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News Round-Up

Jan 26: Lloyds to axe 1,600 jobs; Dragons’ Den episode taken off iPlayer; New electric Macan

  • Here are the headlines for Friday, January 26

Time 6:34 am, January 26, 2024

Lloyds to cut 1,600 jobs across branches in shift to online banking

Lloyds Banking Group has said it is cutting about 1,600 jobs across its branch network, as part of an ongoing shift towards online banking.

The role reductions follow a tranche of branch closures announced last year as the group said the way customers are choosing to do their banking has changed ‘rapidly’ in recent years.

The overhaul will also see 830 roles created in an expanded ‘relationship growth’ team, where more staff will be available to talk to customers in branches via video meetings or over the phone.

BBC takes Dragons’ Den episode off iPlayer over ME product concerns

The BBC has taken an episode of Dragons’ Den off its streaming platform after concerns were raised about a myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) product.

Campaigners have said businesswoman Giselle Boxer made ‘unfounded claims’ on the business show after she was shown in series 21 securing an investment from entrepreneur and podcaster Steven Bartlett.

Yesterday, a BBC spokesperson said: ‘We’re taking the concerns raised seriously, so we are reviewing the episode and therefore it’s currently not available on iPlayer.’

John Lewis slashes redundancy payouts amid fears over more job cuts

The John Lewis Partnership is to halve its redundancy pay package for workers as the troubled retail giant continues to slash costs as part of its major overhaul.

The move has ratcheted up concerns that more job cuts could be imminent at the group, which runs the department store chain and Waitrose grocery business.

It said the group’s redundancy pay package, which gives workers two weeks of redundancy pay for every year at the business, will be reduced to one week of pay per year in addition to statutory redundancy pay.

Spectator chairman urges ministers to block ‘absurd’ Abu Dhabi-backed takeover

The chairman of The Spectator has said it would be ‘absurd’ for a ‘dictatorship’ to own the right-wing magazine as he railed against a potential takeover by an Abu Dhabi-backed fund.

Andrew Neil told the BBC he would quit his role with the 200-year-old publication if the takeover goes ahead.

In his first public comments on the proposed deal, the journalist and broadcaster said the potential for The Daily Telegraph and The Spectator to be owned by a group headed by senior rulers in the United Arab Emirates, an authoritarian Gulf state, ‘beggars belief’ and urged ministers to block the deal.

Consumer confidence reaches highest point in two years as optimism strengthens

Consumer confidence has reached its highest level in two years as optimism for the coming 12 months strengthens, according to a long-running survey.

GfK’s Consumer Confidence Index rose by three points to minus 19 this month – its best headline score since January 2022.

Confidence in personal finances gained two points and now stands at zero, ending 24 consecutive months of negative scores and ‘the best single indicator for how the nation’s households feel about their income and expenditure’, GfK said.

Apple unveils changes to iPhone app fees to comply with EU rules

Apple has unveiled a sweeping plan to tear down competitive barriers that it has built around its lucrative iPhone franchise.

Yesterday’s announcement comes as it moves to comply with upcoming EU regulations aimed at giving consumers the choice to use alternative app stores.

The overhaul, scheduled to take effect in early March, will include concessions that Apple had previously refused to make in its app store, including lowering the fees that it collects from developers in Europe.

Mars helicopter will make no more flights after rotor damage – Nasa

Nasa’s little Mars helicopter has made its last flight.

The space agency announced yesterday that the 1.8kg aircraft can no longer fly because of rotor blade damage.

While Ingenuity remains upright and in contact with flight controllers, its $85m (circa £66.9m) mission is officially over. Originally intended as a short-term tech demo, it logged 72 flights over three years on Mars.

Jeremy Clarkson explains decision to quit The Grand Tour

Jeremy Clarkson says filming The Grand Tour was ‘immensely physical’ and they ran out of new ideas for the TV show, as he spoke about why it was decided to end it.

The veteran TV star, 63, has appeared in five seasons of the Amazon Prime Video show, travelling the world with James May and Richard Hammond test-driving vehicles on adventurous road trips.

Clarkson also said he doesn’t think the move to electric cars across the globe makes ‘very interesting television’. The final TV special, to be aired this year, will see the trio exploring Zimbabwe.

Porsche Macan interior via PA

Porsche extends EV line-up with new electric Macan

Porsche’s new electric Macan has broken on to the scene with a range of up to 381 miles.

Joining the Taycan, it features a large 100kWh battery that unlocks that headline range, while 630bhp in top-spec Turbo models results in a 0-60mph time of just 3.1 seconds and a range of 367 miles.

The entry-level Macan 4 still produces a respectable 402bhp and brings a 0-60mph of five seconds, reaching a top speed of 137mph plus the tip-top 381 miles between charges.

Yesterday’s headlines on Car Dealer you might have missed

Market movements

The FTSE 100 closed 2.06 points up yesterday to end the day on 7,529.73. The Cac 40 was up 8.56 points at 7,464.20, the Dax was up 17.00 points at 16,906.92, and the Dow Jones was up 242.74 points at 38,049.13.

Weather outlook

Much of the UK will be dry today with winter sunshine, especially in the south and the east, according to BBC Weather. North-west Scotland will see variable cloud and scattered blustery showers, wintry for some early on.

On Saturday, England and Wales will remain dry with frequent bright spells. North-west Scotland will be cloudy and windy with outbreaks of rain. Elsewhere, it’ll be mostly dry with variable cloud.

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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