Osborne’s post-Brexit plans, a mission to Jupiter and why tech support is purposely unbearable

UK chancellor wants to slash corporate tax rate to less than 15%

Listen to this article

00:00
00:00

Sign up to receive FirstFT by email here

George Osborne is planning to slash corporation tax to less than 15 per cent in an effort to woo business deterred from investing in a post-Brexit Britain as part of his new five-point plan to galvanise the economy.

In his first interview since Britain voted for Brexit, Mr Osborne said he wanted a leading role in shaping Britain’s new economic destiny, laying out plans to build a “super competitive economy” with low business taxes and a global focus.

But former World Trade Organisation chief Pascal Lamy warned in an interview with the BBC that wielding a tax weapon would be a bad way for the UK to start Brexit negotiations: “This will be seen on the continent as the start of the negotiation. And I’m quite convinced that at the end of the day, if you want a proper balanced win-win relationship in the future, starting with tax competition is not the right way psychologically to prepare this negotiation.” (FT, BBC)

In the news

Australia poll deadlock hits banks With more than three-quarters of votes counted, Malcolm Turnbull’s Liberal-National coalition is scrambling to win a slim majority in the lower house of parliament, with some analysts predicting a hung parliament. The opposition Labor party, which has pledged to hold a Royal Commission inquiry into an alleged “toxic culture” in Australian banking, has a chance of forming a minority government with the support of independents. Shares in Australia’s banks fell as investors reacted to the possibility of the inquiry. (FT)

Trump and the white supremacists It seems Donald Trump’s campaign has again received inspiration from neo-Nazis. All those who immediately saw something was off about the image Mr Trump tweeted on Saturday to call Hillary corrupt that included a Star of David were right to be suspicious: it appeared on a message board that is popular with white supremacists. (Slate)

Tesla’s missed targets The US electric car maker has missed its vehicle delivery targets for the third quarter in a row as it struggles with the production of its Model X crossover sport utility vehicle. (FT)

From Nato with love Lithuania has welcomed plans by the alliance to dispatch troops close to the Russian border as the beginning of a new policy of deterrence against Russia. President Dalia Grybauskaite said her country views Moscow as an increasing and unpredictable threat. (FT)

Iraq bomb toll rises The number of people killed in Sunday’s suicide bomb attack in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, has risen to 165, interior ministry officials have said. The government has declared three days of mourning after the huge blast, which injured 225 others, after a lorry packed with explosives was detonated while families were shopping for the end of Ramadan holiday. It is believed to be the deadliest single bomb attack in Iraq since 2007. (BBC)

Bangladesh restaurant attackers identified Dhaka reeled in shock as clues began to flood social media about the privileged backgrounds of the half-dozen attackers believed to have butchered 20 patrons of a restaurant during a bloody siege last week. The six attackers were killed when the army stormed the Holey Artisan Bakery to end an 11-hour siege early Saturday. The police declined to name the young men because nobody had shown up as of Sunday night to identify their bodies, but friends and relatives recognised photographs that were posted on a messaging app by Isis, along with praise for the violence. (NYT)

Troubled waters China’s military is planning exercises in the disputed South China Sea this week, adding to tensions ahead of an international tribunal’s ruling that is expected to challenge Beijing’s maritime claims in the area. The manoeuvres follow similar actions by the US Navy in the region in recent weeks. (WSJ)

It’s a big day for

Space exploration Nasa’s Juno spacecraft is expected to enter into orbit around Jupiter, ending a nearly five-year journey to the biggest planet in our solar system. (Space)

Food for thought

Let’s save the planet — again Now at last we have hard scientific evidence that the ban on CFCs has set the ozone layer on a path to recovery. Confirmation of success for one global treaty to keep pollutants out of the atmosphere will be useful ammunition in the current fight against climate change by imposing stringent limits on emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. (FT)

Airbnb and the prejudice of strangers Users with distinctly African-American names are roughly 16 per cent less likely to be accepted by Airbnb hosts than those with distinctively white names, according to a Harvard Business School survey. Some scent an opportunity to lure minorities into taking their business elsewhere, but the issue also raises wider questions about the legal regulation underpinning the sharing economy, writes Jonathan Ford. (FT)

Why tech support is purposely unbearable Does calling tech support have a tendency to push you over the edge? Well, you’re not alone. Getting caught in the loop (waiting on hold, interacting with automated systems, finding yourself on hold again) is a type of aggravation that experts say can provoke rage even among the most mild-mannered. Worse still, companies know what they’re doing. (NYT)

Mind your multitasking Cramming myriad activities into your morning, and constantly switching between them, is probably making you very tired. Juggling jobs uses up oxygenated glucose in the brain, running down the same fuel that powers productivity, say neuroscientists. (Quartz)

‘There is no celebration without wine’ Or so said Pope Francis recently when recounting a biblical passage during which Jesus Christ saves a party by turning water into wine. And apparently the Catholic Church practices what it preaches: the Vatican City has the highest per capita wine consumption in the world, with each of its 842 residents consuming 74 litres a year. (Daily Beast)

Video of the day

Trump woos Democrats in faded steel town Lou Mavrakis, the mayor of Monessen, a heavily Democratic city in western Pennsylvania, is just one of the residents who plans to vote for Donald Trump because establishment politicians have failed to help the decayed former industrial heartland of America. Demetri Sevastopulo reports. (FT)

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2017. All rights reserved. You may share using our article tools. Please don't copy articles from FT.com and redistribute by email or post to the web.