Markets Pound pops after UK retail sales smash City expectations thanks to shoppers splashing out on food 2019-04-19T08:43:17.000000000+00:00 The month-on-month bounce, driven predominantly by food stores, was a big beat on the 0.3 per cent drop expected by the City. Rentokil's acquisition spree pays off with an 8.9% rise in revenue to £603.6m 2019-04-18T21:07:36.000000000+00:00 Rentokil Initial has reiterated plans to spend heavily on acquisitions, after a boost from buying sprees in the first quarter. It reported an 8.9 per cent rise in revenue to £603.6 million. ALEX BRUMMER: Technology is the answer to UK growth 2019-04-18T21:04:18.000000000+00:00 Instead of holding back on investment, managements may soon be forced to rethink an approach to expansion that doesn't simply rely on the supply of labour. MARKET REPORT: Online lending platform Funding Circle is back on track with £3.4bn worth of loans 2019-04-18T20:58:19.000000000+00:00 Shares climbed 5 per cent, or 15.5p, to 326p, providing some relief for shareholders who have lost out since the stock was listed in London at 440p in October. Provident Financial deal sparks a £45m fees bonanza 2019-04-18T20:51:39.000000000+00:00 The staggering fees are equal to over a quarter of the £154 million value of Non-Standard Finance (NSF), which is trying to buy its much larger rival, the Provvy. Factory output in France and Germany slumps as storm clouds gather over the eurozone economy 2019-04-18T20:48:14.000000000+00:00 Manufacturing contracted in both countries, says a survey by research group IHS Markit, suggesting a downturn at the end of last year continues. Shopping centre operator Intu sells a stake in its Derby mall for £186m to reduce debts 2019-04-18T20:40:38.000000000+00:00 The Kuwait-backed retail investor enters into the joint venture as Intu looks to cut debt through disposals and part-disposals. Debenhams boss Sergio Bucher quits with the hunt now on for his successor 2019-04-18T20:37:29.000000000+00:00 Debenhams chief executive Sergio Bucher has stepped down after the department store crashed into administration and was snapped up by its lenders. British single mother is in running to take on top job at JP Morgan as the first female boss 2019-04-18T20:36:06.000000000+00:00 Marianne Lake is moving from finance director to run the consumer lending and cards arm. It will give the 50-year-old crucial experience as she bolsters her credentials to succeed boss Jamie Dimon. Marmite owner Unilever sees revenues rise to £10.7bn as it hikes prices 2019-04-18T20:33:18.000000000+00:00 In a bumper set of results that sent shares close to record levels, the Anglo-Dutch giant said revenues rose 3.1 per cent to £10.7 billion in the first three months of the year.