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News Round-Up

Aug 3: Stagflation warning; Company failures soar; Tory ballots delay; Pimp My Ride returning

  • Here are the headlines for Wednesday, August 3

Time 6:38 am, August 3, 2022

Stagflation warning as UK ‘set to enter recession’

The UK is set to enter a recession that will hit millions of the most vulnerable households, especially in the worst-off parts of the country, a report has warned.

Gross domestic product is set to shrink in the third and fourth quarters of this year and in the first three months of 2023, said the National Institute of Economic and Social Research.

It said the threat of stagflation – where an economy sees slow growth, high unemployment and rising prices – has returned for the first time since the 1970s.

Company failures leap 81 per cent higher as inflation weighs on UK firms

Company failures shot 81 per cent higher over the three months to June against the same period last year, as soaring inflation started to bite for UK firms.

Between April 1 and June 30, the government reported 5,629 insolvencies, largely driven by 4,908 creditors’ voluntary liquidations – the highest quarterly figure since records began in 1960.

The Insolvency Service also recorded 368 compulsory liquidations, 320 administrations and 32 company voluntary arrangements.

Ballots delay gives Sunak time before votes cast as Truss pulls ahead in poll

Rishi Sunak appears to have lost ground in the Tory leadership race but a reported ballot delivery delay over security concerns could give him more time to make an impression before votes are cast.

A YouGov poll puts Liz Truss well ahead of Sunak in support from party members, with her lead increasing to 34 points.

The Conservative party has delayed sending out ballots on the advice of the National Cyber Security Centre because of concerns over the vulnerability of the voting process, the Telegraph reported.

Direct Line to increase insurance premiums after profits nearly halve

Direct Line has seen profits almost halve and warned that insurance premiums will be increased to match the soaring cost of claims.

The insurer said supply chain disruption and unusually high used car prices have pushed up claims costs for breakdowns, but premiums haven’t increased accordingly.

The company saw its operating profit plunge 47 per cent to £195.5m in the six months to June 30.

Transport workers in London to launch 24-hour strikes as part of pay disputes

Transport workers on London Underground and the Overground network will take 24-hour strike action in separate disputes later this month, the biggest rail workers’ union confirmed yesterday.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union will walk out on August 19, in between strikes on August 18 and 20 by Network Rail and 14 train operators in the long-running row over pay, jobs and conditions.

The union gave Transport for London until yesterday to give assurances that there would be no job losses, no detrimental changes to pensions and no changes or imposition of working conditions.

Big retailers failing to cut fuel prices in line with wholesale cost, says RAC

Major retailers are failing to reduce petrol prices in line with falling wholesale costs, the RAC has said.

The roadside recovery firm said wholesale cost of unleaded – the price when it arrives at forecourts – is now back down to its early May price of 131.75p per litre, which saw average pump prices of around 167p per litre.

But drivers are currently paying an average of 183p per litre at pumps across the UK despite the drop in wholesale costs, the RAC said.

Truck maker Hino faked emissions data for nearly 20 years

Hino Motors, a truck maker that is part of the Toyota group, systematically falsified emissions data dating back as far back as 2003, according to the results of an investigation.

Company president Satoshi Ogiso bowed deeply at a hastily called news conference yesterday and apologised to customers and other stakeholders.

Teams that were developing engines knew they could not meet targets and felt so pressured they falsified test results, he said. That led to more deception as workers covered up their wrongdoing, he added.

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Pimp My Ride to make comeback

The famous early-2000s car restoration series Pimp My Ride will return to the UK later this month.

Hosted by British rapper Lady Leshurr, the new six-part series on MTV UK’s YouTube channel – starting on Friday, August 19 – will highlight the cost and environmental benefits of buying second-hand parts via a partnership with eBay’s Certified Recycle Hub.

Undertaken by Surrey-based workshop Wrench Studios, the transformations will see cars such as a 1966 Volkswagen Beetle and a 1992 Mitsubishi GTO completely restored while given trademark Pimp My Ride additions such as upgraded sound systems and large interior screens and displays.

Tuesday Car Dealer headlines you might have missed

Batgirl film reportedly scrapped following poor screen tests

Warner Bros has reportedly scrapped its upcoming Batgirl film following poor screen-testing results.

The DC film, which was set to feature Leslie Grace in the title role plus Michael Keaton, Brendan Fraser and JK Simmons, was being filmed entirely in Glasgow.

Production reportedly cost an estimated $70m (£57.6m) and the film was scheduled for release in late 2022.

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Market movements

The FTSE closed 4.31 points down yesterday, ending on 7,409.11. Meanwhile, the Cac 40 fell by 27.06 points to 6,409.80, the Dax shed 30.43 points, finishing on 13,449.20, and the Dow Jones lost 402.23 points to close on 32,396.17.

Weather outlook

The north will have scattered showers and patchy cloud today, says BBC Weather, with similar in the south clearing to leave a dry and sunny afternoon.

Thursday will be drier and sunnier but cooler as well, with patchy cloud bringing isolated showers through the day, most frequent in the north and west.

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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