Interim manager Ralf Rangnick enjoyed a winning start to his tenure at Old Trafford as Manchester United claimed a hard-fought 1-0 win over Crystal Palace.
Reigning champions Manchester City ended the weekend top of the Premier League thanks to a 3-1 win at Watford after Chelsea lost 3-2 at West Ham, although the Blues did enjoy some success with victory over Arsenal in the delayed Women’s FA Cup final at Wembley.
Away from football, Lewis Hamilton won an incident-packed Saudi Arabian Grand Prix to draw level with Max Verstappen in the drivers’ championship, China’s Zhao Xintong won snooker’s UK Championship and Viktor Hovland claimed the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.
Here, the PA news agency showcases the best of the sporting weekend in pictures.
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Domestic politics did not hurt sentiment, although Prime Minister Boris Johnson was fighting to save his premiership amid a deepening revolt inside his party over a series of lockdown parties in Downing Street. "If anything, there is a risk of the BoE disappointing the market by acting less decisively" at its February meeting, Commerzbank analysts said, adding “a lot has already been priced in” in terms of future rate rises. “Unsurprisingly, political risk has not damaged GBP, where the focus remains squarely on whether the BoE hikes 25bp on February 3,” ING analysts said, adding they “continue to favour EUR/GBP drifting to the 0.8270/80 area.”
Playtech shares crashed today as the online gambling software firm’s multibillion pound takeover looked in doubt. One interested party ruled has itself out, while Playtech admitted it is unsure if the remaining £2.7 billion bid will win investor approval. A consortium led by Formula One tycoon Eddie Jordan that was circling Playtech today said it won’t make an offer.
European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde suggested Thursday that Renaissance master Leonardo da Vinci and pioneering French politician Simone Veil appear on the new euro banknotes, as she waded into a politically sensitive topic.
Office space providers including Workspace are limping back to recovery after being forced to realign their business models and strategies as tenants increasingly weigh in remote and hybrid working options or downsize spaces in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic. Companies exposed to office properties were pegged back further when the rapid spread of the Omicron variant brought back restrictions in several parts of the world. Workspace said utilisation, which calculates the physical usage of the office spaces by the tenants, has picked up in the first two weeks of January and is now at 43% of pre-pandemic levels, compared with 55% in November.
Shares in wind turbine maker Siemens Gamesa tumbled on Friday after it cut its financial outlook for the third time in nine months, dragging down the market value of its rivals as well as German parent Siemens Energy. Siemens Gamesa shares slumped as much as 16.2% to their lowest since July 2020, while Siemens Energy fell as much 17.4%, its biggest intraday loss ever, wiping out 4.6 billion euros ($5.2 billion) in market value between them. Profit margins at wind turbine makers have been squeezed by a surge in costs for vital materials such as steel, forcing companies such as Siemens Gamesa and Danish rival Vestas to increase their prices.
Czech businessman Karel Komarek's European lottery group Allwyn Entertainment will list on the New York Stock Exchange in combination with blank check acquisition company Cohn Robbins Holdings Corp, the companies said on Friday. The transaction will put the combined firm's enterprise value at approximately $9.3 billion, they said in a statement. Allwyn, known as Sazka Entertainment until last year, operates lotteries in the Czech Republic, Italy, Austria, Greece and Cyprus.
Britons splashed out on a bumper Christmas, results from the country's biggest retailers show, treating themselves to upmarket food, drink and clothes before the sober reality of surging prices hits home in 2022. Following is a summary of what major retailers have said so far about their performance over the holiday season. Britain's biggest retailer raised its profit outlook for the second time in four months as it reported a rise in Christmas sales despite a tough comparative with 2020 when spending was boosted by a COVID-19 lockdown.
Germany imported 7% less natural gas in the period from January to November 2021 than a year earlier, but its bill rose 78.5% as prices surged, official data from trade statistics office BAFA showed. However, there is concern over when flows will arrive through the new Nord Stream 2 pipeline from Russia, and about escalating tensions on the Russia/Ukraine border, which could disrupt or curtail shipments. BAFA's monthly figures showed Germany's imports in the first eleven months of last year totalled 4.546 million terajoules (TJ), equivalent to 129.3 billion cubic metres (bcm), compared with 4.888 million TJ a year earlier.
Euro zone consumer prices jumped at a record high pace in December, the EU's statistics agency confirmed on Thursday, boosted by a surge in energy prices and supply chain bottlenecks as the economy recovers from pandemic lockdowns. The European Union's statistics office Eurostat said consumer prices in the 19 countries sharing the euro rose 0.4% month-on-moth in December for a 5.0% year-on-year jump, the same as the initial estimate published on Jan 7. Without the volatile energy and food prices, or what the European Central Bank calls core inflation, prices went up 0.4% month-on-month and 2.7% year-on-year.
Money markets price in more than 100 basis points (bps) in interest rate rises in 2022 and an 87% chance of a 25 bps increase in February, after data showed on Wednesday that UK inflation rose faster than expected to its highest in nearly 30 years in December. Domestic politics has not hurt the pound even as Prime Minister Boris Johnson has fought to save his premiership in the face of a revolt in his party over a series of lockdown parties in Downing Street.
Influential British fund manager Terry Smith attacked Unilever's failed 50 billion pound ($68.2 billion) bid for GSK's Consumer Health assets as a "near death experience" and urged Unilever management to focus on strengthening performance. In a letter to investors of his Fundsmith vehicle, now the 13th biggest Unilever shareholder, Smith criticized Unilever for failing to openly communicate the benefits of the deal and its "penchant for corporate gobbledegook as substitute for effective action."
LONDON (Reuters) -London Metal Exchange (LME) Chief Executive Matt Chamberlain will step down in April, the exchange said on Friday, in a surprise move after five years at the helm of the world's largest market for industrial metals. Chamberlain, a former banker who has been at the LME for nine years, has taken the top job at digital asset custody services provider Komainu, his new employer said. Komainu, launched in 2020, is a joint venture between Japanese bank Nomura Holdings, digital asset security firm Ledger and digital asset investment house CoinShares.
With many more customers now opting for online fashion shopping instead of the high street, Andrew Woods investigates whether ASOS or boohoo is a better growth stock for his portfolio. The post ASOS or boohoo – which is a better growth stock? appeared first on The Motley Fool UK.