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LATEST! 31st January 2014
(scroll down to see full list; previous month's (December 2013) Viewpoint; latest eBOSS contents

Scroll down for: A Home and Small Business Viewpoint by Len Tondel, from 1st January 2014

By way of explanation. The term 'home business' consists of two words. 'Business' is the second one; it's there to qualify and support the word 'home' and all that goes with it - and not vice versa. Consequently, we also list below, items which are of interest and value to the home. Whether in its context as an office or as a part of your family and lifestyle but always directed at the improved prospects and enjoyment that running a business from home, in its entirety, can bring.

For a current, multi-part overview of starting and running a business from home, go here: http://www.homebusiness.org.uk/features.htm

31.01.2014: Freebie Friday. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/31/freebie-friday-this-weeks-discounts-deals-and-freebies/

UK living standards squeeze continues. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25966075# and No sign of living standard recovery. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/31/no-sign-of-living-standard-recovery/ That be an English 'economic recovery', that be.

One in five prefers to go cashless. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2549115/One-five-prefers-cashless-Study-finds-interested-using-mobile-phones-make-payments.html So despite all the marketing bull about mobile payments, 80% of the population still prefers cash. Whereas the real reason why the remaining 20% of the population doesn't prefer cash, is because they haven't got any.

Britain's most bankrupt town. http://money.aol.co.uk/2013/11/25/the-uks-worst-bankruptcy-hotspots-revealed/?icid=maing-grid7%7Cukt1%7Cdl3%7Csec1_lnk2%26pLid%3D240210

Manchester the laziest place in Britain. http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/where-is-britains-reallife-lazytown-manchester-is-most-inactive-place-in-the-country-study-finds-9097705.html

Foreign investment in France plunges by 77%. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2549140/Foreign-investment-France-plunges-77-cent-Hollandes-socialist-policies-drive-businesses-away.html As we suggested when the present clutch of 'cons' took over office.

The Mr Big behind copycat websites. http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/jan/30/tax-return-passport-health-copycat-websites

Most confusing airports for British travellers. http://travel.aol.co.uk/2014/01/30/malaga-airport-most-confusing-airport-for-british-passengers/?icid=maing-grid7%7Cukt1%7Cdl8%7Csec1_lnk2%26pLid%3D240179 As British travellers are universally considered to be the thickest in the world, it comes as little surprise that one of the suggestions contained in this article is a pre-programmed satnav (the beep-beep kind) and a book of local rules. Which really pre-empts the question: how many British travellers these days can actually read?

Weekend Larf #1: Official release: Understanding start-up loans in England's South-West. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/understanding-localised-policy-interventions-start-up-loans-in-englands-south-west Quote. ". . . the programme has indeed supported the creation of businesses that would not otherwise have been progressed." Who would have believed that a 'start-up loan' could have achieved that? But sarcasm apart, the report, which is written in pure bollock-speak, sums up what has become more and more apparent with the present Government's delivery of business support. A Heath Robinson infrastructure where worthwhile and cost-effective delivery is of secondary importance to policy dogma, cronyism and a waste of taxpayers' money.

Weekend Larf #2: Official release: The Fiver Challenge. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/the-fiver-challenge-pupils-to-start-own-business-with-a-5-loan This is a model for a potentially successful business start-up, is it? Borrow a mere £5 from a bankrupt government? That's some template for success, that is. I'd have thought that even today's yoof would have enough nouse to actually go out into the Big World and earn a fiver. Just to put them in the frame of mind that running a business is about earning money and not going on the dole.

30.01.2014: Tax return deadline looms for 1.6 million. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/30/tax-return-deadline-looms-for-1-6m/ Wow. Pretty impressive reduction in numbers from 2.5 million just the day before yesterday. (Scroll down to 28th.)

Should I get an IVA? http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/29/the-fixer-should-i-get-an-iva/

Where to find a free overdraft. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/30/where-to-find-a-free-overdraft/

Ofcom report reveals true extent of mobile Britain. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/10602822/Ofcom-report-reveals-true-extent-of-mobile-Britain.html

OFT probe into 'misleading' free apps. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/video-games/video-game-news/9987568/OFT-launches-probe-into-misleading-free-apps.html

EU has secret plans for police to 'remote stop' cars. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/10605328/EU-has-secret-plan-for-police-to-remote-stop-cars.html

Could you build a £6500 flatpack house? http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2548375/Could-YOU-build-flatpack-house-Home-box-costs-just-6-500-But-really-easy-build-IKEA-bookcase-We-gave-one-brave-dad-week-try.html Or, a very expensive garden shed, if you prefer.

Anti-establishment French comic has over £500,000 in cash (allegedly) removed under money-laundering pretext. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2548173/French-comic-anti-semitic-quenelle-salute-500-000-CASH-removed-property-money-laundering-raid.html A dangerous escalation in minority persecution by the present socio-fascist French government, whose close relationship with Israeli extremists is a far more worrying sign of the country's lack of moral direction than the President's recently, much-reported emotional instability. Watch this space for another Coluche or Lady Di 'development' - and high time to reflect on more than just the government's rapacious, anti-small business philosophy.

(And do make allowances for the tone of this tabloid article which falls into pretty much the same category as the rest of the puppet media.)

The Seven Deadly Sins of pitching. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/23219/7-deadly-sins-pitching/

The hidden dangers of apps. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/tech/23211/hidden-dangers-apps/

29.01.2014: 180,000 building jobs in the pipeline. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/29/180-000-building-jobs-in-pipeline/

Official release: Small business, big support confirms Prime Minister. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/small-business-big-support-confirmed-by-prime-minister Adding up the multiple business support 'apps' which this Government has dreamt up so far, isn't it all costing significantly more than the country's ex-one-stop business support shop, Business Links, which was closed down not so long ago to save the taxpayer money? 'A load of apps' which are providing fewer and fewer solutions because fewer and fewer businesses can keep up with what's 'trending'? Or who is delivering what? Other than loadsa money for the latest, rapidly expanding, business support clique itself?

British public votes online shopping and internet banking biggest technological developments of 21st century. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2547612/British-public-votes-online-shopping-internet-banking-biggest-technological- developments-21st-century.html

Small firms betrayed as Lloyds culls advisers. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2547772/Small-firms-betrayed-Lloyds-culls- adviser-jobs-120-000-firms-face-having-lending-help-phone.html

Hike in packaged account complaints. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/29/hike-in-packaged-account-complaints/

UK's regional entrepreneurial hotspots. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/news/23321/new-figures-reveal-uks-regional-entrepreneurial-hotspots/

Homes heated to 4 degrees warmer than in 1970. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/household-bills/10603400/Homes-heated-at-least-4C-warmer-than-in-1970-study-finds.html

Flood insurance scheme 'must include more properties'. http://www.bpf.org.uk/en/newsroom/press_release/PR140122
_-_BPF_and_CML_warn_unexpected_exclusions_in_Water_Bill_could_leave_millions_without_affordable_flood_insurance.php

Millions of private rental properties will be excluded from the Government's 'Flood Re' plans unless 'urgent amendments' are made to the Water Bill, the British Property Federation (BPF) and Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) have warned. The scheme, which will provide owners of properties in high-risk flood areas with affordable insurance, is not available to non-domestic properties. It has been estimated that nine million properties are classed as non-domestic, including the majority of leasehold properties, as well as small and medium-sized business’ premises. Ian Fletcher, Director of Policy at the BPF, said "at a time when Government is taking so many positive steps to encourage investment in the private rented sector and promote responsibility in the sector, it seems extremely contradictory to exclude these properties from possible essential flood cover." (EnterpriseQuest)

French are 'burnt out' study finds. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/life-easy-in-land-of-the-35hour-week-generous-holidays-and-long-lunches-non-say-burntout-french-9091678.html Or, you could substitute 'English' for 'French' and the study would be equally true. Or rubbish.

Tips for selling over the phone. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/23254/tips-selling-phone/

Harnessing the power of customer feedback. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/advice/23295/harnessing-power-customer-feedback/

3 reasons you are not making money on your property business. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/23310/3-reasons-making-money-
property-business/

28.01.2014: 'Real' economic recovery under way. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/10600424/Economy-growing-at-fastest-pace-since-
financial-crisis.html

HMRC awaits further 2.5 million self-assessment returns. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25928483# All awaiting the country's 'real economic recovery' to be able to pay their taxes, no doubt.

