Northern Rock bank has swung back into profit, six years after its failure and nationalisation, The Times reported. The bank, which came to symbolise the start of the banking crisis and was bought by Virgin Money last year, is on target to achieve a full-year profit this year.
HMV’S flagship music store on London’s Oxford Street will be turned into a Sports Direct after the sportswear retailer agreed a deal to move to the site, according to The Telegraph. Sports Direct is understood to have paid up to £5.0m to take on the lease of the space where HMV has been since it opened in 1984.
Members of Repsol’s board have rejected a settlement with Argentina over last year’s expropriation of its YPF unit which was proposed by one of the Spanish oil group’s largest shareholders Pemex, the Financial Times said. Pemex proposed abandoning a €10.5bn compensation claim against Argentina in return for forming a new joint venture in the country.
The Bank of England has called for an assessment of interest rate rises on borrowers, warning that many may struggle to keep up repayments on loans, The Guardian.
Chancellor George Osborne was accused of sending the jobless into the arms of foodbanks and payday lenders last night after announcing that the unemployed would have to wait seven days before claiming benefits, The Independent.
Rueters. A £100bn package aimed at kick-starting economic growth will be unveiled later, with roads, railways, construction and energy all set for major cash boosts. The Government will promise to pour money into extra infrastructure spending by 2020, just 24 hours after confirming details of £11.5bn in Whitehall cuts. Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander will outline the capital spending, which will include cash for new roads, train services, science facilities and nuclear power-stations. Tax breaks and fast-tracked permits for shale gas exploration will also be offered, just as new data suggests British reserves of the energy source are much higher than previously thought. The investment is due to begin as soon as 2015 with £50bn spent on capital projects that year but critics have questioned when construction will actually begin. Shadow chancellor Ed Balls said: “There is no point in boasting about infrastructure investment in five or seven years’ time, we need action now.”