As the power supplier announced a 5.6pc rise in annual profits to �1.4bn, Ian Marchant lashed out at critics in Westminster and said that the company suffered because of the �big numbers� in its results.
The US Federal Reserve heralded the beginning of the end for its third round of quantitative easing as Ben Bernanke said it could slow the $85bn-a-month pace of asset purchases �in the next few meetings� if the labour market is strong.
Nationwide has increased its share of the British mortgage market to a record level, helped by government-funded programmes to support housebuyers, such as the Bank of England's Funding for Lending Scheme.
Cable & Wireless Communications, the telecoms group that traces its history back to the early days of the British empire, is to leave the UK after more than 140 years and move its headquarters across the Atlantic.
There were 55 beaches deemed to have a water quality good enough to be given a flag this year, compared to 79 last year. For 2013, beaches had to meet a new �excellent� standard imposed by the EU under the EU Bathing Waters Directive.