HMRC asset seizures hit record levels. http://www.accountancylive.com/croner/jsp/Editorial.do?channelId=-601043&contentId=2924354 Seizures of assets by HMRC from self-assessed taxpayers (including many self-employed individuals) who could not pay the tax they owed reached record levels during the last tax year, according to research by IT finance provider Syscap. Researchers found that in 2012/13, asset seizures under HMRC’s power of distraint rose by 8% to 1,488 compared with 2011/12, and were double the number carried out in 2010/11. Under the power of distraint, HMRC can make unannounced visits to business premises to recover unpaid taxes and can then remove and sell business equipment such as computers without a court order if tax bills are not paid within five days. (EnterpriseQuest)

British minister to blame for red tape, not EU. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/industry/10600151/Ken-Clarke-British-ministers-to-blame-
for-red-tape-not-EU.html
It makes a welcome change for a politician to tell the truth; and an even more welcome change for the media to print the truth, as well. Or, you could just watch this space on a regular basis.

Nonetheless, many of the comments from anonymouse 'Ministers' and 'senior EU officials' which follow this article, would seem to suggest that someone who knows what he's talking about, has got it wrong.

The identity thief's ten most desirable items. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/27/the-identity-thiefs-10-most-desirable-items/

Is it time to cash in on booming house prices? http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/borrowing/mortgages/10593930/Equity-release-is-it-time-
to-cash-in-on-booming-house-prices.html

Trending: game enjoys a revival. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/10598638/Game-enjoys-a-revival-in-British-kitchens.html

Trending: French-speaking plumbers for weathy French tax exiles. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/10600331/Wanted-
French-speaking-plumbers-for-tax-exiles.html
Sure. The vast majority of wealthy French folk have received a good education and will be able to speak English. Not well, mind you. But speak it they will. Just like any university-educated Englishman, in other words.

One of the world's best-known home businesses - the Queen - down to her last million. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/queen-elizabeth-II/
10600671/Queen-down-to-her-last-million-due-to-courtiers-overspending-report-finds.html
I know the feeling.

27.01.2014: Cameron pledges action to cut red tape. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25903681# I'm amazed that this story continues to run. Surely, even this Government's advisers have realised the public and the business community have heard this promise hundreds of times already. Let alone the same promises made by previous governments. It's as bad as turning on the telly and being confronted by a choice of repeats of repeats.

Increase your pension by up to £25 a week. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/27/increase-your-pension-up-to-25-a-week-steve-webb/

Lloyds claims card problems are now fixed. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25907000#

The best places to keep your tax bill money. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/26/the-best-places-to-keep-your-tax-bill-money/

Fracking under homes without owners' permission could be allowed. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/fracking/10598473/Fracking-could-be-
allowed-under-homes-without-owners-permission.html

£100,000 home business selling bits 'n bobs on eBay. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2546386/I-swapped-drudgery-earn-100-000-selling-bits-bobs-eBay.html

School leavers don't know how to dress and lack literacy and numeracy skills, say bosses. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/news/article-2545907/School-leavers-dont-know-dress-say-bosses.html And that's just our yoof's parents and teachers.

France launches fast track visa application for foreign visitors. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/news/article-2545934/British-hotels-left-furious-France-launches-fast-track-visas-race-lure-rich-Chinese-travellers.html Chapeau to the French, then. And instead of blaming them, let this country get rid of it's Queen of Incompetence, Theresa May and her band of goons and do the same.

O2 raises charges by up to 25% for existing customers. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/27/mobile-firm-hikes-charges-by-25/ Expensive business, sponsoring doped-up sports. Someone's got to foot the bill.

Making the most of your marketing budget. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/marketing/23250/making-marketing-budget/

6 secrets to maximising ecommerce checkout success. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/advice/23231/six-secrets-maximising-ecommerce-checkout-success/

26.01.2014: UK confirmed as Western Europe's fastest-growing economy. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/10597418/UK-confirmed-as-fastest-growing-economy-in-Western-Europe.html

Government abused by IT suppliers. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-25884915# Par for the course. It's why bent politicians, ministers, even Prime Ministers regularly have meetings with 'captains of industry'. While to appear even-handed, Downing Street's propagandascheisewriters regularly circulate the promise of improving public procurement prospects for SMEs. And the country's equally corrupt media goes, 'Coooo'.

Best all-round credit card. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/26/the-best-all-round-credit-card-just-got-better/

France could destroy the euro. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/10596755/France-could-destroy-the-euro-says-Christopher-Pissarides.html

Why Britons can't have 40 year fixed rate mortgages. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/borrowing/mortgages/10594494/Why-Britons-cant-have-40-year-fixed-rate-mortgages.html

Beat the Big Six energy companies and make your own energy. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/exclusive-beat-the-big-six-power-companies--coalition-offers-new-10m-fund-fordiy-energy-schemes-9085464.html Sure. Another derisory gesture (£10 million) by government to address a multi-£ billion problem. Collectively switching providers is the most realistic sugggestion in this article but getting people to act together even in their own common interest, is never straightforward. Way before then, the easiest and most effective way of 'beating the energy companies' is just to switch off in the home - and designate talk of wind turbines and photovoltaic panels to the same promisory tub 'o crap as the internet.

Proof wind turbines take £ thousands off the value of your home. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2546042/Proof-wind-turbines-thousands-home-value-homes-1-2-miles-wind-farms-slashed-11-cent-study-finds.html

Illiterate school leavers are putting country'es economic recovery at risk, says FSB. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2546053/Firms-slam-illiterate-school-leavers-putting-Britains-economic-recovery-risk.html Good to see the media publishing an increasingly rare comment from a real business organisation, rather than a handful of its terminally moronic, anonymous posts or Twitter comments. Still. That's what publishing social media reaction is all about. It can be moulded to suit. Unlike representative observations from genuine people who know what they are talking about. Inconveniently for politicians.

Official release: English Business Survey cessation notice. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/english-business-survey-cessation-notice Ah. Here we go. What a surprise.

Government to ban e-cigarettes. http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/01/26/electronic-cigarette-ban_n_4667962.html?1390722625&icid=maing-grid7%7Cuk%7Cdl1%7Csec1_lnk2%26pLid%3D239136 This will put a lot of internet businesses' noses out of joint. But, the Minister for Public Fatness claimed, "We must do all we can to help children lead a healthy life."

We'll be seeing a ban on 'real' cigarettes, alcohol, cars, aeroplanes, junk food, sugary drinks, plastics, dummyphones, the internet, the telly and most currently in the news, drug-addict teachers then? Oh - and not forgetting that 'special relationship' with the world's leading, terrorist state.

25.01.2014: Official release: consumers and businesses 1 step closer to new Bill of Rights. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/consumers-and-businesses-1-step-closer-to-new-bill-of-rights

Websites push up energy bills. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/25/websites-push-up-energy-bills/ If dumb politicians and an even dumber media didn't spend all their time promoting the internet, we wouldn't have these problems - and a much jollier time could be had by all.

Don't trust online reviews. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2545336/Dont-trust-online-reviews-A-fifth-left-people-NEVER-tried-product.html Is there anybody who ever has? Well. Apart from politicians and the media.

How much storage space does your 16GB REALLY have? http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2545258/Samsung-Galaxy-S4-owners-just-HALF-storage-paid-bloatware.html Apart from politicians and the media, who ever believed that dummyphones did have such a capacity? (Index card rotundas are much more powerful; and a lot cheaper.)

Gmail outage hits millions. http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/jan/25/gmail-outage-hits-millions-india-us-uk

Rural drivers could get 5p duty cut. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/24/rural-drivers-could-get-5p-duty-cut/

HSBC imposes restrictions on large cash withdrawals. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25861717#

Cash-strapped police force wants to sell advertising on the side of its squad cars. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2545696/Cash-strapped-police-force-wants-sell-advertisements-squad-cars.html 'Adult' party planners take note! Strap-on advertising would be an organic fit.

Fracking 'too late' to help businesses. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/10595626/Fracking-too-late-to-help-businesses-facing-rising-green-energy-costs-manufacturers-tell-Prime-Minister.html

24.01.2014: Freebie Friday. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/24/freebie-friday-this-weeks-discounts-deals-and-freebies/

David Cameron's new business ambassadors. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/globalbusiness/10593476/David-Camerons-new-business-ambassadors-in-pictures.html?frame=2800728 Or, all about politics and posing.

