Australia Business & Economics
Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh to woo Australian investors
Number of borrowers behind on mortgage repayments drops in September quarter
Markets Live: ASX set to jump
‘Every time you buy less’: Venezuela teeters on the brink
Warren Buffett says cryptocurrencies will almost certainly ‘come to a bad ending’
Warren Buffett says cryptocurrencies will 'almost certainly come to a bad ending'
Blockchain energy trading startup Power Ledger to pitch to Richard Branson after becoming Extreme Tech Challenge finalist
2018-01-19 12:23:00 Emerging Aussie blockchain startup Power Ledger will soon find itself pitching its power trading platform to Sir Richard Branson himself after getting into the finals of the Extreme Tech Challenge pitch competition in Las Vegas last Friday. The pitch comp is one of the world’s largest, held at the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and judged by members of the international startup community   Read More ...
Building sub-contractors worry about tough 2018 as experts warn there's mixed news on construction trends
2018-01-19 12:22:47 There could be troubled times ahead for small businesses and contractors working in construction, with property analysts and economists kicking of the year with predictions the residential apartment sector slowdown could cause pain. “There is absolutely no question we have seen a considerable softening in the construction end of the residential apartment space,” Watpac managing director Martin Monro warned inoday. While data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows new housing starts in the year to September rebounded, experts and industry leaders have been divided in commentary on the state of the sector and what the next 12 months will hold for builders and their suppliers   Read More ...
Markets Live: ASX struggles to lift
2018-01-19 08:23:57 And that's it for Markets Live this week. Thanks for reading and for your comments. Have a great weekend and see you all again Monday morning from 9. Shares ended the week on a sour note, as investors shrugged off new records on Wall Street and some strong upbeat economic indicators to push the ASX lower over the five sessions   Read More ...
ASX sags but Australian dollar dazzles
2018-01-19 08:23:48 Shares ended the week on a sour note, as investors shrugged off new records on Wall Street and some strong upbeat economic indicators to push the ASX lower over the five sessions. The S&P/ASX 200 sharemarket index slipped 9 points on Friday to 6006 points, and shed 64 points, or 1.1 per cent, over the week. Friday's session marked the fourth consecutive daily fall for the benchmark measure, although the last two sessions combined only subtracted a combined 10 points   Read More ...
Bitcoin's rally gains steam as IMF urges investors to be 'aware of risks'
2018-01-19 08:21:34 The January rollercoaster for cryptocurrency investors eased on Thursday as Bitcoin held onto gains after roaring back from its first plunge below $US10,000 since December. Bitcoin climbed 6.1 per cent to $US12,069, a Bloomberg. composite pricing showed. It stayed above $US10,000 all day, following a frantic 24 hours in which the token swung through a $US2,600 range. Rivals ethereum and litecoin both rose more than 5 per cent, while Ripple jumped 26 per cent   Read More ...
Is the 'dumbest idea' in capitalism on its last legs?
2018-01-19 08:19:02 It has been described as the 'dumbest idea in the world', it might be the worst idea in finance, and it looks like it's finally falling out of favour. No, not bitcoin, although the virtual currency (my views on which are clear) also appears to be losing its lustre, as evidenced by its price plunge this week. A backlash is brewing against the theory that has underpinned the past three decades of capitalism - the concept of 'shareholder value'   Read More ...
ASIC warns advisers over 'widespread' false witnessing
2018-01-19 06:38:09 There is a "widespread" problem with financial advisers cutting corners when clients sign a key superannuation document, the corporate cop has warned, ordering the industry to lift its game. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission on Friday said many advisers were failing to comply with the law when clients signed a document that sets out who will receive their superannuation and insurance benefits if the client dies   Read More ...
Construction manager with links to Tax Office sting arrested in Belgrade bust
2018-01-19 06:33:32 A wealthy property developer entangled in the Australian Taxation Office fraud sting is accused of playing a key role in an international cocaine syndicate smashed in Serbia on Tuesday. Tristan Edward Waters, 34, Rohan Arnold, 44, and David Campbell, 48, were arrested in the five-star Metropol Palas Hotel in Belgrade on Tuesday after a nine-month investigation into what Serbian media labelled the "Waters' cartel"   Read More ...
