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Friday, March 13th, 2015


Chris Graham has resigned as a director of Rangers FC amid social media inquiry

Government in dock over LBTT

New land tax ‘pricing foreign investors out of market’

David Alexander

Foreign investors are likely to be priced out of the Scottish residential market by the Holyrood government’s new housing transaction tax , it has been claimed. Veteran estate and letting agent, David Alexander, has warned that overseas money will be diverted into English cities where tax on higher priced property is much lower. A growing numbers of foreign investors – keen to get their money into UK property but finding London overpriced – are starting to look at the English regions and Scotland as alternatives. However, interest in Scottish properties among Chinese and UK expatriateRead More

Wood is new MD at Black & Lizars

Black & Lizars, one of Scotland’s largest independently-owned optometrists, has appointed Geraldine Wood as managing director. Ms Wood, previously chief operating officer, has been with the business for more than 12 years. It has grown its turnover by more than 20% over the last two years and recently opened a store in Edinburgh. Her appointment follows the departure of chief executive Mark Ross and supply chain director Alison Scammell. Colin Black remains as senior optometrist and supportive of Ms Wood and the management team. Black & Lizars operates from 24 branches in Scotland and also has a practice inRead More

As reforms loom next month...

Pensions: Standard Life opts for full flexibility

pension pot 2

Standard Life is to give customers full pensions flexibility under the reforms coming into effect next month. The company is also offering what it calls “comprehensive support” online and on the phone to ensure customers understand their options. Customers will have access to their pension money in any way they choose, from full cash withdrawal to flexible drawdown and access to an annuities panel for a guaranteed income option. They will be able to use intuitive online models to play with different scenarios, helping them to fully understand the impact andRead More

Fri City brief: Wetherspoon enjoying breakfast trade

Shares in challenger bank Aldermore made their debut, coming off the 220p offer price slightly at the opening but closing up 7p at 227p. Bank shares were in focus, led by TSB which received a surprise bid from Spanish bank Sabadell yesterday prompting a 23% surge in the shares. The 340p per share offer is 80p above last summer’s flotation price. They edged up an 1.9p to close at 328p. After touching a low of 6,713.50,  the FTSE100 finished 20.49 points (-0.3%) lower at 6,740.58, ending the week down 2.5%. CompanyRead More

Game of Thrones star fronts bank advert

Scottish actor, James Cosmo will front the latest Bank of Scotland television advertising campaign which kicks off this weekend. He appears as someone at a “crossroads” moment in life. Cosmo has been in film and television productions since the late 1960s and is probably best known for his roles in Highlander, Braveheart and, most recently, Game of Thrones. The new Bank of Scotland advert was filmed in Glen Etive in the Highlands, which has been used as the backdrop to many movies, including Skyfall and Braveheart. Cosmo plays a ‘spiritRead More

Survey points to resilient sector

Oil firms planning for growth despite price fall

Oil and gas companies are far more optimistic about growth despite the plunge in the price of a barrel. The findings of a survey by Bank of Scotland show firms are planning to take on workers, but in smaller numbers. it contrasts with reports that thousands of jobs will be lost as oilfields become less viable. Bank of Scotland’s fourth annual oil and gas report reveals that 92% of companies are planning to grow investment and jobs over the next two years. Of the 101 companies questioned, 73 expect toRead More

Campaigners urge action from Chancellor

Whisky sales slump prompts further call for tax cut

Scotch whisky producers have stepped up their campaign for a cut in tax after new figures revealed that sales in Britain slumped by almost 5% last year. The industry is urging the Chancellor, George Osborne, to cut duty in the Budget next week to avoid a further decline in sales. It says that a 2% cut in tax would boost tax revenues by increasing activity and customer demand. Figures published today by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) reveal that the number of 70cl bottles of Scotch released for sale inRead More

Medicine a little strong for anchorman

‘Listen, chum, will you leave me alone?’ says tight-lipped Paxman

Jeremy Paxman

Former BBC Newsnight anchorman Jeremy Paxman, best known for his persistent questioning of politicians, last night showed he was not prepared to take any of his own medicine. Asked after a dinner engagement in Edinburgh whether he thought Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson should be sacked for his fracas with a producer of the show, Mr Paxman made it clear that he was not willing to declare his position. “I have very strong views on that,” he told Daily Business. When asked again, he repeated his answer. Asked a third time,Read More