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  2. Hammond signals Brexit deal dividend
  3. European and Asian markets rebound
  4. Patisserie Valerie teeters on brink of collapse…
  5. And the cafe chain’s finance chief is arrested
  6. Branson halts $1bn Saudi investment talks

Live Reporting

By Daniel Thomas and Dearbail Jordan

  1. Copyright: Patisserie Holdings

    Chris Marsh and Luke Johnson, the chairman and largest shareholder in Patisserie Holdings, go way back.

    Mr Marsh, who was arrested and bailed last night, has been finance director of Patisserie Holdings, owner of Patisserie Valerie, since 2006 when Luke Johnson acquired the cake and cafe chain.

    He was also appointed as finance director of FishWorks in 2007 when Mr Johnson and entrepreneur Gary Ashworth bought a stake in the restaurant group.

    He resigned from that role in 2008.

  2. Down the cake hole for Patisserie Valerie?

  3. BlackRock to manage Lloyds assets after row

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Lloyds Banking Group has chosen BlackRock to manage £30bn worth of assets owned by its Scottish Widows life insurance business.

    The group also said it was near to finalising management arrangements for a further £80bn in assets and would update the market in due course.

    It follows a row between Lloyds and fund house Standard Life Aberdeen, which had previously managed the assets.

    Earlier this year Lloyds withdrew the portfolio from SLA, which is also an insurer, citing “competition concerns”. It later offloaded its 3.3% stake in SLA, too.

    At the time, SLA said the fund house did not believe it was in “material competition with Lloyds”, however it did not reach the second round of bidding when Lloyd’s re-tendered the job.

  4. Beijing reconsiders free trade pact with Asia-Pacific nations

    Copyright: Getty Images

    The US pulled out last year from the pact, which was formerly known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

    A group of eleven Asia-Pacific countries salvaged the pact however and renamed it the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

    By potentially joining the CPTPP, Beijing would be able to boost its role in free trade, and strengthen its position against US President Donald Trump’s protectionist “America first” strategy, the SCMP report says.

    The trade pact covers a market of nearly 500 million people, despite the US pullout

    Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam are members of the CPTPP.

  5. Copyright: Getty Images

    Like European stock markets, oil prices have also staged a moderate rebound on Friday.

    Brent crude is up 1.31% at $81.31 a barrel while West Texas Intermediate is ahead 1.28% at $71.88.

    New data showed that China’s daily crude oil imports in September hit the highest level since May.

    Looking ahead for the oil market, analysts at ANZ said: “We still estimate oil demand growing at 1.2 million to 1.5 million barrels per day for this year, and see the risk of a slowdown in 2019 if trade tension escalates.”

  6. BreakingPatisserie Valerie finance chief arrested

    Patisserie Valerie has announced that its finance chief Chris Marsh, who is currently suspended, was arrested by the police last night and has been released on bail.

  7. Budget 2018: Tax rises ‘likely’

    BBC economics editor Kamal Ahmed tweets:

  8. Copyright: Getty Images

    After two days of slump, European markets followed Asia higher on Friday, although the extent of the rebound varied across the region.

    Connor Campbell of Spreadex says: “Having been one of the heaviest hit indices on Thursday, at least in terms of its European peers, the FTSE posted the weakest comeback, rising just 0.3%.

    Part of the reason is the continued strength of sterling, he says, which rose another 0.1% against the dollar to hit a fresh three-week high.

    Over in the Eurozone the rebound was a bit more substantial, he says.

    “The DAX (in Germany) found itself up 100 points after the bell, taking it back above 11,650 having struck 11,400 on Thursday; the CAC 40, meanwhile, jumped 0.7% to hit 5,150.”

  9. Copyright: Getty Images

    DCC, the FTSE 100 sales and marketing group, is leading the blue chip risers on Friday morning, with its share price up 2.97% to £64.15.

    Tobacco business Imperial Brands is the largest faller so far, down 1% £26.52.

    The wider FTSE 100 is up 0.47% at 7,040.15.

    A third quarter update from hedge fund giant Man Group sent its shares up 5.84% to 152.78p on the FTSE 250.

    The FTSE 250 is up 0.89% at 18,996.05.

  10. Video content

    Video caption: The chancellor says Brexit talks are running smoother and there could be an economic boost

    The Chancellor, Philip Hammond, says pace is picking up on the Brexit talks and a deal could deliver a boost to the economy.

