Andrew Whiffin

UK finance minister George Osborne will outline the next round of cuts to public services today in his Autumn Statement and Spending Review. A number of countries have cut public spending as a share of GDP since 2010.France and Italy are two that have seen an increase

Ever since the Open Era began in 1968, we can identify the individuals and their periods of success. First came Laver, Rosewall and Newcombe; next was Borg’s reign, bookended by Connors, McEnroe and Lendl. Wilander and Becker ushered in the ’90s before giving way to Sampras and Agassi.

Federer, Nadal and now Djokovic have run the show since then, but there is no heir apparent. The average age of the ATP top 10 is 29.7 — the highest it has ever been — with an unprecedented five of its current members aged over 30. Read more

Andrew Whiffin

Global deaths from terrorism rose by 80 per cent in 2014 to 32,658, terrorism is highly concentrated in just five countries; Iraq, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria, which accounted for 78 per cent of those deaths

Andrew Whiffin

The UK is phasing out its coal power plants. Over the past year generation from coal has fallen from 28 per cent to 21 per cent of the total. Wind and solar have taken up most of the slack, rising from 8 per cent to almost 15.

Valentina Romei

A weak euro is good news for eurozone exporters, especially Greece, Germany, Finland and Ireland, which rely on buyers outside the zone for over 60 per cent of goods exports. The Netherlands and Portugal, exporting mostly to eurozone neighbours are less likely to be affected

The last time athletics was engulfed by doping concerns of the volume seen last week was the 1980s, when performance enhancing substances including testosterone were commonplace among elite competitors.

This doping dark age left a mark still visible today in the form of records set decades ago that are still yet to be broken – and in some cases yet even to be approached. Read more

Valentina Romei

India should be a good strategic trade partner for the UK. With an economic growth faster then China – set to top seven per cent this year, a rapidly improving business environment and a large Indian-born population resident in the UK, it seems the perfect target market for UK companies.

Except that it is not. Read more

A dozen games into the new Premier League season, Chelsea’s title defence has been anaemic, and few — if any — saw it coming. But with the aid of hindsight, shots data and the Elo ratings system, we can obtain a clue as to exactly when their troubles began: January 1 2015. Read more

Valentina Romei

“America’s labour market is not working” wrote Martin Wolf this week in a column analysing the poor performance of the country’s labour force participation rate. In a recent blog post we investigated possible reasons of the fall only to find that participation rates shrank among all demographic, education or civil-status groups.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics- which produces the participation numbers – does not compile data on reasons for inactivity, but the US Census Bureau could fill the knowledge gap, as it tabulates the reasons why people did or did not work in previous years. However, this data is much more difficult to access than that of the BLS and consequently less frequently used and quoted. Read more

Emily Cadman

Bank watchers are already taking deep breaths ahead of the deluge of information set to hit on the Bank of England’s second “Super Thursday”.

In the last big set piece UK monetary policy event of the year, we will get: Read more

Andrew Whiffin

The abolition of China’s one child policy is set to boost the population over the decades. Using projections from the UN, this could make the difference of up to 100m extra workers by 2050

Valentina Romei

Chinese cross-border merger and acquisition deals are rising and China is taking its place as a leading global investor alongside the advanced economies. But the targets of Chinese acquisitions are changing. Once dominated by commodities, they are increasingly composed of technology, finance, automobile, and real estate companies.

The amount invested by Chinese companies for mergers and acquisitions abroad in the first 10 months of this year has already reached what was invested in the whole of last year, which was in turn 7 per cent higher than in 2013. Read more

Valentina Romei

Halloween has arrived, boosting kids’ morale and global pumpkin production. Both the success of the Halloween festivities, characterised by carving pumpkins in monster shapes, and the high nutritious value of pumpkins have been driving production growth in the last two decades.

In 2013 nearly 25 million tonnes of pumpkins and squash were produced around the world, about double the amount produced twenty years before. Read more

Valentina Romei

The average time needed to start a business around the globe has more than halved from 51 days in 2003 to 20 days this year, according to the 2016 edition of the World Bank “Doing Business“. Read more

Valentina Romei

Nearly eight in 10 African employees in the private sector in South Africa are unskilled or semi-skilled workers. Only a few have top or senior management positions. By contrast, two in five white employees are in top, senior or middle-management positions.

Sarah O'Connor

David Cameron, Britain’s prime minister, said racial discrimination in the job market was “disgraceful” earlier this month, prompting observers to wonder what exactly he planned to do about it. On Monday he announced a plan: to introduce “name-blind” recruitment for youngsters in much of the public sector, and encourage employers in the private sector to do the same. Blind recruitment is an idea that has been gaining ground as policymakers and employers worry about social mobility and homogeneous workforces. Is it necessary and does it work? Here’s a quick Q&A.

Q: Is racial discrimination really a problem in the UK labour market?  Read more

Valentina Romei

Coffee production in Vietnam doubled in the last 10 years making the country the world’s second-largest producer after Brazil. With over 27 million 60-kg bags produced annually, Vietnam accounts for 20 per cent of world coffee output, up from 5 per cent just twenty years ago.

 Read more

Valentina Romei

Nearly two in five adults in Great Britain perceive David Cameron as more competent than Jeremy Corbyn, opposition Labour Leader. The share rises to more than half of the over-60s. But Corbyn is seen as more trustworthy, especially among young people.

Chris Giles

UK and German passport holders have visa-free access to 173 countries and rank in first place for global travel freedom. Turkey is the only OECD country outside the top 30, with visa-free travel for its citizens to only 102 nations.