Businessman cleared of using excessive force in defending his property against vicious thugs. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2544671/Cleared-20-minutes-Businessman-defended-property-fuel-burglars-fighting-against-fence-post.html

UK's burglary hotspots. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/24/where-are-you-most-likely-to-be-a-victim-of-burglary/ Unsurprisingly, London, already officially acknowledged as the country's #1 shithole, comes in at #1 spot in these rankings as well.

The best websites for flight deals. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/travel-advice/8250012/Travel-advice-the-best-flight-comparison-websites.html

23.01.2014: Ten worst jobs in the UK. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/22/the-ten-worst-jobs-in-the-uk/ . . . of which half are in the 'self-employed' category. Or 'home businesses', if you like.

What it means to go bankrupt in the UK. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/23/life-after-bankruptcy-what-it-means-to-go-bankrupt-in-the-uk/

Water cannon to be deployed across Britain in face of 'austerity' riots. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/10590615/Water-cannon-set-to-be-deployed-across-Britain-amid-fears-of-more-riots.html 'Economic revival' they mean, surely? Or an Anglo-Saxon Spring? Or tabloid-fanned Nazi 'rallies'? Whatever the interpretation, more bad news for 'Bongo Bongoland' Britain's shopfronts and businesses generally . . . although it should be good for another mutiple-repeat reality tv series.

Businessman on trial for assault after tackling two thieves on his property. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2544030/Businessman-attacks-two-burglars-catching-red-handed-arrested-defending-property.html

Telecoms users can now switch without penalty. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25847014#

Buy-to-let investors risk losing flood insurance. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/investing/buy-to-let/10589202/Buy-to-let-investors-and-flat-owners-abandoned-by-flood-insurance-plan.html Now there's an interesting scenario.

Facebook could lose 80% of users by 2017. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/facebook/10589169/Facebook-could-lose-80pc-of-users-by-2017.html

eBay sets rules on bitcoin sales in UK. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/10588955/eBay-sets-rules-on-bitcoin-sales-in-the-UK.html

Food and craft cafe staffed by grandmothers. http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/jan/22/nana-cafe-embraces-talents-grandmothers

Is your fridge being hijacked by internet scammers? http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/23/is-your-fridge-being-hijacked-by-internet-scammers/

Britain's boomerang generation forced to stay at home. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/the-boomerang-generation-forced-back-to-the-nest-by-lack-of-jobs-and-high-cost-of-living-9075762.html Yet another sign of the country's 'economic revival'.

Essex Digital Awards; free entry now open. http://essexdigitalawards.co.uk/enter/?utm_source=Maxmail&utm_medium=Maxmail&utm_campaign=EDA2014%20Launch%20-%20Businesses#.UuDZf9FFBdg

22.01.2014: UK bosses 'most confident in the world'. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25830586#

UK tax system 'not fit for purpose'. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/tax/10588384/Britains-tax-system-not-fit-for-purpose.html

Pension contributions to become 'compulsory'. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/22/call-to-make-pensions-compulsory/ However sensible this proposal might seem, it is really preparing the ground for probably the greatest official public theft in modern history. With very little silver left in the taxpayers' draw which successive governments haven't sold off already, further raids on money that isn't theirs is on the wish list of every aspiring government of tomorrow - and pensions savings are already a major target. Whether that theft takes the form of increasing pensionable age, or letting loose the financial sector's muggers, the outcome will be the same. Already today, the UK has Europe's second worst pension regime, only just better than Portugal. Is there anyone out there who really believes that in thirty or fourty years time, matters will have improved? No matter how many illegal British immigrants and terrorists in the meantime, invade and steal from countries which can't defend themselves?

The best energy companies you've never heard of. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/household-bills/10583986/The-best-energy-companies-youve-never-heard-of.html

High energy bills are the fault of houses and families wasting energy. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2543725/Npower-boss-tells-families-power-expensive-British-houses-waste-energy.html

How to manage working from home. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/advice/23132/manage-working-home/

Report urges conversion of empty garages into start-up workspaces. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/23148/empty-garages-converted-affordable-workspaces-startups/

Homelessness charity appeals for business mentors. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/news/23205/homelessness-charity-appeals-business-mentors/

How overspending can hurt your credit rating. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/21/how-overspending-can-hurt-your-credit-rating/

Dorset B&B voted world's best. http://www.independent.co.uk/incoming/dorset-bb-is-voted-worlds-best--with-help-from-thomas-hardy-9075622.html

How to eat well on the cheap. http://www.express.co.uk/life-style/health/455088/Tips-for-healthy-eating-on-a-budget

Exeter Office Space. A free service that helps companies find suitable business accommodation in Exeter and surrounding areas when they grow too big to be contained in a home office. http://www.primefind.net/exeter_rate.asc_1_10_0_10/ -

Could you spot the scammers in the street? http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/22/could-you-spot-the-scammers-on-the-street/ Never mind out on the streets! It's the ones in offices you really need to watch out for.

21.01.2014: Self employed may lose out on state pension. http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/smallbusiness/article-2539915/
Thousands-self-employed-expected-miss-state-pension.html
Increasing numbers of self-employed people in the UK may not qualify for a full state pension when they retire, the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) has warned. ACCA has stated that self-employed people who reached state pension age on or after 6th April 2010 will need to have 30 years of National Insurance Contributions (NICs) to be eligible for the full basic state pension. Proposed changes to the state pension could increase this to 35 years for those reaching state pension age from April 2016. Other groups that may not qualify for the full state pension include self-employed people who do not have to pay Class 2 NICs, because they have been issued a CA6812 Small Earnings Exception certificate or are living abroad. Chas Roy-Chowdhury, ACCA Head of Taxation, advised anyone falling into these categories to contact HMRC to request a NICs statement. (EnterpriseQuest)

Britain 'leading the way' in online trade. http://www.express.co.uk/finance/city/454897/Britain-is-leading-the-way-in-online-trade Good news, eh? Let's hope it starts to make an impact on the economy soon and that the UK's GDP finally starts to move closer to the rest of the EU. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(nominal)

Grant scheme still available for childcare start ups. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/grants-of-up-to-500-still-available-for-childcare-businesses Childcare start ups in England are being encouraged to apply for grants of up to £500 to cover the cost of training, equipment, insurance, criminal record checks and adaptations to premises. Women and Equalities Minister Maria Miller said the £2 million grant scheme, which was launched in April 2013, will support a total of 6,000 childcare services to start up before it closes in March 2014. The scheme also involves a free mentoring service, which provides tailored support and advice for firms in the childcare sector. (EnterpriseQuest)

'Incoherent' Government schemes denying loans to small firms. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2543013/How-computer-says-no-culture-banks-incoherent-government-schemes-denying-loans-small-firms.html

Home loans in 2013 'half' their 2007 peak. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25825165#

Debt advice demand soars. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/21/debt-advice-demand-soars-over-cuts/

MPs to quiz power bosses over Christmas power cuts. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25820927# What difference is that going to make? It would be better to quiz the MPs who sold off the country's taxpayer-owned utilities to corporate cockroaches in the first place and then bang them up for a very long time. Just to make us'n plebs feel a little better. Followed by a programme of re-nationalisation.

Which business structure is right for you? http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/advice/23158/start-advice-business-structure/

World's worst scams on film. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/northamerica/usa/newyork/10583872/Scam-City-pickpockets-at-work-in-a-Brooklyn-bar.html 'World's worst scams'? I don't think so. Mere fish 'n chippers compared to what passes for official and legal wallet-lifting.

Yet another Facebook scam. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/21/look-what-this-girl-is-wearing-at-the-beach-in-front-of-thousan/

London v Paris: which is better? http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/picturegalleries/10583840/London-vs-Paris-which-is-better.html Hunker down for more cross-Channel crap.

Germany's AA admits manipulating favourite car survey. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2542797/Germanys.html Like any British media 'news' story, then? Or official statistic. Or survey. Or opinion poll. Or forum feedback.

Anyway. We already know that second-hand, log book loan, assembled by Turkish immigrants BMWs (British Mon's Wheels) are Europe's favourite car.

How to become a TV and film extra. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/21/how-to-become-a-tv-and-film-extra/

20.01.2014: Jobs prospects fall in four UK regions. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25807428# All businesses in those areas to take note.

Amazon to ship goods before they are ordered. http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/01/20/amazon-preemptive-deliver_n_4630438.html A stunning initiative to promote economic 'growth'. Force consumers to pay for goods they haven't ordered. And if they don't pay, armed delivery drones will be used for debt collection instead. Welcome to the Brave New World of Dummyphone Man.

