Mothercare is crawling towards a recovery as chief executive Simon Calver insisted the UK company was on target to break even within two years.
The boss of Flybe has hit out at "punitive" charges and taxes that have pushed the troubled regional airline to end flights in and out of London from next March.
Global investors grew skittish on Thursday as concerns about reduced central bank easing and slower growth in China rattled Japan and other markets that have registered large gains this year on the back of loose monetary policies.
The updated figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that the UK's dominant services sector, which accounts for three quarters of national output, drove the recovery - growing 0.6pc over the three months.
Pre-tax profits were �97m in the six months to the end of March, compared with �37m last year. Total turnover was flat year-on-year at �866m.