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Weekly newspaper updateBack

FTThe Financial Times

Carmakers chase consumers in drive to boost sales – It is based inside a shopping centre, displays only three vehicles, employs no trained salesmen and is staffed mainly by women. Welcome to the car dealership of the future. Hyundai… has chosen a small retail until wedged between the Bodyshop and the Disney store at Kent’s Bluewater shopping centre for its latest outlet as it seeks to capture the eyes of potential customers wandering around.

Cash entry Start-ups seek licence to take on biggest banks – Nazzim Ishaque’s idea for a new retail bank in the UK is moving closer to becoming a reality. Lintel Bank, his blueprint for a “challenger” to the biggest high street lenders, among a number of start-ups seeking banking licence from the financial watchdog. Using online, phone services, a few branches and “cutting edge” technology., Mr Ishaque plans to offer a range for products from current accounts and mortgages to loans for small and medium-sized businesses.

The Times

Insurance companies run for cover as thieves target new Range Rovers – High-end motor insurers are refusing to insure new Range Rovers in London after a series of thefts… The problem has grown so rapidly in the past three months that insurers are insurance brokers have asked to meet Jaguar Land River to discuss the issue.

Diesel drivers face £24-a-day London charge Drivers of almost all existing diesel cars will have to pay £24 a day to enter central London from 2020 under plans to reduce deaths caused by pollution. Boris Johnson, the mayor of London, yesterday announced plans for a £12.50 levy on any car entering the congestion charge zone that failed to meet new pollutions standards. The charge, which will apply at all times, will be on top of the £11.50 congestion charge. The Ultra Low Emission Zone may extended to over the whole of London from 2025, and local authorities in other areas with high pollution are considering similar schemes. People living inside the congestion charge zone will be exempt for three years.

Biggest leap in retail sales in three years – Retailers reported the biggest jump in years since 2011 between August and October and are optimistic about he future despite wage growth continuing to trail behind inflation. In its monthly health check of companies across Britain, the CVI found that sales grew for the third month in a row in October, while the three-month moving average of sales growth was plus 33 per cent, the highest since February 2011. Companies were also optimistic about the future, with 46 per cent of retailers expecting sales volumes to increase in the year to November, while 15 per cent said they anticipated a fall, giving an overall balance of plus 31 per cent.

Car insurance picks up – LV = became the latest big company in motor insurance to say it had spotted signs of prices rising over the past few months as it reported a 4.4 per cent drop in gross written premiums to £1.08 billion for the nine months to the end of September. The mutually owned insure said that it had written £743million of premiums in the motor market during the nine-month period, down from £835 million.

Rates lower for longer, says Bank Deputy – The deputy governor of the Bank of England has come out in favour of keeping interest rates lower for longer, pushing the prospect of the first rise before Christmas further off the table.

Retailers demand business rates review – The British Retail Consortium has urged the chancellor to commit to reviewing business rates when he delivers his Autumn Statement on December 3. It said that a commitment from the government could help employers to create jobs and invest in their businesses.

The Independent

More dangerous lorry drivers on UK roads – Shadow transport minister Richard Burden has warned that the number of dangerous lorries on Britain’s roads is on the rise. He obtained figures showing that the number of roadside checks on HGVs has dropped by more than a third since the coalition came to power in 2010.

MPC minutes point to interest rates staying on hold – Expectations that UK interest rates will note rise in the near future have been boosted by a dovish set of Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee minutes showing the majority of members are far from convinced by the case for an early increase.

The Daily Telegraph

Caterham ‘owes Renault £7.4m – Renault has been revealed to be the biggest creditor of the car manufacturer Caterham Sports, which collapsed into administration last week. Caterham owes a total of £16.2m with Renault alone due £7.4m, according to legal documents.

Extend business rates discount, say retailers – The retail industry is pressing the Chancellor to extend the £1.1bn discount on business rates he announced in last year’s Autumn Statement. Business rates are due to rise by another 2.3pc next April – an increased set by the rate of RPI inflation in September – but the British Retail Consortium wants George Osborne to cap this increase at 2pc.

The Guardian

Drink-drive limit lowered in Scotland – Scotland is to reduce its drink-driving limit from December 5, with motorists advised not to get behind the wheel if they have drunk any alcohol at all. The reduction from 80mg to 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood means that drivers could be breaking the law if they have drunk a small glass of wine or single pint of beer. The change brings Scotland into line with Northern Ireland and most of Europe. The Scottish parliament had voted in favour of cutting the drink-drive limit two years ago, but implementation of the new law was delayed by administrative backlogs at Westminster.

The Sun

Car trade rules set – The Government has announced that the second hand car trade will be better regulated after it asked the Used Car Commission to investigate the market and implement its findings. This included closer police and trading standards cooperation, minimum requirements for second hand cars and more detail about them. The AA estimates that 750,000 buyers a year face unresolved problems

Daily Mail

Is the end of the road for spare tyres – There was a time when a flat tyre meant a rapid rummage around the boot of your car for a spare. But manufacturers are no longer so keen to provide traditional spares – and the move has led to a huge rise in call-outs to deal with punctures in just four years research reveals today. Nine out of ten new vehicles are now sold without a full-size spare wheel as standard, according to the car website Instead more than a quarter – 27 per cent – are fitted with the ‘space-saver’ tyre, which cannot be used for long distances.

Daily Express

Cost of fuel at its lowest for nearly 4 years – Petrol at the pumps is cheaper than at any time since January 2011, the AA report. But drivers are waned the road to recovery is “rocky and uncertain”. The AA said that on Monday petrol across the UK was an average 124.93p a litre, down more than 0.75p over the weekend. Diesel is also at its lowest since January 2011 and now averages 129.15p a litre. The figures do not include the effect of supermarkets cutting fuel prices by up to 2p a litre from today.

Posted by Sue Robinson on 31/10/2014