LSBF Blog - Global Matters

UK SMEs R&D tax reliefs claims rise by a quarter

September 16 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

According to the latest government statistics, the number of UK SMEs that claim tax relief for research and development (R&D) has risen by almost a quarter.

The amount claimed has gone up from £1.4bn last year to £1.75bn as approximately 20,000 small businesses claim the relief, an increase from 16,000 previously.

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New CFO event attracts high profile names

September 15 ,2015 | by Erin O’Neill

A new conference aimed at CFOs brought together some of Britain’s top financial and business personalities at the Royal Society of Arts.

The first CFO Agenda saw a panel of top players in the UK economy analyse issues facing the financial sector and beyond.

The event was aimed at chief financial officers, finance directors, and their finance teams, with the panel of guest speakers including eminent economists.

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Experian audit moves to KPMG from PwC

September 15 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

KPMG has won the £8m contract as external auditor for global information services giant Experian from rivals PwC.

PwC have held the position for the last decade, but Big 4 competitors KPMG will take over for the financial year ending 31 March 2017.

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Sharpest fall since 1992 expected for US oil output

September 15 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

According to The International Energy Agency (IEA), next year US oil production will experience its biggest fall since 1992.

Low oil prices that have seen prices cut by half in the past year are blamed, together with overall slower economic growth.

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Biggest pay rise boom in Europe for UK workers

September 14 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Workers in the UK are likely to enjoy wage increases in real terms this year after suffering long periods of below inflation increases.

The latest Salary Budget Planning Study from Towers Watson UK workers will see the first real wage rise since 2007 this year, and only Germany will rival the UK level.

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Accountants warn business growth is being stunted by ‘too much regulation’

September 11 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

A new study of accounting, finance and business professionals has warned that too much regulation is holding back business growth.

The IFAC's survey found that two-thirds of the 300 respondents regarded the problem as a global issue that had a significant or very significant impact.

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“The Secret Millionaire” Mike Greene behind Morrisons stores takeover

September 11 ,2015 | by Erin O’Neill

The £25m takeover of Morrisons M Local shops is headed by Mike Greene, who previously starred in Channel 4’s The Secret Millionaire.

Best-known for investing in the Comet chain and now backed by Greybull Capital, Greene is leading the buyout of 140 of the convenience stores from the struggling supermarket retailer.

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Bad advice cost UK businesses £6.4bn this year, shows study

September 11 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

In excess of 320,000 British businesses have lost a total of £6.4bn in the last year due to receiving poor advice, says a new report.

Research conducted by Direct Line for Business revealed that the average SME loses more than £20,000 a year.

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ACCA members encouraged to work toward benefit of society and the profession

September 10 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

Members of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) have been urged to make sure they are working in the public interest, as stated in a speech by their President at a members' recognition ceremony in Toronto. 

In his keynote address, Anthony Harbinson asked his members to continue to promote responsible and ethical business practises with a wider aim of achieving sustainable global economic performance.

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FTSE 100 sets aside £1.7 billion for tax litigation

September 10 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

Although FTSE 100 companies have earmarked £1.66bn for tax litigation purposes this year, it is actually down 31% from last year according to Thomson Reuters.

In 2014, £2.39bn was set aside for tax disputes, but this year's move by some of the biggest firms in the UK economy is a strong signal that the tax authorities' corporate tax evasion and avoidance policies are working.

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British graduates see 4.2 per cent year-on-year pay rise

September 10 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Young graduates in Britain have witnessed a year-on-year average wage increase of £1,000, a growth of 4.2 per cent.

The wage growth increase for British employees has brought the nominal median salaries of young graduates up to £25,000. As a comparison, the figure for non-graduates in the same age range was £18,000.

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UK finance directors expect economy to continue positive growth

September 09 ,2015 | by Erin O’Neill

Confidence in the UK economy continues to be positive from the country's finance directors, although their expectations are more modest than last year.

According to a survey of more than 100 FDs and CFOs, 58% of those occupying some of the UK's top financial roles expect to see growth of 1%-2.5% over the next 12 months.

