MT's week in 60 seconds

The wheels may have fallen off the financial system, but elswhere the world kept turning...

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Last Updated: 06 Nov 2012

And so the break-up of BAA's empire begins. The airport operator announced it was selling Gatwick airport. It will be cursing the meddling Competitions Commission - could there be a worse time to be forced to offload your property portfolio?

Trouble was certainly in the air this week. And so was Alitalia, miraculously. Despite being bankrupt. The Banks' futures were hardly any more certain. And while the banks didn't know whether they were coming or going, opportunistic cybersquatters went about buying up speculative domain names, covering everything from Lloyds TSB/HBOS to barclayslehman.com.

We should have just stayed in bed for the week. Even on Monday the CBI was performing a u-turn on its previous ‘no recession' prediction, as well as forecasting soaring job cuts. We wonder what it thinks now it's Friday...

Perhaps the CBI had been given a preview of the books at Woolies. The high-street veteran set the tone for the high street by posting a record £100m half-year loss and scrapping its dividend. So what can retailers do to compete? Diversify, says Sainsbury's, which now offers an in-store dentist. That's how to kick a recession in the teeth.

There are no shiny white smiles around St James Park these days. This week Newcastle United's troubled fans forced owner Mike Ashley to erect the For Sale sign, and to do the rounds of Dubai's sheesha bars in a vain bid to find a buyer.

In these troubled times, it seems, making money is an art form. Literally. At least good old Damien Hirst could be called upon to show us how it's done. He made £96m this week in two days, for a collection that included yet more of his animals in formaldehyde. Unfortunately, they're not the only ones in a pickle...

 

 

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