The Exchange is refusing to comment on the new market, which is expected to be called Techmark and would be the first in the UK aimed at fast-growing Internet and technology companies which are looking to raise more capital. The government has been keen to emulate the success of IT start-up companies in the US and Techmark would also provide a natural spin-off from London's Alternative Investment Market. Founded in 1995, AIM allows smaller companies to list without the strict qualifying criteria that apply to the main index, such as a three-year trading record. Big Five corporate practices have been keen to build up clients in the technology sector, and Robert Conway, PricewaterhouseCooper's global technology industry leader for financial advisory services, said: 'NASDAQ has been phenomenally successful in attracting hi-tech stocks but AIM hasn't. London needs to respond.' In July the profile of Internet start-up companies was raised dramatically when Freeserve, the largest UK Internet service provider, floated on the London Stock Exchange for £1.5bn. But last week Oracle, the US enterprise software giant, revealed it had been unable to find any UK Internet start-ups to receive a slice of $100m (£62.4m), offered by venture capitalists to trailblazing Internet businesses.
Some parts of Atacama have not received rainfall for 500 years - but a sudden deluge of water upset the Desert's delicate biological balance
Spitzer Space Telescope could not spot Oumuamua, suggesting that it is actually pretty small
Greenland crater one of the 25 largest impact craters on Earth
This long-sought progenitor star was identified in an image captured by Hubble in 2007