Gangs 'hotwiring' power supplies to help cut bills. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-25718447# Makes an interesting change from energy companies 'hotwiring' customers' bank accounts, especially those paying by regular standing order.

Shoplifting at £511 million high. http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/454886/Shoplifting-at-511m-high-as-90-of-thefts-are-never-reported

New 'worst' password 2013. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/20/the-worst-passwords-of-2013-new-number-one/

Brokers posing as lenders. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25783605# I see the British financial sector continues to do as it pleases, while the Government benignly looks on.

A third of British adults have 'no-one to turn to'. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-25777617 Wot, despite social media? The self-employed, home businesses and small businesses generally, have more contact with the average man in the street than any social worker, church volunteer and especially these days, the police. Consequently, that assumes a level of social responsibility which should not be avoided and like sponsorship or charitable work, is actually good news. It does mean regularly getting away from 'screens' and wandering zombie-like along the street, peering at a dummyphone, though.

Dave 'The Dad' Cameron bans mobiles and tv. http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/454868/Strict-dad-David-Cameron-bans-TV-and-mobiles The man clearly doesn't want his children to turn into 'fuc**n' plebs'. They might even end up with enough about them to be come successful members of the business community eventually.

Work hard, live longer and prosper - it's the Asian way. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/comment/anthony-hilton-work-hard-live-longer-and-prosper--its-the-asian-way-9068645.html Well, it's also the Jewish (old school) way; the East European way; the American way. In fact any way, but modern British, it seems.

Top Ten Tips for Exporters. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/advice/23013/top-10-tips-exporters/

19.01.2014: 43 areas in England and Wales where average home costs £1 million. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/propertynews/10581814/The-43-areas-where-homes-cost-1-million.html

More than half of actors under the poverty line. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/theatre/theatre-news/10574735/More-than-half-of-actors-are-under-poverty-line.html That could be said of the self-employed generally.

EU to blame for floods. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2541773/Drowned-EU-millions-Thought-extreme-weather-blame-floods-Wrong-The-real-culprit-European-subsidies-pay-UK-farmers-destroy-trees-soak-storm.html Even by UK tabloid sub-standards, this is a belter.

Or, is it the fault of gay marriage? http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/454646/Gay-marriage-is-the-reason-why-UK-was-hit-by-floods-says-Ukip-councillor (Various tabloids.)

Cash4Phones goes bust and how to claim compensation. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/19/cash4phones-goes-bust-leaving-hundreds-out-of-pocket/

Tax breaks for SMEs in 2014. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/finance/23045/tax-breaks-smes-2014/

18.01.2014: Official release: Guidance. Cyber Streetwise. Open for business. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cyber-streetwise-open-for-business

Impossible to compare accounts. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/impossible-to-compare-accounts/

London worst for late tax returns. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/london-worst-for-late-tax-returns/ This article also touches usefully on which groups of people should be sending in self-assessment returns.

Portas knicker company goes down. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/18/portas-knickers-company-goes-under/ Almost as ironic as using retired bankers for business mentoring. Still. Should be worth a few cheap jokes.

If you want to get marketing fit, do NOT make it your New Year's resolution. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/23119/want-get-marketing-fit-make-new-years-resolution/

Sonia Brown MBE freebies: 7 Deadly Mistakes to Avoid in Business and sign up for great tips, insights and some really good information at http://www.soniabrown.co.uk

Homes that generate their own energy for sale. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/greenproperty/10561763/Homes-that-generate-their-own-energy-for-sale.html

Top tips for using a wood burning stove. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/propertyadvice/10574430/Top-tips-for-using-a-wood-burning-stove-this-winter.html

Bedroom tax loophole which could help 40,000 benefit claimants. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/peter-barker-the-man-whose-bedroom-tax-loophole-could-help-up-to-40000-housing-benefit-claimants-to-get-their-money-back-9068077.html

Roast dinner voted Britain's favourite comfort food. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2541507/Roast-dinner-voted-Britains-best-loved-comfort-food-ahead-chips-shepherds-pie-spaghetti-bolognese.html Good to see the British public hasn't entirely sold out to the French, the Germans, the Americans, the Chinese, etc, etc. Supper clubs especially, to take note.

17.01.2014: Freebie Friday. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/freebie-friday-this-weeks-discounts-deals-and-freebies/

UK retail sales see strong growth in December. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25774455# Anything but in keeping with the media's post-Christmas reportage, then? On the other hand, that's something you have get to used to in England and accord the same relevance as graffiti on a public bog wall.

Rental costs fell by 1% in December. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25759847#

How to get out of debt this year. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/how-to-get-out-of-debt-this-year/

Deadline to swap old £50 banknote. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25758063#

New fund to help Welsh construction firms grow. http://wales.gov.uk/newsroom/businessandeconomy/2014/8350160/?lang=en A new £250,000 fund to support small and medium-sized construction firms in Wales has been launched by the Welsh Government. The Construction Sector Development Fund will finance a wide range of projects to help smaller firms win new business and grow, for example, by increasing capacity, gaining specialist accreditation, or purchasing equipment. Grants of up to £50,000 or 50% of the eligible costs of the project will be available, and applicants must be able to demonstrate that projects can be completed by 31st March 2014. Businesses are being asked to submit an expression of interest, which will be used to assess their eligibility, before a full application is completed. (EnterpriseQuest)

60% of SMEs are shunning banks as 'alternative funding' goes mainstream. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/finance/23073/60-smes-shunning-banks-alternative-funding-goes-mainstream/ Any news of when this Government is going to become as vocal in their support of alternative funding as they are of the internet which only accounts for less than 10% of the country's business? We all know that High Street banks 'own' our politicians but even so, you'd think that Downing Street's propagandascheisewriters could have made at least a token effort by now.

MPs criticise Government over help for exporters. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25761014#

Belly dancing class hit with £50,000 tax bill after being ruled as non-educational. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/belly-dancer-tax-hit-after-cases-ruled-not-educational/ O, deer! Duz this spel Daynjer four Brittun's educashun sistum?

Vodafone working hard to resolve intermittent outages. http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/vodafone-working-hard-to-resolve-intermittent-outages-of-its-mobile-phone-services-9065562.html

British Apple users can sue Google over 'secret' tracking. http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/google-to-be-tried-in-the-uk-high-court-upholds-british-claimants-secret-tracking-case-9064826.html Since when has Google 'tracking' ever been a secret? Other than amongst politicians and the British media supposedly, who both make a lot of money from Google.

10 scams to watch out for in 2014. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/10575850/10-scams-to-watch-out-for-in-2014.html

Dublin tipped as Europe's #1 top investment property hotspot. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/dublin-tipped-as-property-hotspot/

Chinese millionaire still works as a street sweeper. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/17/chinese-millionaire-still-works-as-street-sweeper/ An exercise in humility which wouldn't go amiss for Little Engerlandt's business micro-celebrities.

What the French really think of the Brits. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destinations/europe/france/10576536/What-do-the-French-really-think-of-us.html I have lived and travelled all over Europe for many, many years and if there is one thing that strikes me about the French, it's that they almost never express their views or prejudices about the English. Socially, they are too polite, too refined. Unlike the English, who moan incessantly about everyone except themselves. And worse still, they take their own views (or misinformed bigotry) seriously.

I'm reminded of an old Cold War saying. A Russian will pick up a newspaper and know he will be looking at a good dose of propaganda. An Englishman will believe he is about to read the news. And that was before fifty years of dumbing down, the tabloids, the internet and the social media 'thought police' came along.

16.01.2014: INVITATION: INFORMATION SEMINAR ON LATE PAYMENT AND THE NEW EU DIRECTIVE LONDON FEBRUARY 13TH 2014. When: Thursday 13 February 2014, 09:00 – 13:30 Where: European Commission Representation Office, 32 Smith Square, London, SW1P 3EU http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/single-market-goods/fighting-late-payments/late-payment-campaign/events/united-kingdom/index_en.htm For further information, please contact Sarah Kilduff by email at late-payment-uk@ascent-communications.eu or by telephone at 01 669 0110.

Fracking fears as landowners lay claim to historical land rights. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/10575318/Land-Registry-receives-73000-land-rights-claims-minister-reveals.html Probably the same landowners who object so violently (and understandably so) to ramblers and offroaders claiming historical rights of way to exercise their leanings to being pig-ignorant nuisances. Potentially serious news for affected homeowners and home businesses, though.

