Monthly Archives: February 2012

Childcare costs rise by nearly 6%

Daycare Trust survey finds working parents are spending up to £15,000 on childcare, while wages have risen by only 0.3% Working parents are spending up to £15,000 a year on childcare as costs rise and fewer families receive help with … Continue reading

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Osborne rejects further fuel duty cut

Chancellor indicates he also wants to close off loophole that allows millionaires to pay a reduced rate of stamp duty George Osborne gave his strongest hint on Sunday that he has ruled out further cuts in fuel duty for motorists … Continue reading

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A running battle with LA Fitness

An 81-year-old thought he was signing up for a little light exercise. What he got was a two-year contract and the threat of legal action Michael Watkins is 81 and, like many retirees, is keen to do a little light … Continue reading

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Regular payments: know your rights

If you’ve authorised companies to take cash out of your bank account on a regular basis don’t believe anyone who says you can’t cancel, writes Rupert Jones Banks, financial websites and even government departments are giving consumers incorrect information about … Continue reading

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The slanging match over workfare is getting us nowhere

What’s needed is constructive criticism of the work placement programme – and I have a modest proposal You would imagine, with unemployment standing at a frightening 2.67 million, that companies with jobs to offer would be finding it easy to recruit … Continue reading

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Jobseekers forced to clean private homes and offices for nothing

Concern over unpaid workers taking overtime from staff as some placements last more than a month Unpaid jobseekers have been forced to clean private homes and offices for more than a month at a time under government employment schemes, despite … Continue reading

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What should work experience look like?

Debate rages over whether government programmes offer genuine help for jobless people or if they are simply exploitative Do the government’s work experience programmes provide much-needed experience for jobless people that will help them back into employment? Or are they … Continue reading

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Developer Hammerson puts office portfolio up for sale

Poor outlook for London office lettings prompts Brent Cross and Bullring-owner to focus on shopping centres and retail parks The worsening outlook for London office lettings has prompted developer Hammerson to put its entire existing office portfolio up for sale … Continue reading

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Santander’s mortgage affordability checks take the cake

Spending on birthdays, religious festivals and magazine subscriptions must be declared under Santander’s new mortgage affordability criteria Being generous at Christmas and birthdays could seriously hinder your chance of getting a mortgage following a decision by one of Britain’s biggest … Continue reading

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Online ticket reselling firms: a sleazy brand of capitalism typical of our times | Paul Mills

‘Touts’ create nothing of value, yet technology now allows them to make vast profits at the expense of fans, sport and the arts Dispatches’ recent investigation into the secondary ticket market – on which I worked as an undercover reporter … Continue reading

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