Bulgaria’s hopes of becoming the next member of the eurozone have been dealt a blow by the European Central Bank which has warned the EU’s poorest country has made minimal progress in joining the euro club.
Russian government agencies have begun “closely studying” the output of British media outlets operating in the country, its foreign ministry has said, vowing a “tough” response to new investigations by UK media regulator Ofcom into television channel Russia Today.
Emmanuel Macron has fulfilled a key campaign promise to finally get France back into line with EU budget rules, after the European Commission recommended that the country’s “excessive deficit procedure” be closed.
Major eurozone economies have cast further doubt on the expected bounceback of the region’s manufacturing sector after a drab first quarter, as a set of closely-watched surveys of sentiment in the sector showed persistent pessimism among business managers.
The deepening sell-off in the Turkish lira accelerated in early European trading, falling sharply to nearly 5 to the dollar on Wednesday, sparking a call for Turkey’s top economic officials to stand up to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
M&S rebranded as Markle & Sparkle last weekend, presumably in the hope some of the royal wedding glitz would rub off. On Tuesday morning M&S shares got some of that spangle as they climbed as much as 6 per cent despite a somewhat downbeat set of annual results.
French businesses felt the wind go out of their sails in May, with confidence dipping as private sector output growth fell to its weakest point since the start of 2017, according to the latest survey by IHS Markit.
Marks and Spencer has been serving up a new sandwich this week — of the news, rather than the prawn mayonnaise, variety. And, in doing so, it has followed a classic recipe: insert a piece of bad news between two slices of supposedly good news, to make everything seem more palatable. Hence, Monday began with the appointment of two highly-qualified new female directors; but Tuesday brought details of more than 40 additional store closures; then today topped it off with full-year results showing transformation under way — and a tasty maintained dividend.
Restaurant Group, the owner of Frankie & Benny’s and Chiquito, blamed bad weather at the start of 2018 for another fall in sales, as a difficult trading environment continues to bite casual dining chains.
Great Portland Estates has swung back to a full-year profit after the impact of the Brexit vote turned out to be less immediately damaging than it had feared, though the West End property developer is still mindful of a potential drag from messy UK politics.