Mood – Following suit (4/10)

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As the Bank of England follows America’s Federal Reserve in raising interest rates, other actions are being replicated. As US figures show two job openings for every unemployed person, 1.8m British vacancies are up for grabs and accountants PwC are to let staff knock off early on Fridays. A Nottinghamshire police and crime commissioner who pledged to crack down on speeding has been caught breaking a 30mph limit five times in four months.

JOINING BANDWAGONS

Corporates are running with herds, with Shell’s profits surging on the back of soaring oil prices and Next’s sales increasing 21% as shoppers return but Domino’s Pizza’s UK sales dropping  due to tightening household budgets. BAE Systems expects the Ukraine war to ratchet up European countries’ expenditure on weapons after Germany announced a significant step-up. Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison is  joining the funders for Elon Musk’s bid for Twitter. Bolivia is copying a Brazilian programme to reward prisoners who read by releasing them before their due dates. An anthem about crows has become a favourite chant of angry Sri Lankans.

GOING AGAINST THE GRAIN

Contrarian forces do exist, with Hungary objecting to the EU’s proposed ban on Russian oil imports. Diego Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ shirt has sold for £7.1m at auction, despite claims that it’s the wrong kit. And, as a robot chef dubbed R2-D-Chew by headline-writers imitates the human eating process to create tastier food, American shoppers are asking why their crisps come in such boring flavours.

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