Thursday evening news briefing: The NHS pay deal that could end the strikes

·5 min read
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Evening Briefing logo

Good evening. The Government has completed negotiations with unions and agreed a pay deal for nurses, ambulance staff and other NHS workers. We have analysis of the offer and what happens next, as well as the latest news on Credit Suisse.

Government and unions agree NHS pay deal

Ministers and unions representing nurses, ambulance staff and other NHS workers have completed negotiations and reached a final offer. The Telegraph understands the terms include a five per cent pay rise for next year, and a bonus of up to six per cent for the current financial year. The proposal for around one million NHS staff, including nurses, ambulance workers and midwives, has been backed by unions, and will now go to their members for a vote. The terms are also understood to include a “Covid recovery bonus” - our health editor Laura Donnelly has more detail on the deal here.

Labour throws back-to-work drive into chaos with pledge to scrap pension reforms

Labour has vowed to reverse Jeremy Hunt's decision to abolish the lifetime pension allowance. Jack Maidment reports that any uncertainty over the future of the policy could damage the Government's hopes of boosting the workforce. Mr Hunt said the move to get rid of the allowance would "incentivise our most experienced and productive workers to stay in work for longer". But Labour said scrapping the tax-free cap will "result in the top one per cent of pension savers getting a massive tax break for their retirement", as the party promised to undo the decision if it wins power at the next election. Ben Wilkinson argues that Labour has learned nothing from its disastrous record of pensions meddling. And Christopher Hope details the Budget clues that point to a general election next autumn.

Europe's central bank 'ready to respond' amid Credit Suisse turmoil

The European Central Bank (ECB) has said it "stands ready to respond" following the market turmoil caused by Credit Suisse. Its governing council said it is "monitoring current market tensions closely" following the lifeline offered to the Swiss lender overnight after its share price plunged. Credit Suisse plans to borrow up to £44.5bn from Switzerland's central bank to shore up liquidity and investor confidence. Follow the latest news on our business live blog.

Evening briefing: Today's essential headlines

Black Sea | A US drone was downed after a 40-minute mid-air sparring session with a Russian fighter jet, freshly declassified footage shows - you can watch the video of the incident here.

Comment and analysis

World news: Macron booed after forcing through pension reform without MP vote

Emmanuel Macron will force through his unpopular pension reforms without a vote in a highly controversial move that unions have warned is tantamount to a declaration of war. Mr Macron reportedly told ministers during an Elysée crisis meeting that the "financial risks" were too great not to see the reform passed. The opposition said the move was a denial of democracy and an admission of weakness. Henry Samuel explains why the reforms have been resisted so strongly.

Interview of the day

Richard Eyre: ‘There’s no question it was worth making Matt Hancock’s WhatsApp messages public’

The Lockdown Files have added topicality to a film adaptation of Alan Bennett’s Allelujah!. Its director explains how it was informed by the pandemic

Read the interview

Sport news: Man United ready to battle for Bellingham

Manchester United are ready to join the bidding war for Jude Bellingham with the transfer fee for the England international believed to have been set at a minimum of £110m. Meanwhile, Ivan Toney has been included in the England squad, despite facing FA charges for alleged breaches of gambling rules - find out who else is in Gareth Southgate's squad here.

Editor's choice

Retail | How Waitrose lost the middle classes

Health | Nine things to do right now for a healthy life at age 100

Hunting | ‘Why is trophy hunting OK for rich Scottish landowners but not communities in Africa?’

Business news: Childcare tax trap means parents are better off with pay cut

An "absurd" tax trap caused by Jeremy Hunt's childcare reforms means that high-earning parents would be better off if they took a £34,000 pay cut. Melissa Lawford explains why this is the case here.

Tonight starts now

What does the Budget mean for me? | Use our tax calculators to find out

Three things for you

And finally... for this evening's downtime

Introduce your mum to something new this Mother’s Day – our experts have 16 stylish ideas | From luxurious scarves to a treat for the hair, Mother’s Day gifting is all about introducing our mums to something new

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