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LSBF Blog - Global Matters

2.3% public sector apprenticeships target exceeded

2.3% public sector apprenticeships target exceeded

The Department of Education has exceeded the target that it set itself for the recruitment of apprentices in 2017. The apprenticeship levy was first launched in April last year, with public sector bodies being obliged to make certain that a minimum of 2.3% of the workforce is made up of apprentices each year.

After just over a year, the Department has succeeded in meeting and even exceeding that target, and is now giving until the end of September for all of the other eligible public bodies to release their own figures.

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Digital innovation transforming financial services

Digital innovation transforming financial services

The ways in which people are managing their money are being transformed by digital innovation – with apps at the forefront of the changes – as consumers in the UK logged into their banking apps as many as 5.5 billion times in 2017.

Customers are increasingly making use of new technologies to consult with experts away from normal banking hours instead of having to do so during their working day, with over 5.5 million customer web chats taking place last year, according to the major banks.

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UK economy to be boosted by 2,500 new Amazon jobs

UK economy to be boosted by 2,500 new Amazon jobs

Amazon is to create 2,500 permanent new jobs in the UK this year, which will see the total number of jobs in the country provided by the e-commerce giant rise to 27,500 by the close of 2018.

Over 650 permanent new positions are to be created in Amazon’s development centres as well as in the Amazon Web Services division, and there will be hundreds of new roles in the company’s head office, according to the company.

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Emerging market parents ahead in education help

June 07 ,2018 | by LSBF Blog Staff

Emerging market parents ahead in education help

One of the biggest gaps in knowledge when analysing the education system of emerging economies has been the opinions of parents, who have the biggest influence on youngsters. Despite some cultural stereotypes, there has been a dearth of real data on the subject – until now.

A comprehensive worldwide study has been undertaken by the Varkey Foundation to examine the fears, hopes and opinions of more than 27,000 parents in as many as 28 different countries, and has revealed that the view of education in emerging markets is quite different from those of parents in the West. Parents in the emerging world spend far more time assisting their kids with education than is the case in the developed world.

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Funding applications encouraged for smart tracking of waste

Funding applications encouraged for smart tracking of waste

Up to £40,000 is to be invested by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs into projects that make use of digital technology to track the way that waste moves through the UK economy.

The investment represents one aspect of the UK government’s GovTech Catalyst project, which aims to give businesses incentives to create intelligent solutions to challenges in the public sector.

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Hopes rise for increase in skilled visas cap

Hopes rise for increase in skilled visas cap

The UK government is paying close attention to the impact of a cap on skilled visas that resulted in over 1,000 doctors being refused entry to the UK between December 2017 and March this year, it has been revealed by Downing Street.

On Sunday, Home Secretary Sajid Javid increased hopes of the cap being lifted by noting that he was giving a fresh look to the policy, putting pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May to have the restrictions loosened.

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UK economy to be boosted by World Cup

UK economy to be boosted by World Cup

In two weeks, the 2018 FIFA World Cup will get underway in Russia, and according to estimates from a new report, the UK economy could be boosted by as much as £1.33bn, potentially even reaching £2.72bn if England get to the final.

With retailers and brands expecting a spending spree, UK-based digital marketplace VoucherCodes has broken down the expected consumer spending across categories in a new study, which also forecasts how much is likely to be spent at the different stages of the tournament.

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Schools get free website to advertise new jobs

Schools get free website to advertise new jobs

Education Secretary Damian Hinds has decided to clamp down on agencies that he believes overcharge schools for advertising vacancies and trying to recruit new staff members in a bid to save money and allow teachers to stay focused on their main priority.

 

Supply teachers are relied on by many schools at some time during the school year in order to cover both long and short-term vacancies, and schools often have to pay for advertisements in order to recruit necessary staff members. They are often charged very expensive finder’s fees by agencies if head teachers decide to give their supply staff permanent positions. These agencies often do not make clear the full nature of their fees in addition to the basic wages that are given to supply staff.

