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British Gas owner Centrica cuts thousands of jobs

Scaling back of energy company’s business comes despite a doubling in profits at residential power supply business

Centrica is to cut 6,000 jobs, slash gas exploration and sell off its wind farms in a dramatic restructuring ordered by its new boss and former BP executive, Iain Conn.

The move comes despite a doubling in profits at its British Gas residential power supply business in the first half of the year despite a further 45,000 customers being lost to rivals along the way.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

BT television boosted by sports channel screening Uefa Champions League

In first-quarter results BT says TV section is at two-year high, with new channel BT Sport Europe set to go live on Saturday

The impending arrival of a new sports channel featuring Uefa Champions League and Europa League games has boosted BT’s television business.

The company said its TV section is at a two-year high after 60,000 customers were added in the three months to the end of June.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

Rolls-Royce profits cut in half as jet engine demand plummets

Engineering firm announces pre-tax profits are down by 57% to £310m in the first half as company moves towards more fuel-efficient engines

The new boss of Rolls-Royce has pledged to make the defence and aerospace group simpler and faster after it reported that profits have slumped by more than half.

The FTSE 100 engineer said that pre-tax profits fell by 57% to £310m in the six months to 30 June as it suffered from falling demand for its jet engines.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

RBS expects further fines with no let-up from regulators

Burden of compensation and fines will delay resumption of dividend payments, chairman Sir Philip Hampton says

Royal Bank of Scotland warned of a “noisy” 2015 as the bailed-out bank was hit by £1.3bn of charges for fines and compensation payouts to customers in the first half of the year.

Sir Philip Hampton, presiding over his last set of results after being chairman since the 2008 bailout, said the bank faced more hurdles because of the higher than expected fines imposed by regulators around the world.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

Man sues Etihad over back injury from sitting next to obese passenger

James Andres Bassos tells Queensland court he was forced to contort his body on a flight from Sydney to Dubai while sitting next to an obese passenger who coughed a lot

A man is suing an airline, claiming he got a back injury after being forced to sit next to an obese man who coughed a lot.

James Andres Bassos has taken Etihad Airways to court in Queensland, Australia, saying he was forced to twist and contort his body for long periods on a flight in 2011 from Sydney to Dubai.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

Senior executives urge parliament to prioritise third runway at Heathrow

Business leaders want positive response to Airports Commission verdict, saying expansion is key to long-term prosperity and future growth of UK economy

Business leaders have called on the prime minister to give a swift green light to Heathrow expansion and to timetable a parliamentary vote on a third runway by next summer.

In an open letter, more than 50 prominent names, including Sir Martin Sorrell, Lord Simon Wolfson and Sir Mike Rake, have thrown their weight behind the Airports Commission’s verdict that a new runway is needed at Heathrow, and demanded “a swift and positive response” to the report delivered earlier this month.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

Treasury to tackle firms hitting retirees with huge fees for withdrawing funds

Consultation to include a cap on excessive early exit charges affecting people seeking to take advantage of new pension freedoms

The Treasury is to outline plans to tackle rogue pension companies that have been applying punitive charges to over-55s trying to take advantage of the government’s new pension freedoms.

On Thursday, a cap on excessive early exit charges for those looking to cash in their pension savings will be set out in a consultation paper. The Treasury will also look at how pensioners and industry experts can remove other barriers that may be stopping people enjoying the benefits of increased flexibility over their pension pot.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

Sainsbury's sells pharmacy business to Celesio in £125m deal

Sale will see owners of Lloyds Pharmacy chain take over all 281 branches and comes the week after the supermarket group raised £550m through bond issues

Sainsbury’s has sold its 281-store pharmacy business to Celesio, the owner of the Lloyds Pharmacy chain, for £125m.

Under the deal, Lloyds will rent out and run Sainsbury’s 277 in-store pharmacies and take over four located in hospitals. Up to 2,500 Sainsbury’s pharmacy staff will transfer to Lloyds.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS

Facebook's second-quarter earnings call points toward focus on video content

Company’s second-quarter earnings were better than expected – its ad business was up 43% – and its stock rallied after initial slump in after-hours trading

You’ll be seeing a lot more video on Facebook in the near future, and your musings will be easier to access. CEO Mark Zuckerberg told investors on Wednesday’s second-quarter earnings call that “connecting people with more great video content is an important part” of the company’s future, and the company will improve its searchability – Facebook has already indexed some 2tn posts.

Users had sent out some 40% more videos to their lists of friends and followers, Zuckerberg said, and the company was encouraging them to share still more. (Facebook’s own video advertising is more valuable per advertisement than its text and image ads.) “This quarter we updated our newsfeed ranking to help people see more videos they care about,” Zuckerberg said.

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Source: The Guardian Circular Economy RSS