300,000 make current account switch. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/16/300-000-make-current-account-switch/

How to buy bitcoins in the UK. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/10559175/How-to-get-your-virtual-hands-on-some-bitcoins.html

Most complained-about energy firm. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/16/most-complained-about-energy-firm-revealed/

The most common (and some of the strangest) legal problems for small businesses. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/legal/22971/common-strangest-legal-problems-small-businesses/

15.01.2014: More UK foods secure protected status. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/15/uk-foods-secure-protected-status/ Now all we need is for our 'patriotic' politicians, media and celebrity chefs to take note.

How to claim compensation for Christmas power cuts. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/14/how-to-claim-compensation-for-christmas-power-cuts/

Payday loans funding rent and mortgages. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25733830#

What actually damages your credit rating. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/15/credit-myths-what-actually-damages-your-credit-rating/

Business tips from UK's oldest family firms. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-25711108

Teenager becomes Britain's youngest pub landlord. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2539337/Teenager-Britains-youngest-landlord-given-pub-birthday.html

'How can I insulate my house if I don't have cavity walls?' http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/household-bills/10560396/How-can-I-insulate-my-house-if-I-dont-have-cavity-walls.html

The best credit cards to use on your travels. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/14/the-best-credit-cards-to-use-on-your-travels/

Immigration officers rewarded with shopping vouchers for winning asylum appeals. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/shopping-vouchers-cash-incentives-and-extra-holidays-immigration-officers-reportedly-rewarded-for-winning-tribual-cases-against-asylum-seekers-9060070.html Added to their filming roles, it is little wonder today's unprofessional goons have any time left for controlling the country's borders. Still. Entirely in keeping with the present Government's mentality.

Tiny cafe the taxman said owed £500,000. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/news/article-2539420/We-persecuted-fear-lose-The-tiny-cafe-taxman-said-owed-500-000.html Another gormless performance from another department of government goons. I'm surprised they didn't send in a drone.

EU workers 'avoiding tax'? http://ec.europa.eu/unitedkingdom/blog/index_en.htm Input from the UK's offshore-registered, tax-dodging media which qualifies them to write crap.

Homes with business opportunities. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/internationalproperty/10409270/Were-looking-for...-homes-that-offer-winter-warmth.html To be taken with a large pinch of incredulity.

BAPC Printing Industry Conference, Friday 17th January - Saturday 18th January 2014, Holiday Inn, Elstree, Herfordshire WD6 5PU.
http://www.bapcconference.co.uk/

The 12th China International Wine and Spirits Exhibition, May 22-24th, 2014. Tel: 86.20.8428.3513 Fax: 86.20.8428.0686 http://www.interwine.org (http://www.interwine.org/English/) Rm.206/2 F, Yinye International Building,No.865,GZ,AV.S.,China 510305

14.01.2013: Government urges people to be more cyber 'streetwise'. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/internet-security/10564244/Government-urges-people-to-be-more-cyber-streetwise.html . . . and particular attention should be paid to online scammers (politicians) posing as 'gurus'. The Government didn't add.

Slash red tape for companies which don't trade with the EU, say business chiefs. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2538955/Slash-red-tape-firms-dont-trade-EU-say-business-chiefs.html . . . and there's no reason why the Government - any British government - couldn't do that immediately it so chooses. But therein lies the truth of the matter. British governments do not choose to do so. We are talking 'regulation' here. Not law. Next.

How to repair your broken goods. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/shortcuts/2014/jan/09/how-to-repair-your-broken-goods-from-an-iphone-to-a-washing-machine

Pensioner admits to 56-year scam mail addiction. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/13/pensioner-admits-to-56-year-scam-mail-addiction-costing-200-000/

The visa scam. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/13/dont-fall-for-the-visa-scam/

Yodel voted UK's worst delivery operator. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/13/yodel-voted-uks-worst-delivery-operator/

The 'catch' which prevents customers from receiving their bank account perks. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/
banking/10567914/5pc-interest-The-free-bank-perks-you-cant-claim.html
Is this so-called 'catch' terribly surprising? It's like accusing a train operator of abandoning customers on the platform - who have turned up late and their train has just left the station.

Trending: UK diners' demand for snails. http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/news/snails-farmers-just-cant-keep-up-with-demand-from-british-diners-9057148.html A nice little 'home' business even though it's a disgusting habit.

A 'blossoming' business. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2538916/Its-jewelry-green-thumbs-Designers-business-blossoms-thanks-rings-necklaces-contain-living-plants.html

Self-publishing a book. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/14/self-publishing-a-book-could-you-be-the-next-el-james/

How British meat tastes have changed since the 'Neddy' scandal. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25715666

Number of text messages being sent falls for the first time. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2538488/SMS-takes-seat-IM-number-texts-sent-Britain-falls-time.html

10 ways to kick-start your marketing for 2014. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/23004/10-ways-kick-start-marketing-2014/

Larf of the Century. Brothers print fake banknotes. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/13/brothers-printed-fake-banknotes/ "Production of counterfeit notes undermines the whole economy of the country... essentially it undermines the whole integrity of the currency system;" said the judge, "and that is the job of The Bank of England."

13.01.2014: Beware fake or copycat HMRC websites. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/13/beware-fake-hmrc-websites-taxpayers-warned/

Britons more optimistic on economy, survey suggests. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25699187#

Figures cast doubt on growth rate. http://www.express.co.uk/finance/city/453289/Figures-cast-doubts-over-growth-rate No surprises, in other words. Well. For anyone who doesn't believe what they read or hear in the media.

The North sees fastest growth in the UK. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/10567152/The-North-sees-fastest-growth-in-any-region.html

Eurosceptic business group urge EU re-think. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/10567190/Eurosceptic-business-group-to-lobby-Government-for-EU-rethink.html This group is hardly representative of wider British business interests but will undoubtedly be heard because it is such a typical reflection of the present Government's self-interests.

Forget banks and join credit unions, 'unfit for purpose' Minister urges. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/savings/10564255/Forget-banks-and-join-credit-unions-middle-classes-urged.html We couldn't agree more. A pity politicians actively impeded the development of credit unions in this country until after the banking catastrophe which they helped create. On the other hand, turning to credit unions for better interest rates on savings, isn't what they're about. Unlike snout-in-trough politicians.

(Plus no credit union is likely to pay interest rates which equal those of certain current accounts; Santander for example; Nationwide; Lloyds and TSB; Yorkshire Bank; Etc. http://www.money.co.uk/current-accounts/high-interest-current-accounts.htm)

BUT. Support your local credit union as well.

Homeserve facing £34 million penalty. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25711053#

Sisters aged seven and four become Britain's youngest entrepreneurs. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2538126/Sisters-seven-four-Britains-youngest-entrepreneurs-selling-sweets-pocket-money-prices.html

More Dragons' Den 'reject' success stories. http://money.aol.co.uk/2013/12/20/is-this-the-most-successful-dragons-den-reject-ever/?ncid=webmail9

12.01.2014: Supermarket spies on the trail of bogus British food. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2537765/The-supermarket-spies-trail-bogus-British-food-Undercover-shoppers-check-authenticity-British-branded-products.html Does that mean we can't trust labelling any more? Wow.

UK's best and worst retailers, Christmas 2013 index. http://www.internationalsupermarketnews.com/news/14983

Home businesses with a stake in Transylvania. http://www.express.co.uk/news/property/453416/A-stake-in-Transylvania The Central and Eastern European property market is almost totally overlooked by the British media yet a significant number of Brits have already bought into these regions. Well worth taking a closer look.

'Baby Butcher' Blair's mass-murdering fags finally face war crimes charges. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/exclusive-devastating-dossier-on-abuse-by-uk-forces-in-iraq-goes-to-international-criminal-court-9053735.html A story which isn't exactly doing the rounds of the country's Nazi, hate-preaching tabloids yet (or allowing comment) and is long overdue. Until this filth in its entirety, is locked up, tried and preferably, executed, then Britain has no convincing future as an international trading partner in any new economic or commercial order - and no number of repeats of Second World War films or historical propaganda by the country's criminal media accomplices, is going to change that one little bit. It's time for the UK to face up to and deal with its past in order to have any chance at all of starting a new future. Which also means persuading the International Criminal Court, more accustomed to mounting trials to serve Atlantacist interests, will need to change direction, too. Or be replaced with a more convincing court altogether.