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Merger offer raised by CYBG with Virgin Money

Merger offer raised by CYBG with Virgin Money

CYBG, the owner of Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks, has reportedly given Virgin Money a revised offer of £1.7bn in order to merge and create a challenger bank that would be worth £4bn.

CYBG’s interest in Virgin Money surfaced early last month, when a preliminary approach was made by the company, which valued the latter at £1.6bn, offering 1.1297 of its shares in return for all shares of Virgin Money.

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Being Global - Future-proof your career in accountancy

Being Global - Future-proof your career in accountancy

There are many routes into accountancy, are you confused whether to go into audit, statutory reporting or management accounting amongst others? Which one is the right one for you?

LSBF ‘Being Global - Future-proof your career in accountancy’ conference on 11th June has been designed to give clarity and advice on which is the right career path for you.

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Small business retention deposit schemes supported by accounting body

Small business retention deposit schemes supported by accounting body

The Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) is the first accounting body to lend its support to a multi-business, cross-party campaign aimed at introducing retention deposit schemes targeted at SMEs. The new scheme would put an end to the practice of withholding payments for unreasonable amounts of time and remove the risk of losing retention costs via contractor bankruptcy.

Conservative MP Peter Aldous kick-started the campaign with the introduction of a Private Members’ Bill in order to protect retention deposits in conjunction with construction contracts. 

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OECD upgrades UK growth forecast

OECD upgrades UK growth forecast

The OECD has upgraded the growth forecast for the UK in spite of previous worries over the Brexit issue while still noting a failure to improve in terms of productivity. The influential worldwide organisation said that the UK economy is set to grow quicker across the rest of this year and in 2019 than was previously believed, despite continued uncertainties over the country’s withdrawal from the EU.

The most recent Economic Outlook report, which is published twice a year, points out that the economic growth of the UK remains relatively modest in comparison to other major economies, projecting the GDP to rise by 1.4% this year, a revised upward projection from the 1.2% that was predicted in the previous forecast.

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Strong growth expected by UK SMEs

Strong growth expected by UK SMEs

Nearly two-thirds (65%) of SME owners believe that a bright future is on the way with forecasts of growth of up to as much as 40% over the course of the next two years, according to the annual survey of SMEs in the UK carried out by Wesleyan Bank, the specialist commercial finance provider.

The SME Heroes or Zeros 2018 report shows that 54% have greater confidence regarding the prospects of their companies in 2019, with the possible impact of Brexit a source of concern for just 11% of respondents. Even in spite of the uncertain economy of the UK, the findings demonstrate that there has been a significant shift from business owners in terms of defiance.

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Small increase in UK economy consumer confidence

Small increase in UK economy consumer confidence

This week, UK economists are looking for hopeful indications of a rise in consumer confidence following last week’s confirmation that the nation’s economy put in a poor performance during the first quarter of 2018. According to consensus, business expectations indicate that the consumer confidence data set to be published on Thursday by GfK will show a marginal pickup from the negative nine to eight reading, Trading Economics has reported.

Consumer confidence is a crucial bellwether for the future of economic growth in the Gross Domestic Product, especially given how heavily dependent the UK economy is on services.

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Coworking affects small business and start-up innovation

Coworking affects small business and start-up innovation

Coworking is increasingly big business in the UK. Those who decide to cowork when building a start-up enterprise, those who are running a team remotely, and big corporations offering greater autonomy and flexibility are contributing to the coworking market’s massive growth, which is showing no indication of declining.

According to a forecast from the Global Coworking Unconference Conference, there will be as many as 5.1 million paid coworking members and 30,432 spaces all over the world, with an annual growth rate at an average of 24.2% in the market since 2007.

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Distance learning on the rise

Distance learning on the rise

Online MBA programs offer students the ability to study anywhere and at any time they choose, even while holding down a job, so long as they have access to the internet. According to the Graduate Management Admissions Council, flexibility, and having access to high-quality programs without the need for travel, are two of the biggest reasons why students are choosing to take an MBA program online rather than on a traditional campus.

