Full List Of Stories
This Sunday's share tips were Funding Circle in the Sunday Times, SSP in the Sunday Telegraph and Ceres Power in the Mail on Sunday.
British shopping centres, DIY stores and garden centres struggled over the bank holiday weekend as shoppers stayed outside to enjoy the blazing sunshine. Indoor shopping centres were hit particularly hard, with a year-on-year decline in footfall of more than 11% on both Friday and Saturday, according to retail data company Springboard. - Observer.
The competition watchdog has called for the Big Four auditors to split their auditing and consulting operations to address "serious" issues in the disgraced accounting sector, but stopped short of calling for a full break-up. Deloitte, PwC, EY and KPMG, which audit 97pc of all FTSE 350 companies, have faced extensive criticism for failing to flag problems in the accounts of clients including Carillion, BHS and Patisserie Valerie before their collapse. - Telegraph.
Experimental early warning systems for the economy, devised by the Office for National Statistics and using VAT and road traffic data, have suggested that turnover at British companies may have weakened during the first quarter. The ONS said that its new index based on VAT returns had shown a “mixed picture”, with “very slightly more firms reporting a decline in turnover” between the first quarter of 2019 and the final quarter of 2018 than those posting an increase.
British businesses are the most gloomy they have been about Brexit since the 2016 referendum, with eight out of 10 finance leaders expecting the long-term business environment to be worse as a result of the UK leaving the EU. The accountancy group Deloitte has warned that worries over the long-term impact of Brexit are mounting, with more than half of finance bosses expecting to rein in recruitment and spending. - Guardian.
In this Sunday's round of share tips, Direct Line was the focus for the Sunday Times' Inside the City column, while Midas in the Mail on Sunday looked at Morses Club and IWG was examined by Questor in the Sunday Telegraph.
David Lidington, the cabinet minister overseeing cross-party Brexit talks with Labour, has insisted that there is now “more that unites than divides” the main parties, amid desperate attempts to find a breakthrough that avoids European elections that could prove disastrous for the Tories. His claims that the meetings had been “serious and constructive”, with large areas of agreement, comes as Theresa May and her team want to show progress as soon as possible, in a bid to avoid taking part in European elections late next month.
Theresa May has dispatched shattered MPs for a 10-day Easter recess, and urged them to use the time away from Westminster to “reflect on the decisions that will have to be made swiftly on our return,” after European Union leaders set 31 October as the new Brexit deadline. The prime minister addressed the House of Commons after her return from the late-night summit in Brussels at which EU27 leaders thrashed out an extension to article 50. - Guardian.
Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn were both facing a furious backlash from their parties last night amid growing scepticism over the prospects of their talks finding a way through Brexit. No 10 and Labour claimed initially that the leaders had had a “constructive” meeting after they spent an hour and 40 minutes in the Commons working through options. They agreed to set up a working party to meet today. - The Times.
Theresa May has offered to enter talks with Jeremy Corbyn to break the logjam over Brexit and let parliament decide a binding way forward if they fail to find a compromise. In a significant shift, May said she would request an extension to leaving the European Union and opened the door to accepting a softer Brexit, with No 10 not ruling out accepting either a customs union or a second referendum. - Guardian.
Theresa May will summon her warring cabinet to Downing Street for a five-hour showdown on Tuesday after parliament once again failed to coalesce behind any alternative to her rejected Brexit deal. Three options – a common market, a customs union and a second referendum – were all narrowly rejected in the process of indicative votes, prompting renewed talk of a swift general election. - Guardian.
Almost 2 million workers in the UK are in line for a pay rise on Monday as the legal minimum wage increases by nearly 5%. Adults on pay rates rebranded as the “national living wage” will receive a 4. 9% rise from £7. 83 to £8. 21 an hour, worth an extra £690 over a year and affecting around 1. 6 million people. - Guardian.
Britain faces another year in the European Union if MPs refuse to approve a central part of Theresa May’s deal during an emergency sitting of parliament today. On the date the country was due to leave the bloc, the Commons will be asked to vote in favour of a stripped-down version of the deal, consisting of only the withdrawal agreement. - The Times.
The EU has pencilled in April Fools’ Day 2020 as a leading option for Britain’s first day outside the bloc, should the UK government ask Brussels for a lengthy extension of article 50 in three weeks’ time, it can be revealed. The date was to be offered at the leaders’ summit last week if Theresa May had followed through on her promise to request a short extension in the event of passing her Brexit deal, and a longer one should it be rejected again by the House of Commons.
Parliament seized control of Brexit last night as three government ministers quit to give MPs the power to tear up Theresa May’s deal. The business minister Richard Harrington joined Alistair Burt and Steve Brine in effectively resigning as they joined 29 Tory MPs defying a three-line whip to defeat the government. - The Times.
Confidence in the UK’s financial services industry is falling at its fastest rate since the height of the 2008 crisis. Political uncertainty continues to “chip away” at the sector, threatening the City’s international standing, new research has claimed. Headcount has also fallen across businesses, meaning that overall employment within the sector has hit its lowest level for four years in March, according to a survey from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and accountancy giant PwC.
Share tips from Sunday newspapers, including Greencore in the Sunday Times and Law Debenture in the Mail on Sunday.
In one of the biggest demonstrations in British history, a crowd estimated at over one million people yesterday marched peacefully through central London to demand that MPs grant them a fresh referendum on Brexit. The Put it to the People march, which included protesters from all corners of the United Kingdom and many EU nationals living here, took place amid extraordinary political turmoil and growing calls on prime minister Theresa May to resign. - Observer.
No-deal contingency plans to safeguard medicine imports are set to be triggered on Wednesday, despite the potential delay to Brexit, with approved suppliers told to book space on the government’s emergency ferry service. Although the prime minister is to request an extension to article 50 which would postpone Britain’s departure from the EU, Whitehall will enact plans to ensure the flow of critical supplies should Dover be gridlocked after 29 March. - Guardian.
Theresa May secured the backing of some staunch Brexiteers for her deal after personally lobbying MPs but last night remained significantly short of the number she needs to win a vote this week. Esther McVey, the former work and pensions secretary who quit over Brexit, confirmed her support yesterday after hinting late last week that she could back the deal. - The Times.