5 sales tips for 2014. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/22909/5-sales-tips-2014/

From Event Organisers Update: MORE ON WORKING FROM HOME. Another three responses to our working from home survey were as follows.

o Commutes by train at annual cost of £3,000, says employer needs to be city or town based, that 50% of work could be done from home but unsure if they would do it if offered.
o Commutes by bus at annual cost of £816, says employer doesn’t need to be city or town based, that 90% of work could be done from home but unsure if they would do it if offered.
o Commutes by car at annual cost of £3,000, says employer does not need to be city or town based, t hat 50% of work could be dome from home but would not do it if offered.

According to government figures 678,000 people worked mainly from home in 2001, this figure rising to more than 1,000,000 in 2012. (I see the official view of the numbers of people working from home doesn't quite concur with the 'millions' bandied about in the UK's media and by telecoms and home insurance companies. Wow. Another surprise. Not. Ed.)

More confidential contributions from readers welcomed.

Click here to take our survey. http://sg7.biz/mailer/surveys.php?id=6

CHECK OUT DESTINATIONS
A one-day appointments-based destination workshop for pre-registered organisers is being held on Thursday January 30th at the Radisson Blu Portman Hotel, London, located in Portman Square, just off Oxford Street

Suppliers manning tables there include a large contingent of thirteen cities, hotels and destination management companies from Germany as well as suppliers from Australia, France, Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Korea, Switzerland, Malta, Greece, Cyprus, UAE, Morocco, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Italy, Canary Islands, Netherlands, Antarctica and UK, more than forty in all.

The day runs from 9.00am to 5.30pm, with organisers given a choice of 24 appointment times, and includes a one-hour networking lunch for all at 1.00pm.

More information and registration at http://www.moulden-marketing.co.uk

EXCURSIONS 2014
Featuring more than 250 UK and European attractions offering options to group travel and other organisers this exhibition takes place on Saturday January 25th at Alexandra Palace, 10.30am to 4.00pm, entry free.

Free coach travel from 50 UK pick up points is also offered to pre-registered visitors, subject to availability, and there are a number of show-only offers.

http://www.excursions.org.uk or tel. 023 8062 5516

11.01.2014: Official release: £8 million technology boost to help re-invigorate British High Streets. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/8-million-technology-boost-for-uk-high-streets Just £8 million? Not serious, then. How about a simple business rates cut, instead?

Post office to offer current accounts in 110 branches. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/banking/10563805/Post-Office-to-offer-current-accounts-in-110-branches.html

10 places to spend Bitcoin in the UK. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/10558191/Ten-places-where-you-can-spend-your-bitcoins-in-the-UK.html

Scientists find secret to writing a best-selling novel. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/10560533/Scientists-find-secret-to-writing-a-best-selling-novel.html All they have to do now is find enough people who can read.

Latin America catches entrepreneurship fever. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25650181

The only booming businesses are booze and payday lenders . . . http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/commentators/tom-hodgkinson-the-only-booming-businesses-are-booze-and-payday-lenders-no-one-buys-books-the-high-streets-are-collapsing-9046979.html

Why landlords are shunning benefits tenants. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/investing/buy-to-let/10563064/Why-buy-to-let-landlords-are-shunning-profitable-benefit-tenants.html

Getting your money back. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/columns/opinion/22891/getting-money-back/

10.01.2014: Freebie Friday. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/10/freebie-friday-this-weeks-discounts-deals-and-freebies/

Free loans offered for flooded businesses. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25667799#

Compensation package agreed for credit card insurance mis-selling. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/banking/
10561301/Victims-of-CPP-insurance-mis-selling-approve-compensation.html

'Record' online purchases over Christmas period. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25671561#

UK trade deficit hampering 'economic recovery'. http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/jan/09/stubborn-uk-trade-deficit-exports-imports-recovery The 'experts', the politicians and the tabloids got it wrong again, have they?

Royal Mail privatisation 'botched'. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25671685# Is there any privatisation by any British government which hasn't been botched? If you take the somewhat naive view that privatisation is anything more than offloading a publicly owned and mismanaged liability in exchange for an extra few bob in the government's coffers and a future 'favour' or two from Big Corp.

Forget BRIC and CIVET. MINT is the economic powerhouse of tomorrow. http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/jan/09/mint-condition-countries-tipped-economic-powerhouses Never fear. We got drones! AND we're best mates with the fattest, ugliest, nastiest, thickest bully in the playground.

Tour de France organisers reward Yorkshire with 3 day stage race. http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2014/jan/09/yorkshire-cycling-race-legacy-british-tour-de-france-success So all that anti-professional cycling propaganda by media ambassadors for doping and cheating in the country's national sports has backfired, has it? Very good news for Yorkshire businesses on the other hand.

Self-publishing set to soar. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/09/self-publishing-expected-to-soar/ 'Selfies' by dummyphone users who can do spellin', then?

15 ways to make technology pay. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/10559626/Martin-Lewis-15-ways-to-make-technology-pay.html

09.01.2013: Online retailers planning to expand into physical stores. http://www.royalmailgroup.com/uk-sme-e-retailers-planning-combine-clicks-bricks-boost-2014-sales One in six small and medium-sized online retailers plan to expand into physical stores in 2014, according to a survey by Royal Mail. Of the 400 online retailers surveyed, 15% also said they planned to trade via online marketplaces such as eBay and Amazon. Over half of respondents said competition for online orders is more intense than last year, with nearly 60% saying this is due to increasing numbers of online retailers. Nick Landon, Managing Director of Royal Mail Parcels, said smaller firms are "concentrating on exploiting as many channels to market as possible, adding space in physical premises and online marketplace listings to complement their existing web channel." (EnterpriseQuest)

Minister abuses government department's taxpayer-funded Facebook page to plug wife's business. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/08/ministers-wifes-website-plugged-on-dwp-facebook-page/

Eco-living village uses stream for energy. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/greenproperty/10553304/Eco-living-Llangattock-the-village-using-a-stream-for-energy.html

Ethiopia aims to create a new generation of entrepreneurs. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25336447

08.01.2014: Stop buying new and repair instead, says Government adviser. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/10557236/Stop-buying-new-appliances-and-cars-and-repair-them-instead-Government-adviser-says.html Corrr. Just think. Millions of grandparents and parents around the world who could have been 'government advisers'. Bad news for 'growth', though.

Shop prices fall at quickest pace for seven years. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/10556867/Shop-prices-fall-at-quickest-pace-for-seven-years-after-Christmas-discounting.html Because everyone is repairing their old kit instead.

Why don't YOU buy British, Minister? http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2535563/Why-dont-YOU-buy-British-minister-Farmers-accuse-Government-hypocrisy-plea-shoppers-buy-foreign-food.html

Re-discover the delights of seasonal British food. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2535554/Ditch-oh-bland-imports-rediscover-delight-seasonal-British-food.html

Trending. Vinyl sales at their highest for 15 years. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/music-news/10556186/Vinyl-sales-highest-for-15-years.html

Middle-class homeowners thieving wood to fuel log-burners. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2535405/Stop-thieving-timber-nature-reserves-Middle-class-homeowners-blamed-pinching-wood-fuel-trendy-log-burners.html Yet another opportunity for Conservative hoodies. Might take the pressure off granny-mugging, though.

The best low-energy lightbulbs. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/propertyadvice/10553244/Jeff-Howell-what-are-the-best-low-energy-lightbulbs.html

MOD funding research of web habits. http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/jan/07/ministry-defence-fund-research-online

UK porn trends. http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2014/jan/07/pornhub-porn-trends-search-terms-time

07.01.2014: Buy British fruit and veg to help economy, says Minister. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-25633611# They're quick off the mark these politicians, aren't they? And in the same breath he might have added that it will help jobs for immigrants, both legal and illegal because when it comes to working the fields and the packhouses, there's barely a working Brit to be seen. Still, it all helps maintain the status quo, as they say. It's been like that for generations.

And of course, we'll be seeing our 'Buy British' politicians and their media gobshites taking the lead, won't we? On a DAILY, permanent basis.

UK car sales highest since 2007. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25632668# That will be all those millions of 'back-door' Moldavian grannies buying British cars because unlike the Brits themselves, they don't know a good car like a BMW (British Mon's Wheels) when they see one.

Recovery to pick up pace, say British Chambers of Commerce. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/07/recovery-to-pick-up-pace-bcc/ Let's hope they've got it right this time.

