Valentina Romei

Global real food prices rose by 4 per cent in June over the previous month- the fifth consecutive rise and the largest monthly increase since July 2012. But food price levels are still 25 lower than in March 2008.

Keith Fray

When Margaret Thatcher became the first female UK premier in 1979 only 3 per cent of MPs were women. The share is 10 times higher now. But the number of female MPs since 1918 – at 452- is lower than the number of men in parliament today.

Valentina Romei

The majority of EU population plans to spend the 2016 holidays at home, the largest proportion being Greeks. Foreign trips are more popular in the UK, Germany and Belgium, where more than eight in 10 people plan to travel abroad.

John Burn-Murdoch

Stage 9 of the 2016 Tour de France shows Team Sky’s tactics at their clinical best. Sky’s star-studded support group of five mountain specialists ruthlessly drove the pace of the peloton, sacrificing themselves one by one as they shed riders from the back of the group until team leader Chris Froome was able to go clear with only a handful of othersGoing in to the race, Froome’s imperial guard of Mikel Landa, Mikel Nieve, Wout Poels, Sergio Henao and Geraint Thomas had four mountain stage wins and seven top-ten general classification finishes in grand tours, as well as more than a dozen other victories in road cycling’s second tier of races. In almost any other team, any of these riders would be a team leader. Read more

Valentina Romei

Seven years after the financial crisis, Italy’s property market has still not recovered. House prices in the country fell 1.2 per cent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2016, the only drop among major EU countries. In contrast, house prices in the region expanded at an average of 4 per cent over the same period.

  Read more

By Richard Dobbs and Anu Madgavkar (McKinsey & Company)

Since the end of World War II, people in advanced economies could rightly assume that they and their children would grow up to be better off than their parents and grandparents. With the exception of the stagflation period in the 1970s, almost all households experienced rising incomes, both before and after taxes and transfers, thanks to strong GDP and employment growth. Read more

Valentina Romei

The IMF forecasts advance nations to grow at 1.8 per cent this year, down from 2.4 per cent forecast last year. Spain is expected to grow faster than the US while UK growth is revised down to 1.7 per cent. Japan is set for almost no gain.

Britain’s House of Commons has voted resoundingly in favour of renewing the country’s nuclear deterrent, the Trident submarine programme, to the bitter disappointment of the 177 MPs who voted against it and the delight of the 472 in favour.

But internal politics aside, the vote should hardly come as a surprise: no nuclear weapon-possessing country is preparing to give up its nuclear arsenal for the foreseeable future. Read more

Keith Fray

Black Lives Matter has organised protests in the US at the deaths of African-Americans from police actions. A survey from Pew Research shows broad support (43 per cent with 22 per cent opposing), but with significant differences between whites and blacks and, among whites, between Democrats and Republicans

Keith Fray

Austerity – reducing public spending – was the defining policy of the UK government from 2010.

Spending fell by six percentage points of GDP, with many departmental budgets cut by a quarter. Read more

Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit Broadway musical “Hamilton” has been arguably the hottest tickets to ever hit Broadway. According to its producers, Hamilton broke records for pre-sales before its Broadway debut last summer, and recently, producers raised the price of 200 premium tickets from $475 to $849, making it the most expensive premium ticket on the Great White Way.

So it’s no surprise that prices on the secondary market have been similarly off the charts. While tickets going for more than $300 may have seemed expensive when it first opened, prices that cheap have been difficult to find in recent months.

Ticket prices reached a high point last Saturday for Miranda’s last performance as title character Alexander Hamilton. Tickets on StubHub were listed (not necessarily sold) for as high as $60,000 and $30,000 after fees. But in the few hours before the performance, ticket prices across the board began dropping. Read more

Valentina Romei

Satisfaction with how Britain’s government was running the country started rising in spring 2013, but declined over the past year. After the Brexit poll it reached its lowest level since David Cameron became premier six years ago.

Bad debt has piled up for years, notably in the construction sector Read more

Valentina Romei

The UK is now the second-largest economy with a female head of government, after Germany. Women-led countries produce about 15 per cent of global GDP, which will rise to 40 per cent if Hilary Clinton becomes US president.

Valentina Romei

House prices in the EU rose at an annual rate of four per cent in the first quarter of this year, but with big variations. The UK persistently shows strong price rises, while the trend was flat in France and house prices continue to shrink in Italy.

Valentina Romei

Satisfaction with US presidential candidates is at its lowest in two decades. In June, less than half of the population was satisfied with the choice of Clinton or Trump, compared with 72 per cent for Obama in 2008, say Pew data.

John Burn-Murdoch

English football must stop outsourcing creativity. The most prolific assisters in the recent history of the Premier League all come from overseas. As a result, England struggle to break down organised defences in international tournamentsEnglish football has always loved its powerful forwards, hard-running fullbacks and no-nonsense centre-backs. Even a quick-footed winger or tricky attacking midfielder can get an English crowd on its feet.

But one role has yet to be embraced in the same way by a bulk of English football fans: that of the playmaker, often found — God forbid — moving the ball sideways or backwards, but capable of dissecting a defence with a pinpoint pass, releasing an onrushing teammate into space that moments earlier was nonexistent.

The Premier League has had countless examples of genius playmakers: Mesut Özil, David Silva, Cesc Fabregas at his peak to name just three of the most recent. But English names are conspicuous by their absence. Read more

John Burn-Murdoch

Women are closing the gap on men in tennis prize money, with some now out-earning their counterparts. At almost every rung on the earnings ladder, the prize money gap is shrinking. The one exception is at the very top, where Novak Djokovic is so dominant that he pockets an outsized share of the ATP prize pot, putting him well ahead of Serena Williams, the top-earning women’s player so far in 2016The winners of the women’s and men’s singles tournaments at Wimbledon this year each receive £2m, making this the tenth successive year of equal prize money for the champions of each sex.

But although it might look like women’s and men’s tennis players now compete on a level financial playing field, true parity is still a long way off. In 2015 the top 100 men — as ranked by prize money — earned a total of $124.7m from singles tournaments, compared to $94.7m across the top 100 women.

So why the disparity? Read more

Valentina Romei

Latest figures showed a strong rise in US employment in June, with 287,000 extra jobs significantly above the average of 204,000 in the previous 12 months. However, the overall labour market picture is mixed. The unemployment rate rose 0.2 percentage points to 4.9 per cent, and labour force participation remains a crucial concern.

Even among those of prime working age participation rates remains low, over three percentage points lower than at the turn of the century. Read more

Keith Fray

For most EU countries, the UK is more important as an export market than as a source of imports. In only three member states- Ireland, Cyprus and Malta- does trade with the UK form a higher share of imports than exports.