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1.43pm BST

The UK government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme launched today. It offers a 50% discount on food, up to a maximum of £10 per person, at more than 72,000 participating restaurants from Monday to Wednesday, until 31 August.

Business and industry minister Nadhim Zahawi told BBC Breakfast that he thought “it will make a huge difference”.

It’s worth all of us going out and if the government is supporting the sector, why not?

We should all absolutely make sure that we go out and enjoy that restaurant.”

⬆️ More than 72,000 individual restaurants registered
Over 3.3m searches on the restaurant finder
50% off all day and night, £10 per person
Unlimited Mon-Wed, no vouchers needed.

Eat Out to Help Out starts today:

Lovely breakfast our this morning at The Selsey Arms in West Dean. Making the most of the Eat out scheme. The place was busy which bodes well

1.30pm BST

Shares are powering ahead, with the FTSE 100 index in London gaining 75 points to 5,973, a 1.3% rise, and the Dax in Frankfurt 2.5% ahead. The CAC in Paris added 1.6%, the FTSE MiB rose almost 1% and the Ibex in Madrid was up 0.6%.

In London, the takeaway service Just Eat is the biggest riser, up more than 4%. HSBC remains the second-biggest faller, down 3.9%, after reporting a big drop in profits and larger bad-debt provisions.

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