Jamie Vardy’s record-setting Premier League goalscoring streak for Leicester City has been hailed as one of the most remarkable individual achievements of modern English football, but how does it compare to similar feats elsewhere?

Many have pointed out that Vardy’s run of scoring in 11 successive top flight English matches remains behind that of Jimmy Dunne, who made it to 12 for Sheffield United in 1931/32.

But given how much the game has changed over the intervening 60-plus years in terms of tactics, fitness and other factors, perhaps a better way of contextualising his record is to compare it to those of his contemporaries. Read more

Valentina Romei

UK public approval for the Royal Air Force taking part in air strikes against Isis in Syria fell to 48 per cent from 59 last week, according to a YouGov poll released yesterday. Opposition to the air strikes rose 11 percentage points to 31 per cent.

Keith Fray

The renminbi was this week accepted by the IMF into the basket of elite currencies used to calculate the fund’s reserve asset, the Special Drawing Right. Although largely symbolic, the move reflects China’s progress towards full integration with the global financial system.

Valentina Romei

Japan is officially back into recession as its economy shrank for the second consecutive period in the third quarter this year.

Japan’s economy – along with Italy- performs poorly in comparison with other G7 countries. In 2020 both economies are forecast to be just 20 per cent larger than they were in the in the 1990s, compared to the doubling of GDP in the US and Canada. Read more

Americans spent more than $1bn shopping from their desktops on Thanksgiving Day in 2014. But that was only half of what they spent the following Monday, dubbed ‘Cyber Monday’ for its exclusive online sales deals.

Valentina Romei

George Osborne, the UK chancellor, announced in Wednesday’s Autumn Statement the “biggest housebuilding programme since the 1970s”. This included 400,000 new affordable homes in England by 2020, a 3% stamp duty increase for buy-to-let and second home buyers, and a new help-to-buy scheme just for London. The measures are aimed at tackling the “crisis in home ownership in Britain”. Read more

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

Valentina Romei

This year’s report from the European Commission on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) shows that attracting customers remained the most pressing problem for firms in 2014, but less so than in previous years. The proportion of firms citing skilled staff and regulation as major problems has increased since 2011. Read more

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

Valentina Romei

Marriott has announced the acquisition of rival Starwood. Both are among the top five largest hotel groups and the planned purchase would make the combined company the uncontested top global hotel player.

Valentina Romei

Chinese ecommerce company Alibaba accounted for 14 per cent of global retail sales value in 2015. That was a sharp rise from 1 per cent only five years ago. Amazon is still the biggest player, but its market share is only marginally higher than in 2010, while eBay lost ground.

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

Global cruise passengers topped 22 million last year according to the Cruise Lines International Association, up from 13 million ten years before. The majority are from North America, but the number of passengers grew faster in Europe and the rest of the world.

Valentina Romei

All ethnic minority groups in the UK are now significantly more likely to go to university than their white British counterparts. On average, amongst the cohort who sat their GCSEs in 2008, only one third of the white British population went to university in the academic year 2010-11 or 2011-12, compared to 75 per cent of ethnic Chinese pupils and 67 per cent of Indian students. Read more

Valentina Romei

The share of the Eurozone population reporting that the single currency is a good thing stood at 61 per cent in the latest annual survey from Eurobarometer, up 4 percentage points from the previous year, and compared with 45 per cent in 2007. This is the highest level since Eurobarometer started tracking support in 2002. 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

Keith Fray

Global energy is expected to shift further toward China and, especially, India in the next quarter century, according to the latest forecasts. By 2040 India’s demand should approach that of the US.