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Sharp slowdown in house price growth in 2017, Halifax says

House prices grew much more slowly in 2017 than in the previous year, the UK’s largest mortgage lender has reported. The Halifax said prices rose by 2.7% in 2017 – compared with a 6.5% increase in 2016. On a calendar year basis, that is the lowest rise since 2012.The …

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Mothercare warns on profits as sales fall

Baby goods retailer Mothercare has issued a profit warning after reporting a big fall in sales over the crucial Christmas trading period.Like-for-like sales fell 7.2% year-on-year, while online sales fell 6.9%.The retailer said it had reduced its total number of stores and discounted heavily in its end-of-season sale.It does …

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UK firms optimistic for 2018 despite Brexit fears

British manufacturers’ optimism about the state of the global economy is at a four-year high, a survey has revealed. The poll by the manufacturers’ organisation EEF found 40% of factories are planning for growth in their industry this year compared to 19% who are forecasting a decline. Sales are …

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'Divorce Day' as money worries drive couples apart

If you’re married then it might be best to tread carefully today which has been dubbed “divorce day” by lawyers. The first working Monday of the year after the festive period typically sees a rise in couples feeling disillusioned about their relationships.It’s when some married couples make enquiries about …

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Winter Olympics targeted by hackers says security firm

Hackers have attempted to steal sensitive data from groups involved with next month’s Winter Olympics, cyber-security firm McAfee said. The report found malware-infected emails were sent last month to organisations linked to the Pyeongchang Games.It did not identify those responsible, but said more attacks tied to the upcoming Olympics …

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Grenfell inquiry cuts ties with KPMG amid concerns

The Grenfell Tower inquiry has cancelled its contract with auditors KPMG after concerns were raised about potential conflicts of interest. The accountancy firm has previously been involved with Celotex, the company which supplied Grenfell Tower’s cladding, as well as the Rydon Group, the lead contractor in the buildings renovation …

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Rail strikes: Workers at five train firms walk out

Rail passengers are facing three days of disruption as workers at five rail companies stage go on strike in separate disputes over staffing, driver-only operation and guards. Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) at South Western Railway (SWR), Arriva Rail North (Northern), Merseyrail and Greater Anglia are staging 24-hour …

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