British businesses should increase the wages of their staff and pay the living wage for lower paid workers as they enjoy record profits in the wake of the fall in oil prices, David Cameron has said.
The price of oil plunged to $55.91 per barrel on Wednesday as the US opened the way to crude exports and China produced another set of downbeat economic statistics that pointed to a global slowdown.
EDF, one of the UK’s big six energy suppliers, could be in line for a £1bn windfall each year for three years from its existing coal and nuclear power stations under a controversial government-designed auction which starts on Tuesday.
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Inflation fell to its lowest level in more than five years in May after a sharp drop in air fares and retailers discounted food and clothing prices.
UK inflation fell to its lowest level in more than four years last month, easing the burden on households after years of squeezed incomes.
Compare and contrast. In the euro area, falling energy prices are cited as one of the reasons why the annual inflation rate has dropped to a four-year low of 0.7%.
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Inflation eased down to 2.7% in August thanks to smaller price rises for petrol and new autumn fashion ranges but the cost of living continued to outstrip pay rises.