Here’s your latest commercial news update. In summary, the FTSE 100 closed on a record high yesterday, due to oil prices and interest rates. The maximum stake on betting machines has been cut to just £2 and the East Coast Main Line is being handed back over to the government. Also in the news this week, Ocado’s shares reached a record high due to a new partnership and the proportion of low-paid workers in the UK has fallen to the lowest rate since the 1980s. These articles will get you up to speed in more detail.
The FTSE 100 closed on Thursday on a record high. This was due largely to oil prices hitting $80 a barrel for the first time in four years, boosting shares in oil companies. The hold on increase rates has also given shares an extra boost.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) delivered a blow to bookmakers this week. The department has cut the maximum stake on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOTBs) from £100 to £2. The changes are likely to be introduced in 2019.
The East Coast Main Line is being put back into public control. Virgin Trains and Stagecoach will hand over control to the Department for Transport until a new public-private partnership can be formed. The failed franchise had overestimated the profitability of the line.
Ocado has partnered with Kroger, a US food chain, propelling shares to a record high. Ocado’s technology will be used by Kroger for distribution.
The proportion of UK workers who are low-paid (earning less than £8.50 an hour) has fallen to its lowest since the early 1980s. This is due to above-inflation increases in the national living wage.