  11. Have your say: Kanye – good for business?

    BBC World News presenter Maryam Moshiri tweets:

  12. HMRC ‘issued Patisserie Valerie notice last month’

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Julie Palmer of Begbies Traynor says that a “winding-up petition” by HMRC was filed against a main subsidiary of Patisserie Valerie over of debt of £1.14m on 14 September.

    Winding up petitions are precursors to court orders that force an insolvent company into administration.

    “So they’ve had 21 days to deal with that before HMRC has advertised it on 5 October,” Ms Palmer says.

    “There is a whole sequence of events here where we’re talking about a listed company which until Wednesday was worth over £400m.

    “It is actually quite staggering that [the winding-up petition] has happened without any notification to the stock market and I believe even the board said they weren’t even aware this had been served on the company.”

  13. After Thursday’s 2% drop, the FTSE 100 opened 3.71 points higher at 7,010.64.

    Meanwhile, the FTSE 250 is up 0.87% at 18,992.38.

  14. Hammond: The right Brexit deal could ease public spending cuts

    Mr Hammond has also told reporters that the right Brexit deal would allow him to craft a Budget that eases public spending cuts, keeps the burden of debt falling and taxes low.

    Speaking on the sidelines of the IMF conference in Bali, the chancellor said: “If we are successful in negotiating that package, there will be an upside dividend in terms of the economy and, consequently, the fiscal numbers, so that’s the first bonus.

    “The second bonus is that I’ve been holding a slightly larger fiscal buffer than would otherwise be necessary because of the degree of uncertainty that exists at the moment.

    “As that uncertainty is unwound and we’re in more favourable circumstances, logically, one would need less of a fiscal buffer and some of that could be released to support the spending envelope or to deliver tax cuts.”

  15. Hammond: Brexit deal in sight

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Philip Hammond has said he believes a Brexit deal is now in sight and that the right agreement could lead to a dividend for the UK finances.

    The chancellor told the BBC he had always been optimistic a deal would be reached, but there had been a “really important step change” in the last 10 days.

    “If we are able to get to a good deal for Britain, then I believe there will be a deal dividend for us,” he added.

    He said current economic forecasts were based on a “midway point” between thee being no-deal and an “EEA solution”. However, he said the deal the UK was currently trying to negotiate would “represent an improvement” over these predictions.

    This should deliver us an “upside” in the form of higher economic growth than previously expected, he said.

  16. Asian growth could shrink through trade tensions – IMF

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Ongoing trade tensions could slash Asia’s economic growth by up to 0.9 percentage points in coming years, the International Monetary Fund has said.

    This is because other countries won’t be able to compensate fully for disruption to supply chains in China and the US, it said.

    The IMF also warned that the market rout seen in emerging economies could worsen if the US Federal Reserve and other major central banks tightened monetary policy more quickly than expected.

    This would cause “negative spillovers” to Asia through reduced capital flows and higher funding costs, it said.

  17. How soon is now for Patisserie Valerie?

    Does that mean now or in a few days?

    Julie Palmer, regional managing partner at restructuring firm Begbies Traynor, says: “I think they probably do mean now not least because of HMRC. They are owed just over £1m, they’ve actually advertised a winding up petition against the company.

    “If the company is going to continue in its current guise that money needs paying and potentially money for a queue of creditors who will be lining up behind that.”

  18. House of Fraser buys ‘iconic’ Glasgow building

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Image caption: The Frasers building on Buchanan Street

    House of Fraser has acquired the freehold to one of its flagship stores in Glasgow, trumpeting its intention to create the “Harrods of the North”.

    Owner Sports Direct said it had bought the Frasers building on Buchanan Street for £95m from Glasgow City Council.

    Sports Direct bought House of Fraser out of administration in August, vowing at the time to save 47 of its 59 stores.

    The firm said it would continue to operate the “iconic” Frasers site and invest in enhancing it.

  19. Sir Richard Branson statement on Saudi journalist

    Copyright: Getty Images

    “I had high hopes for the current government in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its leader Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and it is why I was delighted to accept two directorships in the tourism projects around the Red Sea. I felt that I could give practical development advice and also help protect the precious environment around the coastline and islands.

    “What has reportedly happened in Turkey around the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, if proved true, would clearly change the ability of any of us in the West to do business with the Saudi Government. We have asked for more information from the authorities in Saudi and to clarify their position in relation to Mr Khashoggi.

    “While those investigations are ongoing and Mr Khashoggi’s whereabouts are not known, I will suspend my directorships of the two tourism projects. Virgin will also suspend its discussions with the Public Investment Fund over the proposed investment in our space companies Virgin Galactic and Virgin Orbit.”