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Russia joined by China for biggest 'war games' since Soviet era

Russia joined by China for biggest 'war games' since Soviet era

World
Agne Gaidyte, news reporterRussia has started its biggest "war games" since the end of the Soviet Union, which are said to involve almost 300,000 troops, more than 1,000 aircraft, 36,000 tanks and military vehicles, and dozens of warships.The huge week-long exercise, called Vostok 2018, is being held in eastern Siberia near the border with China, and also includes the Chinese army.Beijing is sending about 3,200 troops, 900 combat vehicles and 30 aircraft to join the drills at a firing range.It is being seen as a significant deployment that reflects its shift towards a full-fledged military alliance with Russia. Mongolia also has sent a military contingent.NATO has criticised the drills as a rehearsal for a "large-scale military conflict".The show of military power includes Russia's Iskande...
UK unemployment at lowest since 1975

UK unemployment at lowest since 1975

Business
UK unemployment fell by 65,000 to 1.36 million in three months to June - the lowest for more than 40 years, official figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.They also show a rise in productivity, but a slowdown in wage growth.Wages, excluding bonuses, grew by 2.7% in the three months to June, compared with a year ago. The ONS figures also showed the number of European Union nationals working in the UK fell by a record amount.The fall was the largest annual amount since records began in 1997. It UK unemployment at lowest since 1975 continues a trend seen since the 2016 Brexit vote.That contrasted with a rise in the number of non-EU nationals working in the UK to 1.27 million - 74,000 more than a year earlier.The CBI said the size of the ...
RBS plans first dividend since 2008 bailout

RBS plans first dividend since 2008 bailout

Business
The Royal Bank of Scotland plans to pay a dividend of 2p to shareholders - its first since the 2008 bailout. But the final decision is subject to RBS' legal settlement with the US Department of Justice over its probe into the banking group's packaging and sale of mortgage-backed securities before the 2008 financial crisis.The banking group said: "We intend to declare an interim dividend of 2p per ordinary share."Declaration of the interim dividend is subject to the timing of finalisation of the previously announced civil settlement in principle with the DoJ (Dept of Justice) in relation to the DoJ's investigation into RBS's issuance and underwriting of US RMBS (residential mortgage-backed securities)."We expect to finalise the settlement with the DoJ and will make a fu...
Ella Mai is the first Brit to top the US R&B chart since 1992

Ella Mai is the first Brit to top the US R&B chart since 1992

Entertainment
For the first time in more than a quarter of a century, a British singer has topped the US R&B chart.Ella Mai, a 23-year-old from south London, is currently at number one with Boo'd Up, a soulful infatuation anthem she first released last year.It makes her the first Brit to reach the summit since Lisa Stansfield hit number one with All Woman in 1992."1992, before I was born," she tweeted after being told the news. "First in my lifetime. INSANE!"Fellow Brits Charli XCX, Paul McCartney and Kyla have recently appeared as featured artists on US R&B number ones, but Ella Mai is the first to reach the peak as a lead artist for 26 years.Boo'd Up, which originally featured on Ella Mai's six-song Ready EP last February, has had a slow rise to the top - receiving a recent boost when Nicki Mi...
Wage growth at weakest level since January

Wage growth at weakest level since January

Business
There has been a further slowdown in the rate of pay growth, as the Bank of England mulls the timing of an interest rate rise. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported that average weekly wages, excluding bonuses, rose by 2.7% in the three months to May.That was down from 2.8% the previous month and its peak of 2.9% between January and March.According to the ONS, the 2.7% figure marked the slowest rate of wage growth since it reported salary progress in JanuaryHowever, it did report another new record for employment - with the proportion of people in work hitting 75.7% after 137,000 jobs were created over the three months. Image: Employment has remained ahead of most forecasts The performance failed to aid the jobless rate, wh...