospital or take them home... all for free. Uber trebled their prices!" she writes.

    Bob from France also reckons the company is bad news.

    "Uber has been taking the livelihoods away from real taxi drivers working in properly regulated and operated circumstances, and well-maintained cars."

    On the other hand a correspondent who describes themself as 'an Uber user' is against the scrapping. They write: "Keep Uber. I use them frequently. They're reliable, on time and reasonable."

    Martin MJ goes further, dubbing the TfL decision "ridiculous".

    He writes: "Khan and the TfL have made an absolutely ridiculous decision. You can't stand in the way of progress no matter how hard you try."

  15. Takeaway 'strongly committed' to buying Just Eat

    Just Eat delivery driver

    The boss of Takeaway.com is still "strongly committed" to buying UK food delivery firm Just Eat amid a battle with fellow Dutch firm Prosus.

    Jitse Groen said the merger would bring together the two firms' profits.

    "This merger combines the two most profitable European food delivery websites: Just Eat in the UK and Takeaway.com in the Netherlands," he said.

    "We remain strongly committed to the merger."

    The battle for Just Eat started when Prosus announced its plans to derail Takeaway's offer. The Dutch company had already agreed a £5bn bid for the firm with the board in August, but in October Prosus said it would enter the race.

    Earlier today the Just Eat board again rejected Prosus's bid.

  16. Wall Street rises after the opening bell

    Wall Street

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 42.15 points, or 0.15%, at the open to 27,917.77.

    The S&P 500 opened higher by 7.15 points, or 0.23%, at 3,117.44, while the Nasdaq Composite gained 39.76 points, or 0.47%, to 8,559.65 at the opening bell.

  17. Intu flogs Northern Ireland retail park

    Shopping centre

    Trafford Centre owner Intu has completed a £40m sale of Northern Ireland retail park.

    The retail landlord has sold the Sprucefield out-of-town retail park in Lisburn to rival property firm NewRiver, as part of a disposal programme.

    Intu has seen its share value more than halve since the start of 2019 as retailers collapsing, closing stores and asking for rent cuts weighed on the business.

    It has started selling sites in a bid to reduce its debts, with its net external debt standing at £4.87bn according to its latest annual report.

    In April, Intu sold a 50% stake in its Derby shopping centre to investment firm Cale Street for £186 million.

    Matthew Roberts, chief executive of Intu, said: "We are pleased to conclude this transaction, which along with the part-disposal of Intu Derby and other sundry asset sales in 2019 brings the year to date disposals total to £268m."

  18. BreakingViagogo buys used ticket rival StubHub for $4bn

    Fans at a concert

    Ticket reseller Viagogo has snapped up rival StubHub from eBay for $4.05bn (£3.14bn)

    “Bringing these two companies together creates a win-win for fans - more choice and better pricing,” said Eric Baker, Viagogo boss, who co-founded StubHub while in business school, but left before the business was sold to eBay for $310m in 2007.

    “It has long been my wish to unite the two companies. I am so proud of how StubHub has grown over the years and excited about the possibilities for our shared future.” he added.

    The sale is expected to close by the end of the first quarter of 2020, subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

    View more on twitter
  19. FTSE 100 now almost 1% up on the day

    FTSE graph

    The FTSE 100 is still climbing, as our graph (above) shows.

    It's now up 0.95% on the day, gaining 69.56 to 7,396.37, close to passing that 7,400 level.