Business news 10 April 2024

UK the world’s fourth largest exporter. Labour plans to replace business rates with property taxes. Standardised operating profit figures, 4 day week, investment fraud, tax gap, insolvencies & more business news that we thought would interest our members.

James Salmon, Operations Director.

UK the world’s fourth largest exporter

The UK has become the world’s fourth largest exporter, according to statistics from the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The UK, which ranked seventh in 2021, has overtaken France, Netherlands and Japan to take fourth position in the figures for exporting goods and services in 2022, coming in behind only China, the US, and Germany. This is largely due to the UK’s strength in services exports, which increased to a record high of £470bn last year. Business and Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch said the UNCTAD figures “show how the UK is punching above its weight on trade, and is on track to reach our ambition of exporting a trillion pounds of goods and services a year by 2030.”

Labour plans to replace business rates with property taxes

Labour has promised to replace business rates with a system of business property taxation. As part of measures designed to level the playing field between high street businesses and online retailers and “breathe new life” into the UK’s high streets, Labour has also announced plans to bring in new laws to end late payments and introduce banking hubs to tackle the decline of in-person bank services.

Companies to publish standardised operating profit figures by 2027

Companies will have to publish standardised operating profit figures from 2027 under new requirements from the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB). The IASB, which writes book-keeping rules for companies across 147 countries, aims to end the discretion of companies to decide what constitutes operating profit in their income statement. Currently, many companies report earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA), a figure that is not defined under IASB rules and can be compiled in different ways. The new IASB rules define mandatory sub-totals for operating profit, which will include depreciation, amortisation, and impairment on goodwill, and profit before financing and income taxes. Common adjustments, such as for currency fluctuations, can only be included in footnotes to the statement.

Four-day week ‘risks widening inequalities’

A four-day working week risks “widening existing inequalities”, according to analysis commissioned by the Welsh government ahead of a potential pilot scheme. The group tasked with assessing the working pattern said: “Given the different gender, race and other characteristics of different workforces in the public sector, there is potential for negative and differential impacts on particular protected characteristics.” Among suggestions put to the Welsh government, the group recommended using the terms “shorter working week” or “shorter working day” as a “four-day week” could be “widely misinterpreted and taken in its literal sense.” Future Generations Commissioner Derek Walker is among those who have backed calls for a four-day week pilot, saying: “An outdated industrial age model means the time is ripe to explore how things can be done differently.”

£612m lost through investment fraud in a year

Data from Action Fraud shows that £612,208,663 was lost to investment fraud in the UK last year. Action Fraud said that from January 2023 to January 2024 there were 30,130 reports of investment fraud, with the average loss per victim coming in at £25,110. City of London Police data shows that one victim lost a total of £11.9m. Cryptocurrency was the most common commodity victims believed they were investing in and accounted for 40% of all reports, while unspecified trading and stocks and shares collectively accounted for 10%. It was also shown that 861 reports included the names of social media or influential personalities to persuade investors to make investments. Separate analysis by the Pensions Management Institute shows that more than £2.6bn has been stolen through investment fraud in the UK since the start of 2020. Figures from City of London Police’s National Fraud Intelligence Bureau show there were 98,525 victims of investment fraud between January 2020 and December 2023, with victims losing an average of £26,773.

Study warns of ‘lack of transparency’ over interest charges

Analysis by MoneyComms suggests that millions of people could be paying thousands of pounds worth of interest charges on personal loans due to a “lack of transparency” from lenders. Under current regulations, banks only need to provide 51% of customers with an advertised offer and the representative or advertised rate is the lowest rate that the minimum percentage of customers will pay. However, most of the time customers are not given the advertised rate as they do not have a good enough credit score. The research conducted for TotallyMoney shows that for a typical £3,000 personal loan with a subprime 69.9% APR, a lower credit score of around 400-500 could end up adding £2,499 worth of interest over 36 months. This means repayments would total £5,958. A £5,000 loan could attract an extra £3,942 in interest, while a £10,000 loan might see a borrower paying back an additional £13,541.

Labour pledges to close £36bn tax gap

Labour has pledged to close the £36bn tax gap by cracking down on the non-dom tax status loophole and bolstering HMRC’s compliance squads. Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves said her party’s tax plan, including a new target to recoup £5.1bn a year, “will give HMRC the resource it needs to go after those who are avoiding or evading tax and to modernise the tax office so we have a system fit for purpose.” Labour’s measures include investing up to £555m a year in HMRC to boost tax collection, increasing the number of compliance officers by up to 5,000, and bringing in AI. Legal and regulatory changes could also be introduced, including potentially requiring more tax schemes to be reported to HMRC. The plan would raise a net £700m in 2025/26 and reach £5.1bn by the end of the next parliament, while closing the non-dom loophole could raise £2.6bn within five years.

Ms Reeves told BBC Breakfast: “This isn’t rocket science – previous governments have managed to close that tax gap.” Labour analysis suggests that the gap between the amount of tax owed and the amount of tax actually collected by the Government amounted to £36bn in 2021/22. Chief Secretary to the Treasury Laura Trott questioned Labour’s plans, adding that the Conservatives have introduced over 200 measures to clamp down on tax non-compliance and are “sticking to the plan to strengthen the economy so we can cut taxes.”

Labour appoints expert panel to tackle tax avoidance

Labour has appointed an expert panel to advise the party on ways to tackle tax avoidance and how to modernise the tax office, which has come under fire from MPs for failing to claw back vast sums that are owed. Sir Edward Troup, a former Treasury special adviser on tax and head of HMRC, will be joined on the panel by Bill Dodwell, former tax director of the Office for Tax Simplification and a retired senior accountant at Deloitte. The group will also include Dame Margaret Hodge, a former chair of parliament’s Public Accounts Committee. Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves wants HMRC staff return to the office, warning that a work from home culture at the tax office is causing the loss of millions of pounds in tax revenue due to unanswered phone calls. She told Sky News that the panel will make recommendations on how to modernise HMRC “and make it a better experience for people phoning up … who are often left hanging on the phone.”


