Loophole gives £85m to owners of second homes

Second home owners who have registered their properties as businesses are set to land an £85million windfall from the Government’s small business grant scheme.  Experts said the loophole allows the owners of second homes – many of which are registered in Devon, Cornwall, the Lake District and in seaside towns …

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EasyJet may have to raise more money from shareholders

EasyJet faces having to raise more money from shareholders next year to repair its finances, industry experts say.  Andrew Lobbenberg, an analyst at HSBC, said the airline could raise cash by issuing more shares to investors or by offering them so-called convertible bonds – loans that can be turned into …

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Banks clash with Boris Johnson over tower blocks

Banks and the Government are at loggerheads over plans to let homeowners sell flats in low-rise blocks without having a cladding survey.  Homeowners in buildings under 18 metres – the height reached by fire engine hoses – have been blocked from selling their flats unless they carry out a so-called External …

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Asset manager Columbia Threadneedle shuts former £1bn fund

Asset manager Columbia Threadneedle is shutting a UK fund that held more than £1billion of investors’ money at its peak.  The UK Absolute Alpha fund will close after a tough four years in which investors headed for the door.  The fund has shrunk from more than £1billion in 2016 before …

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HAMISH MCRAE: Five reasons to shrug off gloom

This is a time of huge uncertainty. When that happens the thing to do is bolt down what we know, be frank about what we don’t, and then make a cool judgment about the most likely ways forward.  Start with last week’s spending announcement by the Chancellor.  We know that …

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How to challenge an unfair lockdown penalty

Lockdown in England ends on Wednesday, but it will not put a stop to the fines that can be issued to those who break coronavirus rules. Since March, at least 20,000 penalties of £100 or more have been handed out – an average of more than 500 a week. And …

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MIDAS SHARE TIPS: Back Greensleeves care homes bond

The Women’s Royal Voluntary Service was formed just before the Second World War to help civilians cope with wartime life – and Princess Elizabeth, the future Queen, became its patron.  It spread into many different areas over the next few decades, including homes for elderly women in search of company …

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How Britain recorded a record day for internet use last Saturday

Last weekend marked a virtual Super Saturday: there was a record 24 hours for internet usage in the UK. From 10.35am on Saturday 21 November to the same time the next day, TalkTalk customers used 41.2million gigabytes of data, driven largely by streaming, which has now spread across most multimedia …

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