Whitbread: Please make a fuss next time you opt for a break up like the one you're planning with Costa Coffee

We in the City could do with the work. Second and third homes don't pay for themselves you know!
Dear Alison Brittain, Adam Crozier and the other members of the Whitbread board,
First, congratulations on the decision to spin off Costa Coffee into a separate company, and on your latest results which no one will pay any attention to as a result.
We love the idea, because it will generate a lot of work for us and right now any work is welcome.
Read more Costa to be split from Premier Inn within two years, owner confirms Coffee cups: major chains fail to match Costa’s recycling targets Costa launches ‘chatter and natter’ tables to help combat loneliness As we’re sure you're only too well aware, the government has been seized by a bunch of lunatics and they seem hell bent on kicking us in the guts with the way they’re going about cutting the country off from Europe, the biggest market for its goods and services.
Or course, you have a supply chain to worry about, so you’..

Boohoo profits rise as sales at PrettyLittleThing jump 228%

Online retailer said customer numbers increased by 22 per cent over the year
Online fashion retailer Boohoo has reported surging full-year sales and profits as it reaps the rewards of successful acquisitions.
Shares jumped 16 per cent in early trading, after the group reported a 97 per cent increase in revenue to £579.8m in the year to February 28 as pre-tax profit rose 40 per cent to £43.3m.
Growth was helped by the recently acquired PrettyLittleThing, which clocked up a 228 per cent rise in sales to £181.3m.
Read more Boohoo launches capsule collection for men Joint bosses Mahmud Kamani and Carol Kane said the results had been achieved against the “backdrop of difficult trading in the UK clothing sector”.
They added: “The group made great progress during the year, integrating a new company, PrettyLittleThing, and a new brand, Nasty Gal, into the boohoo group.
“Revenue from boohoo continued to grow strongly, whilst there has been an exceptional performance from PrettyLittleTh..

Costa to be separated from Premier Inn within two years, owner Whitbread confirms

Following weeks of speculation, the group has confirmed it will demerge the coffee chain
The Costa coffee chain will be spun off from its owner, Whitbread, within the next two years, the group revealed on Wednesday.
Shares in Whitbread rose at the open after the company confirmed that it would demerge the high street cafe business and retain control of hotel chain Premier Inn, following weeks of speculation.
Read more Coffee cups: major chains fail to match Costa’s recycling targets Costa launches ‘chatter and natter’ tables to help combat loneliness Now activists want Costa cut free of Whitbread Earlier this month, it emerged that activist investor Elliott Advisors had built up a stake of more than 6 per cent of Whitbread, enabling it to apply more pressure on the group to split Costa off, on the basis that both Costa and Premier Inn would do better as more focused individual businesses.
In a statement to the London Stock Exchange, Whitbread said it is “confident” that Costa ..

Lloyds Bank profits rise 23% as lender cuts jobs and branches

Shares in the lender edged down Wednesday morning
Lloyds Banking Group has reported a 23 per cent increase in profits to £1.6bn in the first quarter of the year, weeks after announcing another round of branch closures and job cuts.
The lender posted a 4 per cent increase in net income for the three months to 31 March, from £4.18bn this time last year to £4.33bn, while earnings per share rose 36 per cent to 1.5p from 1.1p.
Read more Lloyds Banking Group to cut 305 jobs and close 49 branches across UK Lloyds rakes in billions, but how much is too much? Lloyds posts largest annual profit in over a decade “In the first three months of 2018 we have again delivered strong financial performance with increased profits and returns, a significantly reduced gap between underlying and statutory profit and a strong increase in capital. These results continue to demonstrate the strength of our business model,” said chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio.
“The UK economy continues to be resilien..

