Ministers are to kick off a search for the first chair of a powerful new statutory audit regulator amid a wide-ranging shake-up of the industry. Sky News has learnt that the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) will advertise in the coming weeks for a new chairman of the Financial Reporting Council (FRC), the existing watchdog. Sources said that the appointee would automatically go on to chair the new Audit, Reporting and Governance Authority (ARGA) when it is established in about 2023. Keith Skeoch, the FRC's interim chair, has had his contract extended in recent weeks to run until October, according to insiders. Ironically, the extension of his tenure takes Mr Skeoch well beyond the nine-year stint on the FRC board that the regulator regards as a ceiling on the independence of directors on corporate boards. Advertisement The search for a long-term successor to Mr Skeoch will come as the audit sector awaits the conclusion of … [Read more...] about Ministers to kick off search for new audit watchdog chair amid industry shake-up
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Jes Staley, the chief executive of Barclays, could be forgiven if tonight he reaches for a more expensive wine than usual for a Friday evening. A major thorn in his - and the bank's - side has just been removed. Edward Bramson, the British-born but US-based activist investor, today called time on his three-year campaign to get Barclays to shrink its corporate and investment banking business and reinvest the capital saved in other areas. Sherborne Investors, his investment vehicle, said it had offloaded its entire 6.01% shareholding in the bank. The news will come as a huge boost to Mr Staley. Sherborne had been a huge distraction to him as he sought to navigate the bank through the recession sparked by COVID-19 . Advertisement The Sherborne fund that had held the stake in Barclays included some of the City's best-known investors, including Schroders, Aviva, Fidelity International, Jupiter, Janus Henderson, Invesco and Colombia Threadneedle, among its … [Read more...] about Barclays boss Staley emerges victorious after activist investor battle
A coronavirus strain first detected in India has been declared a "variant of concern" by Public Health England, as cases more than double in a week. The designation of the COVID-19 variant known as B1617.2, raises the prospect of surge testing in infection hotspots to curb transmission. Live coronavirus updates from the UK and around the world It comes as the government is due to reveal quarantine-free holiday destinations with the expected lifting of the ban on foreign breaks from 17 May. However, despite concerns over the current coronavirus variant, health experts have said they "haven't seen any hint" any COVID strain can evade the vaccines. Advertisement Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player Boris Johnson on the India variant The strain is one of three related variants first seen in India which have been detected in the UK and designated "under investigation" by PHE. The others … [Read more...] about COVID-19: India coronavirus strain declared ‘variant of concern’ in England
EASTENDERS fans are in tears over Karen Taylor’s public meltdown over missing Bailey Baker. The mum - who is played by actress Lorraine Stanley in the BBC soap - was broken after her neighbours left her a pamper hamper instead of helping find Bailey. Smashing the hamper down in the Square, she screamed: "You think this helps? A packet of biscuits and a bath bomb. “You think I've got time to sit in a bath when my little girl's living on the streets or worse - dead in a ditch? And this - we're here for you. Is that what you think? “She's been missing for days and I've hardly seen you. Give me a job in your salon - a few shifts sweeping the floor. You knew I was out of work, that money was tight. I want to earn, I don't want to ponce. “And people go on about community, about being kind, posting things online about the state of the country, unemployment, sticking up sad face emojis and then drinking a glass of wine. “Does this make you feel better about yourself? Does … [Read more...] about EastEnders fans in tears as Karen Taylor has emotional meltdown over missing Bailey
THIS scrawl by John Lennon was a hit as a collection of Beatles memorabilia went under the hammer. It was one of two strange scribbles by the late musician that together went for £9,563. Items from the band’s Hamburg years included letters to German photographer Astrid Kirchherr. Lennon ’s work permits for visits to the city fetched £137,750. A letter from John Lennon sold for £50,250, while photographs of the Beatles arriving at Hamburg airport in June 1962 were sold for £12,750. The collection was sold for a total of £383,823 by auctioneers Bonhams in London on Wednesday. Most read in Music Exclusive 'WAKE-UP CALL' I quit drinking to make our best album yet, says Royal Blood's Mike Kerr DIVIDE & CONQUER Can you guess the football-mad celebrity in this throwback childhood pic? 'I'M FREE' Jesy Nelson says 'I didn't know I could be this happy' after quitting Little Mix … [Read more...] about Strange drawings by John Lennon sell at auction for over £9,500 – but could your two-year-old do better?