Here are the top business stories making the headlines in the morning newspapers.

Probe into SNP finances could be ‘wild goose chase’

The SNP's former spin doctor has said he is willing to bet that the police investigation into the party's finances will not result in any charges.

Murray Foote, who quit in March amid a row over membership figures, speculated the probe could be "wild goose chase" and branded it a "grotesque spectacle".

The BBC says SNP's former chief executive, Peter Murrell, and ex-treasurer Colin Beattie were arrested as part of the inquiry. Both were released without charge pending further investigation.

Officers also spent two days searching the Glasgow home of Mr Murrell and his wife - former first minister Nicola Sturgeon - and the party's headquarters in Edinburgh.

British Gas ending all activity with contractor

British Gas has said it will carry out any future force-fitting of prepayment meters itself following an outcry over how a contractor had behaved.

A report by the Times found agents acting for British Gas had forced their way into vulnerable people's homes.

A review found there had been "no systemic issues" with prepayment meters (PPMs) fitted under warrant.

However, it added that in a small number of cases, "things have gone wrong".

The revelations in the Times of how some people working for a third-party contractor - Arvato Financial Solutions - had behaved led to a temporary ban on all forced energy prepayment fittings.

The BBC says British Gas is "permanently" ending all activity with the contractor and would bring the work in-house.

Arvato said its contract with the company had been ended "by mutual agreement" as part of its decision to stop providing in-person debt-collection services.

Mortgage approvals on the rise

The number of mortgages approved in the UK for people buying a home rose sharply at the start of spring, Bank of England figures show.

The number of loan approvals for house purchases rose 18% between February and March, rising from 44,100 to 52,000.

It reflects signs of greater activity in the mortgage and housing sector following a slump late last year.

However, the BBC says the recovery remains relatively subdued with the latest figure below average.

Lack of consumer appetite for meat-free products

Sausage company Heck is reducing its range of meat-free products, citing lack of consumer appetite.

The Yorkshire-based firm is shelving production of most of its vegan range of sausages and burgers.

Co-founder Jamie Keeble said shoppers were "not there yet" when it came to buying its vegan products.

The company will now make just two plant-based varieties - chipolatas and burgers - down from its original range of 10.

The BBC says Heck's decision comes against a backdrop of waning interest in meat-free lines at other firms.

Beyond Meat, which makes a plant-based range including burgers, sausages and chicken, suffered a slump in sales last year, blaming obstacles with consumers around taste, perception of health benefits and price.

And industry giant Nestle said in March it would stop selling its Garden Gourmet plant-based vegan brand in UK retailers less than two years after it first appeared on shelves.

Interest rates in eurozone on way up

Christine Lagarde has signalled that interest rates in the eurozone will have to rise towards record highs to stop the economy from overheating as she warned that the fight against inflation was far from over.

The president of the European Central Bank (ECB) warned policymakers had "more ground to cover" to keep a lid on price rises, which increased at an annual pace of 7% in the year to April.

"We are not pausing, that is very clear," she told reporters after the ECB lifted all three of its key interest rates by 0.25%, taking the deposit rate to a 15-year high of 3.25%.

The Telegraph says Ms Lagarde indicated that interest rates may be pushed to their record highs of 3.75% last seen in 2000 as she said monetary policy needs to be "sufficiently restrictive" to bring inflation down to the ECB's 2% target.

It came as UK data suggested the Bank of England may have to keep raising interest rates towards 5% in order to keep a lid on inflation.

Sales down again at Apple

Sales at tech giant Apple have continued to fall, as the economy slows and buyers, squeezed by rising prices, put off purchases of computers and iPads.

The company said revenues slipped 3% in the first three months of the year compared with the same period in 2022 to £75.4billion.

That marked a second quarter in a row of sales declines for the company.

But the BBC says the fall was not as bad as feared, as demand for iPhones held up and the firm won new customers overseas.

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