Fraud against small businesses has cost 50,000 UK jobs, new study shows

Almost one in four SMEs has fallen victim to fraud
Fraud against small businesses has led to the loss of up to 50,000 UK jobs, according to research by Barclays.
A study carried out by YouGov on behalf of the bank found that 44 per cent of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) had been targeted by fraudsters and almost one in four (23 per cent) had fallen victim to fraud.
Read more UK consumers at risk of fraud because British bank security 'lagging' The study showed 10.6 per cent of all SMEs surveyed had suffered a cyber-attack, with 8.58 per cent of those making staff redundant to cover the cost of cybercrime. Based on a total of 5.687m small businesses in the UK, that equates to 52,120 jobs lost.
The average cost of fraud to a business was £35,000, which means the total cost could be up to £40bn to date.
Ian Rand, chief executive of Barclays Business Banking, said: “Fraudsters are targeting hard-working entrepreneurs, in some cases impersonating suppliers and..

Charles Zwick, Who Balanced Budget Under Johnson, Dies at 91

Charles Zwick, Who Balanced Budget Under Johnson, Dies at 91 Photo Charles J. Zwick, left, with Brig. Gen. Paul L. Barton of the Air Force in 1961, when Mr. Zwick was a researcher for the RAND Corporation in Santa Monica, Calif. Credit RAND Corporation Charles J. Zwick, who as President Lyndon B. Johnson’s last budget director helped engineer the only federal surplus posted within a span of nearly four decades, died on Friday at his home in Coral Gables, Fla. He was 91.
The cause was cancer, his wife, Barbara, said.
In 1968, Mr. Zwick faced a clamor among congressional conservatives for cutbacks in Great Society social-welfare programs. But he also had to contend with Johnson’s demands to safeguard that agenda and relieve the continuing budgetary pressures imposed by the Vietnam War.
Mr. Zwick managed to reconcile these competing forces with an income tax surcharge.
“When you couldn’t support both guns and butter without an increase in taxes, then you were in trouble,” Mr. Zwick said i..

Gig economy union saves outsourced cleaners at EY from redundancy after protests

Workers had been told last month they faced job cuts and cuts to hours before company u-turned
A union for gig economy workers has scored a victory by saving the jobs of workers who cleaned the London offices of accountancy firm EY.
A group of 65 cleaners contracted through outsourcing company ISS, were told last month that some would lose their jobs and others may be given reduced hours aimed at achieving “operational effectiveness and financial efficiency”.
ISS, which posted revenues of £9.4bn last year, said it had agreed these changes with EY.
Read more Gig economy union files £200,000 holiday pay claim against CitySprint Following action by the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB), ISS wrote to the workers on Monday night telling them that it had cancelled the planned redundancies and reduction in hours. The company also thanked the staff and their appointed representatives for their professionalism.
The u-turn came after IWGB staged two protests, the first ..

Economic Scene: The Facebook Fallacy: Privacy Is Up to You

The Facebook Fallacy: Privacy Is Up to You Photo Tourists at Facebook’s headquarters on April 10, the day its chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, testified at a Senate hearing. Researchers say his pledge to give users more say over the use of their data is undercut by a phenomenon known as the “control paradox.” Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times Was Mark Zuckerberg pulling their leg?
As Facebook’s co-founder and chief executive parried questions from members of Congress about how the social network would protect its users’ privacy, he returned time and again to what probably sounded like an unimpeachable proposition.
By providing its users with greater and more transparent controls over the personal data they share and how it is used for targeted advertising, he insisted, Facebook could empower them to make their own call and decide how much privacy they were willing to put on the block.
He must be kidding.
As Mr. Zuckerberg surely knows, providing a greater sense of control over thei..

UK breaks coal free energy record again but renewables still need more support

Fossil fuels benefit from high hidden subsidies. A change in approach is needed to curb them
Today is the fourth the UK has entered with not a watt of electricity generated by coal.
It’s the longest such streak since the 1880s and comes only days after the last modern era record of 55 hours was set.
That represents good news for those of us who have children and would rather like there to be a planet for them to live on when we’re gone.
Read more National Grid profit warning after £140m hit from extreme weather Wind power provides 44% extra energy to National Grid National Grid ends gas supply warning. Long term we need to use less Coal generated power is dirty power, and not just through the carbon that gets pumped into the atmosphere when it burns.
The fact that the UK is increasingly able to call upon cleaner alternatives for its requirements, to the extent that records are being regularly broken, is a welcome development.
The trouble is one of those alternatives is gas..