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Conviviality Retail in £200m wholesaler buyout

September 09 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

Conviviality Retail confirmed it is buying wholesaler Matthew Clark from Punch Taverns and Hertford Cellars for £200m.

The company's share price leapt after the announcement about the reverse takeover being struck via Conviviality's subsidiary Conviviality Brands, with Zeus Capital and Investec Bank acting on their behalf.

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Study shows price comparison sector benefits from memorable adverts

September 09 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

New YouGov BrandIndex data has revealed that memorable ad campaigns really work when it comes to companies operating in the price comparison sector of the UK.

The study found that ad campaigns that built momentum and become part of popular culture have distinct effects on the success of a business.

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Do universities really (not) offer value for money?

September 08 ,2015 | by Prof Maurits Van Rooijen

This question emerges from a recent ComRes survey which showed that four in ten students felt that their university course had not been worth the fee that they had paid, as reported by BBC Radio 5 Live.

This is in comparison to the last national student survey, which indicated 86% student satisfaction. So what are the factors that could affect these answers?

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Tesco in £4bn sale of South Korea stores

September 08 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Homeplus, Tesco's South Korean business, has been sold for £4.2bn, the UK's biggest supermarket chain and world's third largest retailer has announced.

With continued aggressive competition in the UK supermarket sector, the sale is aimed at paying down debt and shoring up the balance sheet.

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Northern Powerhouse plans hailed as biggest growth opportunity since Victorian era

September 07 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

The 'Northern Powerhouse' could be the most substantial growth opportunity for England's Northern regions since Victorian times, according to a leading research institute.

The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) is the UK's leading progressive think tank, and IPPR North is its dedicated arm dealing with the north of England, with bases in both Manchester and Newcastle.

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Advisers urged to help clients with competition law by watchdog

September 06 ,2015 | by Erin O’Neill

The Competition and Markets Authority has called on accountants to make sure their clients comply with competition law.

The non-ministerial government department has made a 60-second video summary that gives an introduction to competition law in the hope of keeping the issue fresh in the minds of advisors.

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New financial services transaction partner joins E&Y

September 05 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

Big Four firm E&Y (Ernst & Young) has appointed a new partner in its financial services transaction advisory practice.

Ajay Rawal is joining the leading UK accountancy sector company from Alvarez & Marsal, where he held the position of partner in the European financial industry advisory services group.

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Zero-hours contracts on the rise in the UK

September 04 ,2015 | by Helen Gould

According to new data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the number of workers in the UK who are on so called zero-hours contracts has gone up.

In the April to June period this year, 744,000 people were employed under the terms, which means that a 2.4% of the total number of people in work were affected. The number represents an increase of 0.4% on the same period from 2014.

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£6.6bn added to UK coffers by non-doms in 12 months

September 04 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

Although the issue of tax evasion by non-domiciled persons was a feature of the last election in the UK, the amount of tax revenue collected from them actually rose by 7%, according to city-based law firm Pinsent Masons.

In the firm's report, 2013/14 saw non-doms contribute £6.6bn in tax, an increase from £6.18bn on the previous year.

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IMF chief warns of slower growth after China shockwaves

September 04 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

The head of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde thinks that the shockwaves from China's economic problems will cause other countries in the region to lose momentum.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) boss warned that global growth will be weaker than forecasts have predicted as China’s manufacturing shrinks at its fastest rate since 2012. 

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UK economy expected to have strong autumn, reveals report

September 03 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

The UK economy is set to perform well over the coming autumn, according to a new report from the Confederation of British Industry.

A strong end to the year will come after the economy picked up over the spring and summer, with growth having increased from 0.4% in the first quarter to 0.7% in the second.

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Spending limit for UK contactless payments goes up to £30

September 03 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

Consumers in the UK can now make transactions of up to £30 by using contactless payment methods.

Replacing the previous limit of £20, card providers expect the change to see a sharp increase in the number of purchases using the system.

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Virgin Money’s chief financial officer to leave company

September 02 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

After only two years in the job, Virgin Money's Chief Financial Officer Lee Rochford is leaving the company.

Rochford, who joined Virgin Money in October 2013, will serve out his notice period, although he is effectively standing down as CFO and executive director with immediate effect.

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