Stock markets have retreated again over worries of further US interest rate rises after the Federal Reserve defied Donald Trump to increase rates for the fourth time this year.

The EU has confirmed it is “actively investigating” a potential breach of its diplomatic communications network, following reports that secret cables had been stolen by hackers.

The Bank of England has welcomed a “crucial and positive” move by the EU to help keep a key part of the financial system functioning in the event of a “no-deal” Brexit.

A handful of banks will be forced to write multimillion pound cheques to buy shares in the construction giant Kier Group after some of its biggest investors snubbed the chance to take part in a £250m fundraising.

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is to merge its consumer healthcare unit with that of rival Pfizer, to create a new market leader with almost £10bn in annual sales.

 

Santander has been fined more than £30m for “serious failings” in processing the accounts of dead customers, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) says.

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Central London holding strong despite worst property market since 2010

Central London holding up despite worst property market since 2010

Despite the worst UK housing market for any October in eight years, Central London is defying trends with its most expensive districts still going for extremely high prices

Tentative signs of a rebound in some of the capital’s most expensive districts saw asking prices for homes in inner London climb 2.4% from September to an average $1.1mn (£625,064), according to property website Rightmove.

In Britain as a whole, values rose 1%–the smallest gain for the month since 2010. The increase in part reflects the seasonal pickup in the market after the summer, though there is still plenty to be worried about.

A report from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors last week found a subdued market and significant caution among potential buyers. In broader terms, demand for homes is weakening after a three-decade boom pushed them to levels that are unaffordable for most.

Tax changes are affecting landlords and there is a lot of economic uncertainty surrounding the nation’s future leadership with the European Union.

“This year has a more subdued narrative,” said Miles Shipside, director at Rightmove.

On an annual basis, UK home values increased 0.9% to an average £307,245, Rightmove said on Monday. London was down 1.1%.

Rightmove’s monthly index, which isn’t seasonally adjusted, consisted of asking prices of more than 110,000 homes representing roughly 90% of the UK market.

The properties were put on sale between September 9 and October 6.

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