Administrations down by 11% in 2013. https://www.deloitte.com/view/en_GB/uk/news/a996605e2c743410VgnVCM2000003356f70aRCRD The number of firms that went into administration in 2013 fell by 11% to 1,629 compared with 1,833 in 2012, according to Deloitte. In the retail sector, the number of firms going into administration fell by 6% to 183 in 2013, compared with 194 in 2012. Other sectors that experienced fewer administrations in 2013 included the hospitality and leisure sector, which fell by 17.5% to 141, and property and construction, which fell by 24% to 322. The healthcare and social services sector was the only sector that experienced an increase in company administrations in 2013, with an increase of 7% to 45. (EnterpriseQuest)

Any news like this is good news but it's individual bankruptcies, insolvencies and voluntary arrangements which are of more relevance to the small business community than the picking list from an international firm of accountants - as latest figures from the accountancy sector itself, show that the number of insolvencies has almost doubled. (Below)

Minister suggests over-50s should take apprenticeships to become lawyers, accountants and bankers. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/
article-2534451/Youre-hired-Minister-tells-50s-seeking-career-change-apprentices.html
More of the same cabal that's brought the western world to its knees, in other words. Or, about as realistic as the recently announced 'honesty' training courses for politicians.

Insolvencies in accountancy sector almost double. http://www.accountancyage.com/aa/news/2320436/firms-entering-insolvency-rockets-41-in-a-year The number of accountancy firms going out of business increased by 41% in 2013 compared with 2012, according to research by Syscap. The research, which analysed figures provided by Companies House, revealed that 103 accountancy firms became insolvent in 2013 compared with 73 in the previous year. As well as firms being reluctant to propose tax planning strategies to their clients, the increase in insolvencies has also been attributed to decreasing numbers of mergers and acquisitions, and the relaxation of auditing requirements. Commenting, Syscap Chief Executive Officer Philip White said: "It's understandable that companies and individuals want to find ways to cut costs by skimping on professional fees, but in the end it can be a false economy." (EnterpriseQuest)

You were saying, Minister? (No cigar.) And yet another sign of an English 'economic revival'.

London officially world's most expensive city. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/07/the-most-expensive-city-in-the-world-and-its-in-the-uk/ In addition to officially being the UK's #1 shithole. ( http://money.aol.co.uk/2013/10/08/the-ten-worst-places-to-live-in-the-uk/?ncid=webmail2 )

Train fares eat up the savings of moving out of London. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25593532# Yes, that's the plan. Well spotted, that hack.

French president to make drastic U-turn on taxes and public spending in bid to save presidency. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/
europe/francois-hollande-makes-drastic-uturn-on-tax-cuts-and-welfare-in-bid-to-save-presidency-9042432.html
Ahh. So he's reacting to the voices of the working people at last, is he? Unfortunately, it's a major shift in thinking which the country needs as well, as The 1789 Socialists' Bible enshrines The First Commandment of 'Envy Thy Neighbours' (and if they work harder and have got more talent than you, denounce them and have them sent to the guillotine.)

Hunt on for UK's next top supplier. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/07/hunt-on-for-uks-next-top-supplier/

Cooking at home is on the rise. http://blogs.independent.co.uk/2014/01/06/dish-of-the-day-cooking-at-home-is-on-the-rise/ What else are '8 million' home businesses going to do it they don't have any paying customers left?

Should I buy a weapon to defend my property? http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/10546717/Should-I-buy-a-weapon-to-defend-my-property.html Only if you are going to use it.

06.01.2014: Retail administrations down 6% last year. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/news/22782/retail-administrations-6-last-year/ That will be the High Street 'dying' as a result of online shopping, then?

BT's 'immoral' new fee for 1571 service. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2534380/BT-fire-new-free-1571-messages-Firm-accused-immoral-rises-customers-charged-service-time.html

Yahoo hit by malware attack. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2534153/Millions-visitors-Yahoo-com-hit-huge-malware-attack.html

A vision of 2050: jetpacks, shorter working weeks and smartphones for all. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2512019/Smartphones-life-commuter-jet-packs-shorter-working-weeks-Environmentalist-John-Porritts-vision-2050-Britain-sounds-GREAT.html So who's going to pay the bills?

05.01.2014: Travel insurer warns customers of IT hack. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25591548#

Palestinian startups stir into life. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/10549484/Palestines-startup-ecosystem-stirs-into-life.html

Ed Milliband to block cheap foreign labour loophole. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/exclusive-ed-miliband-will-block-cheap-foreign-staff-loophole-9039194.html Where would this be, then? In Iraq? Afghanistan? Libya? Syria? It's going to put an awful lot of illegal British immigrants on the dole queue. Then again, they're 'taxpayer-funded' already, so I suppose that's all right.

In the meantime and obviously contrary to the stories put about by Britain's hate-preaching politicians and media, a skilled operator costs the going rate for the job, irrespective of colour, race, religion or nationality. And it's been that way for established and reputable agencies and businesses for a long, long time.

On the other hand, there are obviously bogus and even fraudulent businesses around which will do their utmost to fleece dumb punters and there, certain politicians and generous political party donors, do spring to mind.

One million rented homes in 'Bongo Bongoland' Britain are sub-standard. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/back-to-rising-damp-one-million-rented-homes-in-private-sector-are-substandard-9039201.html The Government has promised to address the issue by allowing further relaxation of Green Belt and woodlands planning restrictions to allow Conservative Party donors to build thousands more sub-standard houses of the future.

04.01.2014: Woman to be sentenced for iPad scam. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/03/woman-to-be-sentenced-for-ipad-scam/

Shower together, go to bed early, give up tea and coffee and play Monopoly, advises 'Bongo Bongoland' Britain energy supplier. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/10549821/Shower-together-and-go-to-bed-early-to-cut-energy-bills-First-Utility-says.html I'm all for it, myself. The natural extension of this argument being that we could get rid of the country's present energy suppliers altogether and replace the present cockroach cartel with proper businessmen. Although with global warming accelerating faster than originally thought - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/
10546128/Worlds-climate-warming-faster-than-feared-scientists-say.html
- it looks as if nature might well provide us all with an altogether free solution. Tabloid and anonymous forum 'scientists' permitting.

Business lending slump continues. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/borrowing/mortgages/10548681/Business-lending-slump-deepens-as-mortgage-approvals-hit-fresh-high.html

Buy-to-let property supremo shuts door on housing benefit tenants. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/travelnews/10549068/Roaming-charges-cost-British-travellers-112m.html 'We've found that Eastern Europeans are good (working) tenants', said one of Britain's biggest landlords. Too true.

Millions to miss out on Britain's 'economic recovery'. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/george-osbornes-stealth-cuts-will-force-millions-to-miss-economic-recovery-9038023.html Well. 'Economic recovery' according to the Government and its propagandascheisewriters, that is. In the meantime, these people are our customers. So there will be a knock-on effect.

French 'eco-tax' mobilises business 'red caps'. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jan/03/french-eco-tax-new-generation-breton-red-caps

Councils to blitz 'beds in sheds' for illegal immigrants. http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/451919/Councils-to-blitz-squalid-beds-in-sheds-that-house-migrants I thought they were part of the Government's target of 100,000 battery homes a year for first-time buyers and home business start-ups with official business loans? However, good news for still more 'red tape' and bureaucrat creation instead of a mere question or two at the local pub, the church or East European deli. On the other hand, one does appreciate that our police and immigration services are under a great deal of pressure from modern work practices at the moment, including snouting for the criminal tabloids and preparing for their next TV series.

A wheely tiny, mortgage-free house. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/greenproperty/10549002/A-wheely-small-house-Alek-Lisefskis-8x20-eco-friendly-home-on-wheels.html

Roaming charges cost British travellers £112 million. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/travelnews/10549068/Roaming-charges-cost-British-travellers-112m.html

50 ways to save money in 2014. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/10522665/50-ways-to-save-money-in-2014.html

03.01.2013: Freebie Friday. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/03/freebie-friday-this-weeks-discounts-deals-and-freebies/

New Years' resolutions at risk of scams. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/02/new-year-s-resolutions-at-risk-of-scams/

House prices rose by over 8% in 2013. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25575964# I then used the house price postcode calculator at the end of this article to enter the postcode for the region where we are - well-heeled, low unemployment, etc - and found that house prices have gone DOWN by, err, over 3%.

Take care with all the fanfare surrounding house prices. I have seen far too many home businesses using the supposedly increasing equity in their homes to bankroll their businesses. Whereas in fact, it should be the other way around.

UK construction sector growth remains strong. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25588528# Certainly strong enough for my builders to have taken two weeks off for Christmas/The New Year. I could have sacked them and brought in some East European tradesmen - if I'd have been able to find some. Unfortunately, there aren't enough of them about to meet demand.

