Latest unemployment figures reveal that 16,000 more people are out of work in the West Midlands, yet an unchanged scene for the East
Tomorrow could see one Midlands household crowned Britain's most money savvy family in a national competition.
A Report is being launched today by Lord Heseltine, exploring ways of stimulating economic growth in the West Midlands.
Is graffiti just vandalism, or something more? Many public bodies are losing their suspicion of the spray-can and asking graffiti artists to turn bare buildings into works of art.
But the criminal damage element has not gone away. Leicester City Council says two graffiti writers have cost them £100,000 in six months.
They are now offering £500 for information about their identities. Callum Watkinson reports.
Leicester City Council says two graffiti writers have cost it £100,000 in just six-months.
'Kase' and 'SO12', have plastered thousands of so called 'tags' across the city. The council is offering £500 for information.
Clearing the graffiti from the past 6 months alone has already used up two fifths of the council's cleaning budget.
Ten new high street shops are up and running, and bringing in cash, thanks to retail guru Mary Portas.
She promoted a £10 million fund designed to give money to people to open shops on our high streets.
Mark Gough reports.
The dangers of borrowing money from loan sharks will be explained at an exhibition in Leicester this week.
Today, a mural on the theme, produced as part of an urban art workshop, will be unveiled at the Cort Crescent Community Centre.
It shows a shark and was designed by local youngsters.
"This campaign will highlight what people should look out for when considering borrowing money, and how to report it if they have fallen prey to loan sharks."
Cllr Sarah Russell, Leicester Assistant City Mayor for neighbourhood services,
There are more jobs available now in the West Midlands, compared with the first three months of last year.
Figures released today show that the number has gone up by almost 10 percent.
The biggest rises have been in the accountancy and education industries, whilst the number of available jobs in the customer services industry has gone down.
– Roma Aitken, Regional Manager for totaljobs.com in the West Midlands.
Although a rise in employment opportunities is welcomed news, we continue to see a fall in full-time permanent positions, rising underemployment and increases in inactivity.
The government, local authorities and businesses must continue to work together to strengthen the fragile recovery and return unemployment figures back to precession levels in the West Midlands.
House prices in the Midlands are down compared to March last year, despite a rise nationally.
Figures show that prices in the East Midlands have fallen by almost one percent – while prices for properties in the West Midlands have dropped by almost four percent.
Nationally, house prices have increased by seven per cent.
The Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce remains optimistic about the local economy.
This comes after a Leicestershire firm that makes wet wipes has seen an increase in export sales.
Most other companies in the East Midlands manufacturing and service sectors have only had a slight increase in exports since last year.
A company in Leicestershire has seen an increase in export sales this year.
Pal International makes wet wipes and clothing for workers in the catering industry.
The Managing Director, Alex Brucciani, has told ITV News Central a difficult UK economy has led to his company investing in overseas markets.
A Leicestershire company has seen exports increase despite the economic downturn.
The company makes wet wipes and clothing for workers in the catering industry.
They said sales increased by 20% this year compared to the first quarter of 2012.
The British Chamber of Commerce believe the weak pound has helped to boost sales overseas.
Speed cameras across the West Midlands have been turned off.
West Midlands Police made the decision last year. It can no longer afford to run them.
The last of 304 fixed speed cameras across the region were turned off yesterday afternoon.
Police will now use mobile cameras in speeding hot spots across Birmingham, Coventry, and the Black Country.