Today's business and finance round up 15th March 2022
👔Suits out and veggie sausages in as inflation basket refreshed
15th March 2022
Bite-sized business news from the UK and beyond
Good morning It's the ultimate taste of regret. An unfortunate student has been left feeling defeated after unknowingly eating a Cadbury's Creme Egg which could have won him £10,000. At the start of the year, Cadbury released 146 prize-winning eggs across the country with the chance of winning a range of cash prizes including six worth £10,000.
Suited and booted – Suits out and veggie sausages in as inflation basket refreshed
Chips are down – British chip designer plans jobs cuts after failed US bid
ECONOMYSuits out and veggie sausages in as inflation basket refreshed
What’s going on?
The Office of National Statistics has updated its basket of 730 goods and services that it tracks to measure the cost of living reflecting the way that two years of the pandemic has shaped how we live and what we buy.
Why is this important?
Since 1947 the ONS has been measuring inflation by using a basket of items that is supposed to mirror the spending habits of a typical consumer.The latest refresh of this basket has seen 15 deletions and 19 additions. For the first time ever, suits have been removed reflecting the shift to home working and more casual dressing since 2020. But business attire will still be included with the addition of formal jackets or blazers. Other pandemic trends such as exercising more, booming pet ownership and taking up arts and crafts have seen sports bra, pet accessories and hobby kits added to the basket.The ONS also said that the rising popularity of meat alternatives among younger generations, driven by growing social responsibility and health awareness, meant that meat-free sausages will also be added for the first time.
The cost of living is at a 30 year high of 5.5% and is soon set to climb to 7% fuelled by energy price rises. But the ONS's calculations have come under fire for failing to reflect the average shopping basket of low income households.In response a new and improved methodology is on the way. From 2024 the ONS will get a far wider range of price data straight from supermarket tills. This will make it easier to see how quickly value and premium brand prices are rising.
Other stories to keep you in the loop
Rules over: All UK travel rules to end on Friday, says government
Oil trip: Boris Johnson plans Saudi Arabia visit to seek oil supply increase
Pumping prices: Petrol to hit £2.50 per litre and diesel £3, experts warn MPs
Surge pricing: Uber fares to rise in UK as 20% VAT rate is applied
Locked out: China’s new Covid-19 lockdown could delay the next iPhone
Trouble brewing: BrewDog CEO hired private investigators over alleged smear campaign
Mansion takeover: Police oust squatters from Russian oligarch's London mansion
Severely delayed: Does a practice breakdown mean Crossrail is near?
TECHBritish chip designer plans jobs cuts after failed US bidA month after the collapse of its $75bn takeover, Arm has announced it will cut up to 15% of its global workforce or 1,000 staff.The British tech giant employs 6,400 people worldwide with 3,500 based in the UK. It said that most the redundancies would be in the UK and US and was part of a 'cost discipline' exercise.Arm designs rather than manufactures chips - the essential components in the “brain” of every electronic device in the world. Its designs are core to most of the world’s smartphones and it's growing its presence in computing competing with the likes of Intel and it’s widely viewed as one of the most successful British tech exports. In February the takeover from US chipmaker Nvidia was finally shelved after months of opposition from regulators in the US, UK, EU, Australia and China. There were widespread concerns that a merger – that would have been the largest of its kind in history – would allow Nvidia to limit chip supplies and increase prices to Arm customers like Google, Samsung and Microsoft.Arm’s owner, Japanese tech group Softbank, said it would instead look to take the company public on the New York Stock Exchange - much to the dismay of the British government and Daily Mail which has launched a campaign to get it floated in London.Persuading Softbank to list Arm in London it would be a major win. Post Brexit the UK has been trying to position itself as a major player in the high growth global tech sector, but a lack of publicly listed tech firms has weakened this credibility.
Stat of the day
Three in five over-50s have left the workforce sooner than planned since the pandemic started
Interesting links from around the web
7 ways companies can ease the transition from remote to hybrid work
Why in life, as in Wordle, success often depends on where you start
10 skills you need to land a top job in 2022, according to Glassdoor