LONDON (Reuters) - British retail sales grew in July at the slowest annual rate since November of last year, while the government failed to make much of an inroad into public borrowing, data showed on Thursday.
Drugs firm AstraZeneca was the top riser on the FTSE 100 amid talk that US rival Pfizer was planning to make another approach. Earlier this year Pfizer sent shares in the sector soaring when it staged a failed �69 billion takeover attempt on Astra.
(Repeats to fix USN). * U.S. factory activity expansion speeds up. * Business activity growth slows in China and Europe. By Jonathan Cable, Xiaoyi Shao and Ryan Vlastelica.
The sun is not going down on North Sea oil yet, but the longevity and scale of supplies are hotly disputed. Photograph: Michael St Maur Sheil/Corbis.
London commuters face disruption on the underground network on Friday as train drivers take strike action over what their union described as an �increasingly bullying� management style.