The amount Americans spend during the Black Friday sales that follow Thanksgiving Thursday more than doubled from $26bn in 2005 to $61.4bn in 2013.


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Emily Cadman

How well is Britain’s economy doing? The default answer has always been to look at GDP – which is why legions of city analysts are anxiously hunched over their screens at precisely 9.30am every quarter.

But over the past decade there has been widespread acceptance that this headline number doesn’t adequately describe whether most people are in fact feeling better off. Read more


Average fuel consumption of new US cars has risen by a quarter over the past seven years to just over 25 miles per gallon, which is well below the average for Europe which is closer to 50 mpg.


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The UK’s information technology sector could be about 40 per cent bigger than previously though, with at least 70,000 more ICT companies in operation.

That’s according to the National Institute of Economic and Social Research who have come up with a pretty novel way of measuring the size of Britain’s tech sector using one of the industry’s most hyped concepts ‘big data’.

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Keith Fray


Ed Milliband, leader of the UK Labour party, has the lowest voter satisfaction rating this close to an election of any opposition leader in the past 40 years, according to Ipsos Mori. In this period, Margaret Thatcher had the lowest rating of those who became prime minister.


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Europe’s producers of pears are leaving crops to rot because of retaliation by Russia, the biggest buyer of European pears, against sanctions.

Many growers say it is cheaper not to harvest any but the most perfect fruit in a year when, according to Mintec, the commodities research and data group, overall production in Europe is estimated at 2.27m tonnes, down 2 per cent year-on-year from high output levels of 2013. Read more