The latest stories from the Business section of the BBC News web site.
Updated: 3 hours 26 min ago
House prices rose 1.6% last month, according to the latest survey from the Halifax, with the annual rate of increase rising slightly to 8.5%.
Shares in China led regional gains on Friday as investors' hopes for further stimulus from the government were reignited by disappointing official trade data.
Oil and gas firm BG Group, which is set to be taken over by Royal Dutch Shell, reports a big drop in first-quarter earnings.
Japan's biggest car manufacturer, Toyota, has beaten expectations to post a year-on-year 19% rise in net income for the 12 months to March.