Tesco attributed buoyant sales volume growth across the UK and Ireland to an easing off of inflationary pressure in today’s preliminary results. Group sales (excluding VAT and fuel) increased to £61.5 billion, marking a year-on-year growth rate of 7.4%, or 7.2% at constant currency rates. Operating profit was up 18.8% to £2.8 billion. Tesco sold the majority of its banking operations to Barclays in the period; the pared-back offering, comprising insurance and money services, enjoyed a 213% rise in operating profit to £69 million.


The oil price steadied this morning after two straight days of losses, as the deadlock in Gaza ceasefire talks renewed uncertainty about the security of supplies from the Middle East, offsetting a bigger-than-expected build in US crude inventories.

Thames Water

The government made a direct appeal to investors to support the troubled water giant (supplier to a quarter of England including London) and help avoid taking it into special administration. The move came after industry watchdog Ofwat rejected Thames’s next five-year plan, which would raise bills 40% to cover the cost of replacing crumbling infrastructure and servicing the company’s debt.


TSMC’s quarterly revenue beat  expectations to grow 16%, on the back of an AI boom is fueling demand for high-end chips.


Apple now builds 1 in 7 iPhones in India as it diversifies away from China.

Latest Insolvencies

Appointment of Liquidators – LINCFRAME PROPERTIES LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – THE MARTELLO ADVISORY LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – WHEELS OF STRATEGY LIMITED
Winding up Order (Companies) – MAJESTIK CARE LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – PHIL HOWARD RENEWABLES LTD
Appointment of Administrator – TAILIFY SOFTWARE LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – FUTUREFUEL OPERATIONS LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – LOUKATOU MEDICAL LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – KENDALL VARLEY LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – PERDIX INVESTMENTS LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – SHINE CODING LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – KINGSDOWN RIDING CENTRE LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – WETFIELD LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – FORMULA PROPERTIES LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – ALBRO PROPERTIES LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – VIRTUALBENCH LIMITED
Winding up Order (Companies) – LIPOLOGY ACADEMY LIMITED
Appointment of Administrator – VERSA ACCOUNTANTS LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – BOATHOUSE PROPERTIES LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – TICK INTERIORS LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – MAZE UTILITIES LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – M PRO FINANCE LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – MKS CONSTRUCTION SERVICES LTD
Appointment of Administrator – CITY BUSINESS SOLUTIONS UK LTD
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – MGS BUILDING LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – EMMERSON ARCHITECTS LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – TZSK THIRD LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – BRAINGLOW LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – RWR CONTRACT MANAGEMENT LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – DAS ASSOCIATES (UK) LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – LATEBIND CONSULTING LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – PORTABELLA CF11 LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – CLEAN PRO LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – GREYFRIARS HOLDCO
Appointment of Liquidators – COMMERZ PEARL LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – FIRST LINCOLN INVESTMENTS LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – GRANDLINE PLASTERING LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – FIRST ENDEAVOUR LLP
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – MOVE STORE (GLASGOW) LTD
Appointment of Administrator – CONVERGE-IT.NET LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – PC VANS LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – KJL OPERATIONS LIMITED
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – ISMAIL CONVENIENCE STORE LTD
Appointment of Administrator – SPROUT TECHNOLOGIES LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – STEVE DANN LIMITED
Appointment of Liquidators – COMPEAN LTD
Petitions to wind up (Companies) – MEDWAY FOOD CENTRE LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – BREVHAM LTD
Appointment of Liquidators – TILLY’S HOMECARE SERVICES LTD

Why should you become a CPA member!

The Credit Protection Association (CPA) has been assisting thousands of UK businesses to get paid, since 1914. We have seen many financial crises, this one will be particularly deadly for suppliers for some time to come.

CPA eases cash from tardy debtors – Efficiently, Effectively, Economically and Ethically. And we provide credit information so you can monitor and assess your key customers.

Unlike other credit management companies, we offer our members a fixed annual subscription regardless of how high the debt value maybe!

Just call Peter Uwins, CPA’s National Sales Manager, on 020 8846 0000 (business hours) or email today.

When you see your money come in, you will be so glad you used CPA.

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections


Do you have a commercial late payer that is causing you grief? Use CPA’s no-win, no-fee, commercial debt recovery service!

If you have a particular business customer who is late paying and causing you sleepless nights, why not offer it to CPA for purchase on recourse?

CPA’s collection department will then pursue the debt. We will be liable for any costs incurred and then when we have recovered the debt, we will pay you the net principle debt recovered less our percentage.

Once you have enjoyed that success then you can consider the more cost effective membership which includes our Overdue Account Recovery service and Status/Credit reports as well as a range of other complimentary services.

Just call  020 8846 0000 and ask for Godfrey Nelson or Cris Shirley (business hours) or email today.

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections.


Get compensated for previous late payments

Have you been paid late by business customers in the last six years?

Maybe you no longer work with them. Under legislation, you are entitled to  compensation you for those late payments you have suffered.

You put up with the PAIN – now claim the GAIN!

Claim late payment compensation (LPC) from former business customers who paid you late in the last six years!

CPA (LPC) Recoveries is using our bespoke software and decades of experience to do just that for our clients

Check our compensation calculator to see how much your business could be owed!

Discover NOW the potential value of late payment compensation hidden in your sales ledger!

The Credit Protection Association – Prompting Punctual Payments – Ethical, Effective, Efficient, Economical collections.