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Equilibrium's finance and investment news roundup

Our roundup this week includes new findings suggesting people over the age of 50 are spending more money on holidays, a report highlighting a lack of women among the UK's richest people and a drop in shares for heating products supplier Wolseley following its announcement of job losses in Britain, while across the pond we report on a strong first US presidential TV debate for Hillary Clinton. 


Over-50s 'spending more on holidays'

People over the age of 50 are increasing their spending on holidays, new research carried out by the Centre for Economics and Business Research on behalf of insurance group Saga has shown. It was revealed that those in this age bracket have upped spending on travel by 23% over the past five years.

In comparison, it was shown that under-50s have cut their outlay on holidays by 5% during the same period.

The over-50s now account for well over half of the UK's total spending on holidays and spent £39 billion on travel in 2015 alone. This included £2.8 billion on cruises, which remains a popular holiday type among this age group. 

Report: Few women among UK's richest

Women represent a minority among the wealthiest people in Britain, a new report published by the London School of Economics (LSE) has shown. The findings revealed that only 9% of the 53,000 richest people in Britain are women; and the pattern is repeated in other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries.

The research involved analysis of tax data from OECD countries where couples made separate tax returns, and in the UK it was shown that there has been little change since the 1990s regarding the proportion of women in the wealthiest 0.1%. However, there has been an increase in the proportion of women in the richest 10% and the richest 1%.

Professor John Hills, Co-director at the International Inequalities Institute at LSE, said: "Women have managed to increase their representation in the top 10% because of their success in the professions and business, but few of them are among the very wealthiest."    

Wolseley shares drop after UK job cut announcement

Shares in heating and plumbing products supplier Wolseley fell by more than 4% in early trading on Tuesday after the company announced it is to close 80 branches in the UK, as well as a distribution centre. The closures will lead to around 800 job losses.

There are currently around 750 Wolseley branches and about 6,000 people employed in Britain. However, the company generates around 80% of its profit in the US and the closures are aimed at delivering annual cost savings of around £25 million to £30 million, although restructuring charges should amount to around £100 million. 

Snap poll suggests Clinton victory in US presidential debate

A snap poll from CNN and ORC has pointed to a victory for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump in the first televised debate between the two US presidential candidates. The survey revealed 62% of respondents believed the Democratic candidate defeated her Republican opponent during the event, which is believed to have attracted up to 100 million viewers.

The pair clashed on several issues, including Mr Trump claiming Mrs Clinton doesn't have the temperament needed to be president, while Mrs Clinton brought up Mr Trump's refusal to release his tax returns.

Both candidates said they were happy following the event, with Mrs Clinton describing it as a "great debate".