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Live news: UK economy to shrink 1.3% next year, KPMG says

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Bennie Thompson and Liz Cheney, chair and vice-chair of the committee investigating the January 6 2021 attacks on the Capitol
Bennie Thompson and Liz Cheney, chair and vice-chair of the committee investigating the January 6 2021 attacks on the Capitol © AP

We are well and truly into the holiday season with Christmas rounding out the next seven days. But there is still serious work to be done.

Washington’s January 6 committee has named Wednesday as the date it plans to present its report on the storming of the US Capitol in 2021 and to vote on whether to bring any criminal proceedings for those involved.

Only a fraction of the material gathered in the 18-month investigation will make it to the final eight-chapter report. Attention is expected to focus on evidence uncovered about former president Donald Trump’s role and his efforts to overturn his 2020 electoral loss, along with ways to prevent a repeat attack.

Further strike action will disrupt the UK working week in the run-up to the Christmas holidays. Nurses are due to go on strike again on Tuesday. Also on that day, on the eve of the first planned ambulance strike, expected to involve up to 10,000 workers, the national secretary of the GMB, one of the unions involved in the action, has been called to give evidence to MPs in Westminster about that dispute, alongside NHS and ambulance service executives, to explain what is behind it and why a resolution has not been found.

It is not just strike action reminiscent of the 1970s that is giving the British a blast from its past. On Sunday, the nation will be going back to something last heard in the 1950s: a national yuletide address from a king. Charles III will have a lot to live up to when he delivers his first Christmas message on Sunday afternoon given Queen Elizabeth’s mastery of the medium. Maybe he’s hoping this king’s speech will be as surprising a hit as its big screen namesake was almost 12 years ago.

Economic data

The economic news will be drip fed over the next few days, after the rush of interest and inflation rate announcements last week. The Bank of Japan will announce its latest monetary policy move while the US and the UK provide their final best estimates of the latest quarter’s GDP movements, with expectations of recession on a lot of people’s minds.

Companies

A trickle of results this week. In the wake of the World Cup, where its logo has been plastered over football shirts and boots, Nike will be hoping to please its investors with a second-quarter results announcement on Tuesday. The world’s largest sportswear maker has been grappling with questions of balance in its progressive marketing campaigns (I’m not sure whether its involvement with Fifa Qatar 2022 helped with that) having lost its second diversity officer in as many years this summer.

Bunzl is generally considered a dull but worthy business, featuring in the financial press once every six months. And this could be its week. The provider of hard hats, beard guards and disposable cutlery is expected to confirm a good end to its financial year when it provides a trading update on Wednesday with good revenue growth, supported by numerous acquisitions announced over the past 12 months.

Finally, Tuesday is the deadline set by a High Court judge for UK power supplier Octopus Energy to take over its collapsed rival Bulb. Justice Zacaroli confirmed the deal could be approved via the energy transfer scheme. But the controversy is far from over. Rival suppliers Eon, British Gas and Scottish Power have until this date to mount any legal challenges. Last week Centrica warned that the deal risks breaching EU state aid rules. That could mean the European Commission getting involved.

Read the full week ahead calendar here.



Read More: Live news: UK economy to shrink 1.3% next year, KPMG says

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