Business

Kenya starts selling bonds via mobile phones

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Kenya’s government is initially seeking to raise $1.5m (£1.2m) from the mobile bonds Kenya has become the first country to exclusively sell government bonds to citizens via their mobile phones, as it seeks new ways of raising money. The country is already a pioneer in the use of mobile […]

Business

What Next for shops?

Image copyright Reuters If you want a clear explanation of what’s wrong with the retail sector, read Next’s results statement. Not a recommendation you’d hear very often, frankly, about most companies’ financial reporting. But rather than seeming designed to confuse and mislead, Next’s report crisply spells out the challenges it’s facing. And of course it’s […]

Business

Higher fuel prices take toll on retail sales

Image copyright Getty Images UK retail sales posted a 1.4% rise in February from the previous month, but there are signs that higher fuel prices have begun to hit shoppers’ pockets. In the three months to February, sales volumes fell by 1.4%, a sharper slide than the 0.5% decline for the three months to January. […]

Business

Next sees first annual profit fall in eight years

Image copyright Newscast Next has posted its first fall in annual profit for eight years and has warned of “another tough year ahead”. Pre-tax profit at the clothing and homeware retailer dropped 5.5% from £836.1m to £790.2m last year. The firm, which had warned profits would fall, said it remained “extremely cautious” about trading. It […]

Business

Energy price cap implications ominous, former regulators say

Image copyright PA Energy experts have warned the government not to intervene in the market by capping prices. According to five former energy regulators, such a move would have an “adverse effect” on the market and could have “ominous implications”. Their intervention comes amid speculation that the government is poised to announce price controls for […]

Business

'I am very confident we can find a good trade deal'

The UK government is expected to trigger Article 50 next week, kick-starting the process for Britain to leave the European Union. Export-oriented businesses will face being outside the EU’s single market. So how are businesses changing their strategies to cope with Brexit? Cecile Reinaud runs Seraphine, a London-based maternity wear company. She is on an […]

Business

‘Vegetable ivory’

Image copyright Ivonne Wierink Image caption The tagua seed reaches 9cm (3.5 inches) in length, and can be carved like ivory Onno Heerma van Voss jokes that he never intended to be a conservationist, but he is helping to save the African elephant. Numbers of elephants in the wild are still falling; it’s estimated 100 […]

Business

Brexit vote: Single market benefit 'largely imaginary'

Image copyright Getty Images The trade benefits of belonging to the European Union have been “largely imaginary”, according to the social policy think-tank Civitas. Its analysis argues that exports from non-EU countries to the single market have grown faster than the UK’s, since its creation in 1993. That lends weight to the argument that no […]

Business

Libor expert witness texted for help

Media captionThe BBC’s Andrew Verity explains the Libor scandal A prosecution witness called by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) as an expert on trading has admitted texting friends in the middle of his trial evidence to ask basic questions. Saul Haydon Rowe texted a friend for help in explaining email evidence he had been asked […]