News Round-Up

Mar 20: Inflation to fall; Kate’s medical records; Audi Q6 e-Tron; Ted Baker struggles

  • Here are the headlines on Wednesday, March 20

Time 6:53 am, March 20, 2024

Inflation expected to fall to fresh low of over two years

UK inflation is expected to have fallen to a fresh low of nearly two and a half years when official data for February is released.

Most economists expect the figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to show that inflation fell to 3.5% in February – down from 4% in January and the lowest since September 2021, when it was 3.1%.

It comes ahead of the Bank of England’s latest interest rate decision on Thursday, with policymakers widely expected to keep rates on hold at 5.25%.

Hospital staff where Kate had surgery ‘tried to access her medical records’

An investigation has reportedly been launched at The London Clinic over claims staff tried to access the Princess of Wales’s private medical records.

At least one member of staff tried to access Kate’s notes while she was a patient at the private hospital in central London in January, The Mirror reported.

The princess was admitted to the hospital for abdominal surgery on January 16.

UK economy needs fundamental course correction, says shadow chancellor Reeves

Labour will alter Chancellor Jeremy Hunt’s fiscal rule on borrowing in a bid to boost investment into Britain, Rachel Reeves said.

The shadow chancellor used a speech lasting close to an hour to set out her vision if Labour wins the general election widely expected this year.

During the annual Mais Lecture in the City of London on Tuesday, Ms Reeves said Britain needs a ‘fundamental course correction’ to improve living standards and guard the ‘health of our democracy’.

Audi takes the covers off new Q6 e-Tron

Audi has revealed its new Q6 e-Tron electric SUV ahead of its on-sale date later this year.

The new model will be the first production Audi to be built on a new Premium platform electric – or PPE – which has been jointly developed with Porsche and used in that firm’s new Macan.

The new platform will be used on all future electric Audi models to help it expand its global range of EVs.

Tuesday’s Car Dealer headlines you might have missed

Close to 1,000 jobs at risk as Ted Baker set to call in administrators

Hundreds of jobs could be at risk as the company behind Ted Baker filed a motion to appoint administrators to the ailing high street retailer.

Authentic Brands Group, which owns the brand, said there had been ‘damage’ done during a partnership with Dutch firm AARC Group, which ran Ted Baker’s shops and online business in Europe.

No Ordinary Designer Label (NODL), the company which trades as Ted Baker, walked away from the AARC deal in January after it claimed its partner had failed to meet its promise to inject cash into the business. It has now filed a motion to appoint administrators.

HMRC will close self-assessment helpline between April and September

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has drawn criticism after announcing permanent changes which include closing the self-assessment helpline for some of the year.

HMRC said changes to helpline services to encourage people to go online first have been successfully trialled over the past year and are being rolled out to become a permanent feature from April 8.

But the chairwoman of the Treasury Select Committee, Harriett Baldwin, said the move to online services should not be ‘forced on taxpayers’.

Unilever helps lift FTSE 100 into the green ahead of new UK inflation data

The FTSE 100 moved higher on Tuesday with investors in good spirits ahead of an expected drop in the rate of UK inflation and a strong session for consumer goods giant Unilever.

The UK’s top stock market index was up 15.75 points or 0.2% to close at 7,738.3.

Elsewhere in Europe, Germany’s Dax was up 0.31% and France’s Cac 40 closed 0.65% higher.

Weather outlook…

Today will be cloudy for most. Rain in central areas will tend to clear eastwards, becoming lighter and patchier in the afternoon. Much of the northwest and the southeast will be drier and brighter, the BBC reports.

Tonight will become dry with clear spells developing for many along with some patchy mist and fog. Clouding over in Scotland and Northern Ireland in the early hours with rain in the far north-west.

Tomorrow, the north will be cloudy with bands of heavy, persistent rain moving in from the west. It will turn windy. The south will be dry and calmer with some bright spells at times.

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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