News Round-Up

Mar 2: Sunak’s ‘extremist’ warning; Brabus Rocket 1000; Musk sues OpenAI

  • Here are the headlines on Saturday, March 2

Time 6:50 am, March 2, 2024

Sunak warns that extremist forces are ‘trying to tear us apart’

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak used a Friday evening address to warn that democracy is being targeted by extremists.

Mr Sunak said there are ‘forces here at home trying to tear us apart’.

Speaking at a lectern outside the doors of No 10 Downing Street, Mr Sunak warned about the current situation in Britain, in the aftermath of the October 7 attacks by Hamas against Israel.

Credit card complaints to ombudsman service reach record high

Complaints about credit cards reached a record high in the final three months of last year, according to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).

Consumers lodged 5,660 gripes about their credit cards between October 1 2023 and December 31 2023 – the highest level the service has seen for a three-month-period. Its comparable data goes back to the first quarter of the financial year 2014/15.

The organisation, which acts as a free resolution service for consumers and their financial providers, said 3,086 of those complaints were due to perceived unaffordable or irresponsible lending by financial firms.

The new Brabus Rocket 1000 is a 987bhp four-door supercar

A new four-door coupe created by German tuning firm Brabus looks set to become one of the most powerful hybrid cars ever made.

Limited to just 25 examples worldwide, the Rocket shares its underpinnings with the Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S E Performance four-door coupe but has a number of mechanical upgrades to make it more powerful than its donor vehicle.

Powered by a 4.5-litre, Biturbo V8 linked to an electric motor, the Rocket 1000 is set to produce around 987bhp and a peak torque output of 1,820Nm.

Cut to interest rates still ‘some way off’, says Bank of England economist

The Bank of England’s top economist has said he believes a cut to UK interest rates is still ‘some way off’.

Huw Pill, chief economist at the central bank, also warned that the economy is currently weak and said policymakers should not feel a ‘false sense of security’ if inflation falls below the 2% target rate in the coming months.

Mr Pill, who has been in the role since 2021, made the comments during a speech at Cardiff University.

Elon Musk sues OpenAI and its chief over ‘betrayal of goal to benefit humanity’

Elon Musk is suing OpenAI and its chief executive Sam Altman over what he says is a betrayal of the ChatGPT maker’s founding aims of benefiting humanity rather than pursuing profits.

In a lawsuit filed at San Francisco Superior Court, billionaire Mr Musk said that when he bankrolled OpenAI’s creation, he secured an agreement with Mr Altman and Greg Brockman, the president, to keep the AI company as a non-profit that would develop technology for the benefit of the public.

Under its founding agreement, OpenAI would also make its code open to the public instead of walling it off for any private company’s gains, the lawsuit says.

Friday’s Car Dealer headlines you might have missed

BMW continues ‘art car’ story with colour-changing i5

BMW has been creating its famous ‘art cars’ since 1975, allowing some of the world’s most notable artists to put their own stamp on the German manufacturer’s latest models.

In fact, BMW has made 20 art cars since the program began, with American sculptor Alexander Calder kicking things off with a multicoloured 3.0 CSL in 1975. Other highlights include Andy Warhol’s M1 in 1979, and Jenny Holzer’s statement-covered V12 LMR in 1999.

Now, the company has revealed their 21st creation at the 2024 Frieze Los Angeles art fair.

Hundreds gather in Moscow for Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s funeral

Under a heavy police presence, thousands of people bade farewell Friday to opposition leader Alexei Navalny at his funeral in Moscow after his still-unexplained death two weeks ago in an Arctic penal colony.

The crowds who thronged to honour Mr Navalny outside a church and cemetery in a snowy south-eastern suburb of the capital chanted slogans for him and against Russian President Vladimir Putin and the war in Ukraine, turning the event into one of the largest recent displays of dissent. But police did not act against them.

At least 91 people were detained at events across Russia in Mr Navalny’s memory, said OVD-Info, a rights group that tracks political arrests, with most stopped while trying to lay flowers at monuments dedicated to victims of Soviet repression.

UK shares rise as energy and mining stocks boosted by oil prices

London’s FTSE 100 has ended the week in the green after a strong session for banks, miners and energy firms while international peers hit fresh record highs.

The blue-chip index moved 52.48 points higher, or 0.69%, to close at 7,682.5, helped by gains for Standard Chartered and Anglo American.

It was 0.5% higher while the Dow Jones was up about 0.1% by the time European markets closed.

Weather outlook…

Today will be an unsettled and chilly day thick cloud and showery rain slowly progressing northwards, turning to sleet and snow on the hills. The BBC reports there will be longer spells of rain in the far north of Scotland

Tonight, it will turn drier with showers tending to ease and clear spells developing. However, showery rain and hill snow will move across Scotland. A cold night with light winds for most.

Mainly dry with bright spells tomorrow but staying dull and wet with hill snow in the far north for a time. A few light showers developing from the west later. Risk of patchy rain in the far east too.

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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