Government Bonds Correspondent
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Jan 14, 2015

UK’s Osborne says need to decide on sale of RBS stake soon after election

LONDON, Jan 14 (Reuters) – British finance minister George
Osborne said he would need to decide quickly about a sale of the
government’s stake in the bailed-out Royal Bank of Scotland
after May’s election, adding he hoped to be able to
recover taxpayers’ money.

Osborne also gave more details of his plans to fix
Britain’s public finances, saying he would hand independent
budget forecasters the power to say when the government could
stray from running a surplus if the economy ran into trouble.

Jan 14, 2015

Britain rejects bid to force energy companies to pass on oil price drop

LONDON, Jan 14 (Reuters) – British lawmakers on Wednesday
voted against giving energy regulators the power to force
utility firms to lower prices when wholesale costs fall,
rejecting a bid by the opposition Labour Party designed to win
over voters before an election in May.

Labour called the vote to try and shift the political debate
onto energy prices, an issue they have used successfully in the
past to show that voters’ living standards have fallen since
Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron won power in 2010.

Jan 13, 2015

UK parties agree post-election budget targets but debate rages on

LONDON, Jan 13 (Reuters) – Britain’s two main political
parties committed to an ambitious set of fiscal targets on
Tuesday, but fierce disagreement over how they should be
interpreted and achieved laid bare their political attack lines
ahead of May’s national election.

The May 7 vote is likely to be one of the closest in a
generation and the future of Britain’s economy, namely how
aggressively the next government should set about reducing a
large budget deficit, may be one of its defining issues.

Dec 31, 2014

Left turn could cost UK’s Labour the 2015 election, says ex-PM Blair

LONDON (Reuters) – Ed Miliband, leader of Britain’s opposition, has damaged his chances of winning next May’s national election by steering his Labour party too far to the left, former Labour prime minister Tony Blair said on Wednesday.

The criticism from one of Labour’s most successful leaders highlights policy divisions within the party and doubts over Miliband’s ability to win a close-fought election race against Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron.

Dec 30, 2014

Health worker with Ebola transferred to London hospital

LONDON (Reuters) – A health worker who was the first person diagnosed in Britain with Ebola arrived at a London hospital from Scotland early on Tuesday for treatment after contracting the disease in West Africa.

The woman arrived at the Royal Free hospital, Britain’s designated Ebola treatment center, in an ambulance accompanied by several police vehicles, a Reuters witness said.

Dec 18, 2014

Britain targets financial fraud with anti-corruption police unit

LONDON, Dec 18 (Reuters) – Britain is to set up a specialist
police unit focused on corruption and bribery, aiming to bolster
its defences against white-collar crime in the financial sector
as part of a wider plan to stamp out fraudulent business
practices.

Banks and other financial players account for about a tenth
of the UK economy’s output but the sector has been damaged by a
succession of scandals, making it important for the government
to show it is clamping down on wrongdoing.

Dec 18, 2014

UK earnings recovery might not help Cameron much before election

LONDON (Reuters) – The wages of British workers are rising and inflation is tumbling, but a turnaround in living standards may prove to be too little, too late for Prime Minister David Cameron as a general election approaches.

Earnings, excluding bonuses, grew by more than inflation for a second straight month in October after lagging behind prices for five years, data showed on Wednesday.

Dec 17, 2014

UK earnings recovery might not help Cameron much before vote

LONDON (Reuters) – The wages of British workers are rising and inflation is tumbling, but a turnaround in living standards may prove to be too little, too late for Prime Minister David Cameron as national elections approach.

Earnings, excluding bonuses, grew by more than inflation for a second straight month in October after lagging behind prices for five years, data showed on Wednesday.

Dec 16, 2014

Cameron’s plans to shake up lawmaking worry his rivals

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s two main political parties accused each other on Tuesday of putting the future of the nation at risk as they drew battle lines over how to reform the constitution after Scotland’s failed bid for independence.

A last-ditch promise to transfer powers to Scotland’s devolved parliament from London helped swing a close referendum in September in favour of keeping the United Kingdom together, but that has awakened decades-old grievances over imbalances in the way laws are made in England.

Dec 16, 2014

Cameron’s plans to shake up English lawmaking worry his rivals

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s two main political parties accused each other on Tuesday of putting the future of the nation at risk as they drew battle lines over how to reform the constitution after Scotland’s failed bid for independence.

A last-ditch promise to transfer powers to Scotland’s devolved parliament from London helped swing a close referendum in September in favor of keeping the United Kingdom together, but that has awakened decades-old grievances over imbalances in the way laws are made in England.