LSBF Blog - Global Matters

Nationwide marks turnaround with 54% profit increase

Nationwide marks turnaround with 54% profit increase

Nationwide Build Society posted £1 billion in profits for the year to April.

Nationwide Building Society has recorded a 54 per cent rise in annual profits, barely two years after the lender faced a £1 billion black hole in its finances.

The building society, one of the last in the UK to retain the mutual model where it is owned by customers rather than shareholders, said pre-tax profits for the year to April climbed to £1.04 billion.

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FTSE 100 gets 6th female CEO as Whitbread appoints Lloyds retail boss

May 22 ,2015 | by Helen Gould

FTSE 100 gets 6th female CEO as Whitbread appoints Lloyds retail boss

Whitbread, owners of Costa Coffee and Premier Inn, appoint Alison Brittain as CEO.

Hospitality group Whitbread has announced plans to appoint Alison Brittain as chief executive officer (CEO) in a move that will make it the sixth FTSE-100 company to have a female at the helm.

Ms Brittain is the current boss of the retail side of Lloyds Banking Group, making her one of the most powerful women in the city. But despite having no previous hospitality experience, she was quoted to be the “perfect fit” for Whitbread’s culture and values by chairman Richard Baker.

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International students boost UK economy by £2.3bn, says report

May 21 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

International students boost UK economy by £2.3bn, says report

Students from overseas contribute £2.3 billion towards the UK economy, shows new study by PwC.

Foreign students coming to study in London contribute a net £2.3 billion to the UK economy and support 70,000 jobs, according to new research from PwC and commissioned by London First.

The report, titled “London Calling: International students”, will go along way to overturn claims that overseas students are a burden upon taxpayers, especially since the figure of £2.3 billion has already taken into account the estimated £540 million costs these students have on public services, including the NHS.

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Business leaders call for SME hub outside of London

Business leaders call for SME hub outside of London

Nine out of ten SME directors would support the creation of an SME hub outside of London.

The creation of a small and medium enterprise (SME) hub would be “beneficial to the UK economy”, according to a new AXA report, and nine out of ten (89 per cent) SME directors would support it. Furthermore, 93 per cent see a demand for a non-London-based hub to “create an environment for growth for small businesses”.

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Sajid Javid plans to cut red tape by £10 billion

May 19 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

Sajid Javid plans to cut red tape by £10 billion

New UK business secretary Sajid Javid to cut red tape by £10 billion over next five years.

Sajid Javid, the new business secretary, will outline how the new parliament will cut red tape for businesses by at least £10 billion. It will be his first speech since replacing Vince Cable and will include details of the enterprise bill alongside plans to create two million jobs over the next five years.

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Restaurant industry turnover up 39 per cent since 2010

Restaurant industry turnover up 39 per cent since 2010

The UK restaurant sector has boomed with turnover reaching £21 billion, a 39 per cent increase in five years.

Britain’s restaurants continued to cater to the public and saw business positively boom in the years since 2010, despite the economic downturn. Turnover in the dining out industry reached £21.6 billion in 2014, an increase of 39 per cent from the £15.5 billion recorded in 2010, according to data from Companies House analysed by finance company LDF.

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Saudi Arabian stock market opens to foreign investors

May 18 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

Saudi Arabian stock market opens to foreign investors

Foreign direct investment in Saudi Arabia’s stock market will soon become possible.

One of the world’s most restricted stock exchanges will soon open up to foreign investors, according to Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority (CMA). The move will take place on June 15th and is already attracting “absolutely phenomenal” interest, according to an expert at HSBC bank.

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UK unemployment hits seven-year low

May 14 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

UK unemployment hits seven-year low

Unemployment rates in the UK have fallen to 5.5 per cent, their lowest levels since 2008.

The number of people without a job in the UK declined to a seven-year low, according to official figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Furthermore, the data has highlighted that wages are also growing.

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Cities in UK to gain devolved powers

May 14 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

Cities in UK to gain devolved powers

UK Chancellor George Osborne is set to outline plans for “radical devolution” of powers to English cities.

In his first major speech after the General Election, UK chancellor George Osborne promised cities in England the chance to gain devolved powers. The one caveat is that these cities must agree to be governed by a directly elected mayor.

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French economy outpaces that of UK and US

May 13 ,2015 | by Helen Gould

French economy outpaces that of UK and US

Economic growth in France surged past expectations to its highest rate in two years.

Figures on Wednesday showed economic growth in France accelerated in the first three months of this year. In fact, it hit France’s joint-highest figure since 2011.

The French INSEE statistical office reported that the nation’s economy grew by 0.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2015, surpassing expectations for growth of 0.4 per cent.

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Business organisations call for action from Sajid Javid

May 12 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

Business organisations call for action from Sajid Javid

British businesses have already outlined what they hope new Business Secretary Sajid Javid will prioritise.

The UK welcomes the appointment of Sajid Javid by David Cameron as the new Secretary of State for Business, but he’d barely put a foot through the door before the business community begin setting out their priorities.

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HSBC aims to ramp up SME lending

HSBC aims to ramp up SME lending

The UK’s largest bank has set aside £8 billion in order to offer SMEs a helping hand.

Lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will be given a welcome boost as HSBC sets up a new £8 billion fund. The bank also plans to do away with some of the many fees on business loans that firms incur in order to support smaller companies that can ill afford them.

