The Co-op's chief executive admits to a "diasastrous" year for the group, and will need to decide how to reform the sprawling group.
For the first time in nearly six years, average wages are rising faster than inflation.
The embattled chief executive brushed off speculation about his future despite no sign that his £1 billion plans are bearing fruit.
Business Secretary Vince Cable has called to "tighten-up the regime" of "rogue" directors, under new proposal to disqualify those convicted with overseas offences.
Speaking to ITV News, Mr Cable said: "There are some nasty scams out there, we've had them around wine shops and land banks... a lot of people have been cheated out of a lot of money".
British Gas has denied claims it paid its staff bonuses to inflate customers' bills.
According to the Daily Mail, a former employee said the policy encouraged staff to target charities and small businesses, with workers told they could triple their salary through commission if they sold enough of the most expensive deals as possible.
A British Gas spokeswoman said: "British Gas strongly refutes any suggestion that employees are paid commission on any prices charged to residential customers. This is a highly regulated and competitive market, every part of the sales negotiation process for business customers is closely monitored.
"We take very seriously any concerns raised by employees or customers, and our processes, as well as sales agents' terms, are regularly reviewed to ensure they are fair and appropriate."
Government proposals to implement more restrictions and punishments for so-called "dodgy directors" will protect Britain's economy, Business Secretary Vince Cable has said. He added:
The vast majority of directors in this country run their businesses in the right way. But some people have suffered unnecessary losses as a result of rogue behaviour.
Rogue directors can cause a huge amount of harm in terms of large financial losses, unnecessary redundancies and lifelong investments going down the drain. It is only right that we should put the toughest possible sanctions in place, make sure we stamp out unfair practices and deter those who are looking to act dishonestly.
The Government is set to bring forward proposals aiming to implement more restrictions and punishments for so-called "dodgy directors".
Directors convicted of a commercial offence overseas would be banned from running British companies under the plans, Business Secretary Vince Cable said.
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Bis) said courts could also be asked by the Government to award compensation against a disqualified director, although the court would have the final say.
It is understood the measures are expected to be brought forward as part of the Government's legislative programme for the next session of Parliament, which will be outlined in the Queen's Speech on June 4.
Barclays looks set to axe hundreds more jobs, mainly at its investment banking arm due to a strategic review that would be published on May 8.
The review is likely to mean hundreds of job cuts in addition to plans announced earlier this year by the bank to slash 12,000 posts.
Chief executive Antony Jenkins wrote to all group staff this morning, saying the company would answer questions including how best to "simplify" its operations and which of its businesses it should "focus on and invest in".
Mr Jenkins warned staff that regulation and the wider economy were having a "significant effect on some parts of our business which we need to address proactively".
He added: "The future for Barclays will be as a strong, focused, international bank. And the investment bank will continue to be part of that mix".
The chief executive has admitted the Co-operative's 'disastrous' £2.5bn losses for 2013 means that "thousands" of jobs will go from the organisation.
Richard Pennycook said: "I wouldn't want to pretend that there won't be job losses. We have said that there will.
"I don't want to put a specific number on [fewer people working for the Co-operative] but it will be a smaller group, some thousands of people smaller than that.
"Some of those because of our colleagues, in businesses that we are selling, will be going with those businesses to new owners."
He said that the group would remain a "very significant" employer in two years' time, adding that within four weeks the organisation's AGM would reveal the "new shape of the group", and a "clearer idea of how it is going to look".
Richard Pennycook admits job losses at @thecooperative inevitable as group shrinks. Currently employs 90,000 people.
The interim chief executive of the Co-operative said the group's losses arose principally from three causes.
– Richard Pennycook chief executive of the Co-operative group
Firstly, the continuing losses reported by the Bank as a result of the impairment of corporate loans, conduct issues and failed computer development projects.
Secondly, the write-off of our accumulated 115 year investment in the Bank following its emergency recapitalisation, in which we participated but in the process saw our shareholding fall from 100% to 30%.
And thirdly, a partial write-off of the goodwill created on the 2009 acquisition of the Somerfield food business following a strategic review of that business.
The final results for The Co-operative Group highlighted heavy losses that reflected:
- Significant losses at The Co-operative Bank (“the Bank”)
- Loss on reduction in Group’s shareholding in the Bank
- Impairment of goodwill which arose on the Somerfield acquisition
- Reduced sales in Food, impacted by disposal programme designed to focus business on its core convenience store chain
- Increased central corporate costs
The Co-operative Group has announced annual losses of £2.5 billion after suffering the worst crisis in its history following the near-collapse of its banking arm.
Interim chief executive Richard Pennycook said: "2013 was a disastrous year for the Co-operative Group, the worst in our 150-year history.
"Today's results demonstrate that but they also highlight fundamental failings in management and governance at the group over many years.
"These results should serve as a wake-up call to anyone who doubts just how serious the challenges we face are."