There are a wide array of MPA programs beginning to pop up online, and while most require at least some campus time for students, a growing number are delivering their courses completely online.

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CIMA and ICAN to build Nigerian Accountants Research Centre

CIMA and ICAN to build Nigerian Accountants Research Centre

The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) has decided to enter into an agreement with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) in regards to the establishment of a new academic research centre for accountants that would be able to contribute to the various economies on the continent and deliver high-quality work.

ICAN’s President Ismail Zakari stated on Monday at the Memorandum of Understanding signing in Abuja that the two bodies have already been in discussion regarding areas in which they can cooperate, including reciprocal collaboration that would allow members of CIMA to become members of ICAN and vice versa.

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75% of accountants are aware of Making Tax Digital, research shows

75% of accountants are aware of Making Tax Digital, research shows

Research from accounting software provider Intuit QuickBooks has shown that 75% of accountants are aware of Making Tax Digital (MTD), a legislation that will see businesses being required to keep digital records and provide quarterly updates instead of filing annual tax returns.

The study explored accountants’ views on MTD and found that more than 35% believe that the introduction of the legislation will provide an opportunity to drive positive change within the accounting industry.

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Employers feeling more confident about UK economy, study shows

Employers feeling more confident about UK economy, study shows

A report from the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) has found that more employers are feeling positive about the UK economy, with confidence reaching its highest level since August 2017.

The study found that 30% of employers in the UK are feeling confident about the future prospects of the economy, compared to 29% who believe that economic conditions are getting worse.

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EPA calls for open banking amendments to boost fintech access

EPA calls for open banking amendments to boost fintech access

The Emerging Payments Association (EPA) is calling for the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) to make amendments to the Open Banking initiative’s framework to help financial technology firms to realise its potential.

The UK payments industry trade body believes that banks should be forced to help fintechs have access to Open Banking and that more should be done to boost consumer trust in the initiative.

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London named the UK’s most entrepreneurial region

London named the UK’s most entrepreneurial region

A study from financial comparison website Know Your Money has revealed that London is the UK’s most entrepreneurial region, with 66.2% of London-based respondents considering starting their own business.

The study found that 47.6% of UK adults want to set up their own business, with this figure increasing to 64.8% for those between the ages of 16 to 24.

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British consumers are embracing financial technology, report shows

British consumers are embracing financial technology, report shows

A report from UK banking and financial services trade association UK Finance and Big Four accountancy firm EY has shown that consumers in Britain are embracing fintech, with more people using new technology to interact with their bank.

The study showed that more UK consumers are using mobile banking, with the number of log-ins from mobile apps hitting 5.5 billion in 2017, up by 13% from the previous year.

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FCA advises banks to use new technologies to tackle cybercrime

FCA advises banks to use new technologies to tackle cybercrime

UK financial regulatory body UK Finance has urged banks to use new technologies, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, to fight cybercrime.

Discussing the issue in a speech at the FCA’s Cross-Border Anti-Money Laundering TechSprint, the regulatory body’s executive director of supervision - investment, wholesale and specialist, Megan Butler, stated that technology is crucial to the protection of institutions when it comes to financial crime.

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Report shows increase in number of UK scale-up businesses

Report shows increase in number of UK scale-up businesses

A report from accountancy, tax and investment firm Smith & Williamson has shown an increase in the number of scale-up businesses in the UK.

The study, entitled Dream bigger: the scale-up moment, found that young entrepreneurs are the main driver of growth in scale-up businesses, with more than 40% of these businesses being founded by people aged 34 and under.

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APSCo figures show increase in permanent finance vacancies

APSCo figures show increase in permanent finance vacancies

The latest figures from the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo) have shown that the number of permanent vacancies in the financial services sector increased by 10% in the 12 months leading up to April 2018.

The research, which focuses on professional recruitment, also showed an increase in permanent placements in financial services, with an annual rise of 19%.

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