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The pros of an MBA – Prof Maurits responds to Observer article

The pros of an MBA – Prof Maurits responds to Observer article

Ryan Holmes makes a couple of fair comments when he questions the value of the MBA.

It is true that anyone can get rich without an MBA. Buying a lottery ticket does not require an MBA and since the lottery makes someone very rich, some might take that as proof that no MBA is required. And, of course, there are several genius artists who made it rich without an MBA (some even without any arts education).

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China rate cut indicates economic slowdown

May 11 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

China rate cut indicates economic slowdown

China’s third interest rate reduction in six months hints at further slowing economy.

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) has cut interest rates for the third time in six months to boost the nation’s slowing economy. However, while shares in China surged on the news to erase earlier losses, it’s likely that the rate cut indicates further economic slowdowns on the horizon.

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UK election result sends FTSE, pound soaring

May 08 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

UK election result sends FTSE, pound soaring

Britain’s General Election boosted financial markets after a Conservative majority win became clear.

The UK’s General Election race ended with a note of finality on Friday, as the previously too-close-to-call election developed into an emphatic victory for the Conservative party. Sterling soared and the FTSE-100 was lifted higher as investors cheered the news.

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Mobile-friendly sites become crucial after Google ‘mobilegeddon’

Mobile-friendly sites become crucial after Google ‘mobilegeddon’

On 21 April, Google implemented a major overhaul of its search algorithm, making it more compatible with mobile platforms in a move that online marketers and developers have called “mobilegeddon”.

The reasoning behind Google’s move is clear, as more and more customers use their mobile devices to browse the internet.

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Broadband growth drives BT Group profits

May 07 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Broadband growth drives BT Group profits

Telecoms group BT reports rise in annual profits is driven by broadband and football.

The telecoms giant, BT Group, announced impressive growth in pre-tax profits on the year, which the group said is being driven by attracting new broadband customers. BT claimed it’s securing more new broadband customers than any of its rivals, which could be down to the group securing the rights to screen a number of sporting events.

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Sainsbury’s records first loss in a decade

May 06 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Sainsbury’s records first loss in a decade

As Tesco continues to deal with its mega loss, Sainsbury’s posts its first annual loss for ten years.

Sainsbury’s, the UK’s third-largest supermarket chain, just announced its first full-year loss in a decade. It’s a sign that the competition between British supermarkets is increasing and the news has sent Sainsbury’s share price tumbling.

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Exploring the business of sports

May 06 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Exploring the business of sports

In the aftermath of the record-revenue-breaking Mayweather vs Pacquiao boxing match, we explore what makes sport the money-making industry it is today.

Sport in the modern day is as much about business as it is athleticism. Many sports teams and sporting individuals have been moulded into internationally recognisable, money-spinning brands. Whole industries have developed around the sports that were once played for mere accolades.

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September 2015 ACCA: to sit or not to sit?

May 05 ,2015 | by Paul Merison

September 2015 ACCA: to sit or not to sit?

Later this year, ACCA will move to 4 sittings per year, with the first new sitting in September (not in all exam centres, so check the ACCA website for full details).

Naturally, a lot of students are asking me questions even now as they register for June 2015 classes and exams – so here is my best attempt to answer them.

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UK Elections: getting the balance right on business and social needs

UK Elections: getting the balance right on business and social needs

What can we say about the future relationship of business and society in the age of knowledge economy?

What is a business and does it have an obligation to society? This important question has sprung up once again, especially considering that 2015's General Election is just around the corner on May 7th.

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UK accountancy firm growth at highest levels since 2008

May 01 ,2015 | by Hari Sri

UK accountancy firm growth at highest levels since 2008

Statistics show that the number of new accountancy businesses is increasing at its fastest rate since the recession.

The accountancy profession is returning to a state last seen before the financial crisis, according to research from SJD Accountancy. The firm’s report showed the number of accountancy related startups increased at the fastest rate since 2008.

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Economists “more important” than analysts, suggests McKinsey

April 30 ,2015 | by Thiago Kiwi

Economists “more important” than analysts, suggests McKinsey

With businesses increasingly turning to economists when it comes to decision making, we explore the ins and outs of economics and analytics.

“Ignore economists at your peril” are the words of a McKinsey report that highlights the growing importance of seeking advice from economists. The use of economics has widened from being a tool to determine governmental and political policies, to something highly relevant to businesses.

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Social media – the ultimate job hunting tool?

April 30 ,2015 | by Claire Payne

Social media – the ultimate job hunting tool?

We investigate the ways social media can be used to your advantage when it’s time to join the search for employment.

Over the last decade social media has risen to the highest heights. From old favourites such as Facebook and Twitter, to the newly developed Bubblews and Sharebloc, there are hundreds of social media platforms to choose from. With so many options, it’s getting difficult to decide which are worth investing time into.

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How SMEs can find their place in a rapidly globalising world of business

How SMEs can find their place in a rapidly globalising world of business

In an increasingly globalised marketplace, companies must adjust to operating internationally. How does this changing economic landscape affect SMEs?

New customers are the key to the expansion of any organisation. And by capitalising on readily available new technologies, social media integration, web conferencing and e-commerce, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have the chance to reach more people than was ever possible before this digital boom.

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