IMF warns of 'savings tax'. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/10548104/IMF-paper-warns-of-savings-tax-and-mass-write-offs-as-Wests-debt-hits-200-year-high.html Inevitable.

Facebook sued over alleged private message scanning. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25584286#

Worst excuses for late tax returns. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/tax/10547261/Worst-excuses-for-late-tax-returns-revealed-by-HMRC.html

10 most innovative ways to promote your business. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/22760/10-innovate-ways-promote-business/

5 common meeting mistakes. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/advice/22330/five-common-meeting-mistakes/

Writing copy that sells for SMEs. http://www.bmmagazine.co.uk/in-business/22737/content-marketing-smes-p-1-write-copy-sells/

02.01.2014: Rail fare rises of 2.8% come into effect. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25567969#

UK commuters spending more on fares than European counterparts. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/02/uk-commuters-spend-more-on-fares/ Well, 'Bongo Bongoland' Brits can always emigrate! It's certainly a better punt than 'homeworking' or setting up a 'home business' to fall prey to some of Europe's highest energy tariffs, instead.

Energy tariff reforms to simplify market. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25568823# Anything like current comparative supplier billing, where useful information is printed in such a tiny font that householders are required to invest in microscopes? This will be a good, additional line for British 'telecommunications equipment of mass destruction' suppliers to Syria however, where the weather conditions at the moment are impeding the usual exports.

Young people claim they have 'nothing to live for', says Prince's Trust. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-25559089 What an indictment of parents, politicians and the media's clockwork gobshites! And this criticism comes from an organisation which has REALLY done so much for the country's youngsters, including setting many of them up in successful businesses. As opposed to the achievements of smartphones, social media and tv 'personalities'.

As EU work restrictions are lifted on Romania and Bulgaria, the influx begins - of Brits heading for Bucharest. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/
uk/home-news/as-eu-work-restrictions-are-lifted-for-romanians-and-bulgarians-the-influx-has-begun-of-britons-heading-for-bucharest-9033119.html
As our world GDP stats - http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.MKTP.KD.ZG - yesterday showed, the Romanian and Bulgarian economies are healthier than those of Britain. In fact, there isn't a single East European economy which isn't and by quite some margin!

The only trouble is, I was teaching commercial English to Polish businesspeople twenty years ago; working with the Chinese ten years before that. And I was far from being alone. However, these genuine business opportunities are off the media's and politicians' radar. There's much more to be earned from lying and preaching hatred. It's how every extremist regime in the world supports itself and allows the elite to continue making its money from 'fuc**ng plebs'.

All quiet at the coach station as East European coach invasion comes to nothing. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/all-quiet-at-the-coach-station-as-fears-of-invasion-from-eastern-europe-come-to-nothing-9033123.html

Cash machine deserts in poorer areas. http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/jan/01/poor-people-free-cash-machines

Ten Best power tools. http://www.independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/house-garden/the-10-best-power-tools-9033181.html?action=gallery I usually assess a professional by the quality of his kit. Or not, as in this case.

01.01.2014: SMEs relying on savings and handouts. http://money.aol.co.uk/2013/12/31/smes-rely-on-savings-and-handouts/ Wot, despite all that input from Dragons' Den, The Apprentice, the Government, social media and 30,000 retired bank managers posing as business mentors?

Will wind farms knock a third off house prices? http://money.aol.co.uk/2013/12/31/will-wind-farms-knock-a-third-off-house-prices/ If it's not wind farms, it's flood risk areas; or fracking zones; or the high speed rail link; or a predicted one million householders struggling to pay their mortgages if interest rates rise. Looks like 2014 is going to be a barrel of laughs.

12 ways to save £10,000 in 2014. http://money.aol.co.uk/2014/01/01/12-ways-to-save-10-000-in-2014/

Living-room postmistress honoured. http://money.aol.co.uk/2013/12/31/living-room-postmistress-honoured/

Banks robbed with USB sticks. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/internet-security/10543850/Hackers-target-cash-machines-with-USB-sticks.html

Latvia's 5% growth the envy of Europe. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/11/latvia-eurozone-membership-economic-growth It's amazing how they've managed to do that while the entire population is in the UK working as illegal immygrunts, having free operations and living off benefits, all at the same time.

In fact, it's even more amazing how many 'Third World' countries 'flooding' the UK with 'economic migrants' have similarly healthy GDPs. Even Iraq and Afghanistan. Plus the rest of the Baltic states, including Poland, as well as Romania and even Bulgaria. http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.MKTP.KD.ZG Perhaps they're all coming over to lend a hand to 'Bongo Bongoland' Britain, which was only able manage 0.1% for the same period? And even worse for the three years before that.

Latvia joins the Eurozone. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-25567096# Good to see a vibrant economy entering the EU; it will help keep all the old, dead wood afloat. Like Britain.

New Year Edito: In looking through all the regular mailings which could prove useful to home businesses we receive every month, anything which comes from about.com is always worth a read. Business ideas and online business ideas especially, are always in great demand and are among our sites' most popular search terms. Consequently, from one of the best-known and most respected online sources of business information in the world, here is a link to 21 Online Business Ideas. http://onlinebusiness.about.com/od/onlinebusiness101/tp/21-Online-Business-Ideas.htm?nl=1

That's 21 as in only 21. Of which our 'spam 'n scam' email filters would knock out a further half dozen, ranging from SEO to social media, from gambling to trading, to anything from the USA. So, not really a significant number of genuine, viable online business opportunities at the end of the day. Not this side of the Atlantic, anyway.

After that, if you then go to the UK's most reputed source of business information, EnterpriseQuest.com then currently, they are offering over 500 quality business information factsheets of which I would imagine, half or more, are general business ideas - although not restricted to the internet by a long way. Nonetheless, the number of possibilities are on the up.

But then, take a look at something which appears to have totally escaped everyone's attention, the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) http://www.ons.gov.uk/
ons/guide-method/classifications/current-standard-classifications/standard-industrial-classification/index.html
which is an official register or index of business and employment activity and has been in existence in the UK since 1948. It is regularly updated and revised, the numerical index tops out at over 9,000 and many activities of which are 'home businesses' - although these are just 'occupations' lists and not plans or templates. (Just click on the .pdf indexes in the link.) But as we find over and over again, all it takes to get the grey matter turning are just one or two words, to lead to well-directed and specific research.

It reminds me of a prolonged study I sat down to in the early 1980s with a household-name American company which had been a leading trainer of software engineers, analysts and computer programmers. Seeing millions of these jobs around the world doomed by the spread of the pc, the official brief was to analyse and predict what the next major, post-pc era could offer in terms of employment. That criterion hasn't, nor ever will, change.

For a 2014 resolution, it would improve any potential business start-ups' prospects to find out what really is going on, to get a feel first, for what is actually out there; and for that, it's essential to look much further than a smartphone screen or a 100-word article in the media, with some hack pitching their personal vision of someone 'teleworking' behind a screen as being representative of a home business. There's much more to getting a life than that.

A Happy, Healthy and Wealthy New Year to you all.

With our usual gratitude and thanks to BAD News and Cobweb Info.

Len Tondel

 

 

Viewpoint: December 2013; November 2013; October 2013; September 2013; August 2013; July 2013; June 2013; May 2013; April 2013; March 2013; February 2013; January 2013

December 2012; November 2012; October 2012; September 2012; August 2012; July 2012; June 2012; May 2012; April 2012; March 2012; February 2012; December 2011/January 2012

November 2011; October 2011; September 2011; August 2011; July 2011; June 2011

 



eBOSS January 2014 contents:

Pick of the News:
RTI to be relaxed for micro-business; Government publishes National Minimum Wage guidance; ONS report on e-commerce published; Report predicts future of domestic leisure tourism; Big Lottery Fund announces new programme; Energy suppliers to cut 'back-billing' for small firms; Small firms unclear about cost of international money transfers

Tax and VAT News
FREE! 101 Insider Business Tax Tips

Self Assessment Payments on Account: Make Sure You Don’t Slip Up

Words of Wisdom by Colin Edwards

5 Ways to Handle a Customer Complaint

What Bootstrapped Start-ups Do Differently

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  Home Business Alliance
1604 Chynoweth House, Trevissome Park, Blackwater, Truro TR4 8UN
Tel: 0871 284 5100 Fax: 0871 284 4999 (Calls to 0871 numbers cost 10p per minute)

Contact/e-mail: info@homebusiness.org.uk
 


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