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Labour pledges to scrap stamp duty for first-time home buyers

- The Labour Party will announce a plan on Monday to scrap the stamp duty for first-time home buyers and give them the right to buy up to half of new homes built locally, as the party lays out its plan to tackle the country's housing crisis ahead of next month's election.


No Bank of England rate rise until early 2016 - Reuters poll 23 Apr 2015

- The Bank of England will wait until early 2016 before raising interest rates, but with economic growth forecast to stay steady and inflation below target, even then it is a close call, according to a Reuters poll of economists.

More Britons move banks as switching service speeds up process 23 Apr 2015

LONDON - Rules making it easier for Britons to switch banks resulted in a 7 percent increase in the number of customers moving accounts in the last 12 months, the Payments Council said on Thursday.


Bank of England upbeat on euro zone, eyes inflation pressures 22 Apr 2015

LONDON - Bank of England policymakers struck a more bullish tone on the euro zone and the prospects for higher inflation in their latest set of policy minutes on Wednesday, pushing sterling higher, though a rate rise still appears some way off.

Metro Bank says over 500,000 customer accounts opened since 2010 22 Apr 2015

LONDON - New British lender Metro Bank said over 500,000 customer accounts had been opened at the bank, with customer deposits more than doubling over the past year and total lending rising by 90 percent.

Increasingly discerning bank customers more likely to switch 22 Apr 2015

LONDON - Consumers across the world are far more likely to switch banks than they were a year ago, with technological change having raised expectations of younger customers and provided more alternatives, a survey showed.


Fiscal freedom for Scotland would mean spending cuts, tax rises - think-tank 21 Apr 2015

LONDON - Scotland would have to make "substantial" spending cuts or increase taxes if the Scottish National Party (SNP) gained full control of the country's finances after next month's general election, the Institute for Fiscal Studies said on Tuesday.


New risks as young Londoners priced out of housing market 21 Apr 2015

LONDON - Last weekend, London couple Vicki Clayton and James Renhard left behind cramped bedrooms that smelt of smoke, housemates who stole their food and a landlord who kept his deposit, and moved into a rented flat of their own.

Factbox: Housing policies of Britain's major political parties 21 Apr 2015

LONDON - As Britain heads to national elections in May, high prices have reshaped the housing market, doubling the proportion of people who rent privately and dissuading many young people from saving for a home. Britain's main political parties have different policies to fix the problem:

British car insurance premiums fall in first quarter 21 Apr 2015

LONDON - British car insurance premiums fell by 1 percent in the first quarter due to discounts on offer early in the year, roadside recovery service the AA said on Tuesday, following two quarters of price rises.


Asking prices for homes in England hit new high

LONDON - Asking prices for homes on sale in England and Wales hit an all-time in the month to early April, pushed up by a fall in the number of properties on the market, property website Rightmove said on Monday.


Cameron lines up pensions expert as minister

LONDON - Prime Minister David Cameron said on Saturday that he would appoint a well-known pensions expert, Ros Altmann, as a financial services minister if he returns to power after next month's election.

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