Australia, Japan committed to signing Asia Pacific trade pact by March: Turnbull
2018-01-18 12:45:09 TOKYO (REUTERS) - Australia and Japan are committed to signing an Asia Pacific trade deal by March with countries in the region ready to forge a pact to replace the derailed Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Thursday (Jan 18). "Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe and I are personally committed to having this deal signed and sealed by March," Turnbull said in a speech in Tokyo   Read More ...
Five tennis Grand Slam winners who are also business leaders
2018-01-18 12:11:57 Not content with just mastering the art of tennis, this group of Grand Slam winners have taken their focus, determination and grit off court and applied the traits to their growing business ventures. Andy Murray Sitting out this year’s Australian Open might give Murray time to focus on his successful side business as a hotelier. In 2013 the Scot bought a Victorian mansion near his home town of Dunblane for a reported £1   Read More ...
Australia's Electronic Health Record Program Already Showing Benefits
2018-01-18 12:08:14 In what may be the most comprehensive national effort of its kind, the Australian government has created more than 5.4 million electronic medical records and plans to offer EMRs to the country’s 24 million citizens by the end of 2018. The records contain information about each individual’s serious illnesses, surgeries, prescribed medications, and family medical histories—information that can be critical to making correct diagnoses   Read More ...
Australia and Japan committed to signing Asia Pacific trade pact by March, Turnbull says
2018-01-18 09:09:14 TOKYO (Reuters) - Australia and Japan are committed to signing an Asia Pacific trade deal by March with countries in the region ready to forge a pact to replace the derailed Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Thursday “Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe and I are personally committed to having this deal signed and sealed by March,” Turnbull said during a speech in Tokyo   Read More ...
Market punishes Whitehaven on the back of lowered guidance
2018-01-18 08:12:13 Whitehaven investors have punished the company for cutting its expected output after issues at its Narrabri coal mine. The ASX's best performed coal pure play miner suffered a reversal of rare proportions in recent times on Thursday when 6.18 per cent was sliced from its share price. The slump came after the company's quarterly update showed that underground mine stability issues at its Narrabri coal mine had lifted operating costs and trimeed its previous production guidance by between seven and nine per cent lower   Read More ...
Australia and Japan committed to signing Asia Pacific trade pact by March, Turnbull says
2018-01-18 07:47:03 TOKYO (Reuters) - Australia and Japan are committed to signing an Asia Pacific trade deal by March with countries in the region ready to forge a pact to replace the derailed Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Thursday. "Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe and I are personally committed to having this deal signed and sealed by March," Turnbull said during a speech in Tokyo   Read More ...
ASX extends losing streak to three sessions
2018-01-18 07:07:53 Australian shares extended their current losing streak to three sessions on Thursday, as investors contrasted a raft of company updates with sharp Wall St gains that were made amid optimism over corporate earnings trends. The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 1 point to 6014, while the All Ordinaries index declined 3 points to 6130. The Australian dollar traded at US79.63¢ following strong jobs data for December that nonetheless did little to change interest rate expectations   Read More ...
Former CBA planner banned after cutting and pasting signatures
2018-01-18 05:06:56 A former Commonwealth Bank financial planner has been banned from the industry for five years after the corporate regulator alleged she cut customer signatures from documents kept on file and pasted them onto new documents. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission on Thursday said it had banned Kimberly Holgate, of Wagga Wagga, for conduct that was likely to mislead clients, and was not in their best interests   Read More ...
Aussie dollar tops US80¢ to hit four-month high
2018-01-18 04:09:27 The Australian dollar pushed above US80¢ early Thursday morning, extending a powerful upswing in the currency that has seen it climb US5 cents in a little over a month. The currency is now at around a four-month high against its US counterpart. The Aussie spiked as high as US80.2 cents as traders on Wall Street fretted over the potential for a US government shutdown should policymakers prove unable to agree on a long-term funding plan by the Friday deadline   Read More ...
Bitcoin 'bubble' prices 'have a lot further to fall', Capital Economics analysts warn
2018-01-18 04:08:59 Bitcoin will not replace national currencies and cryptocurrency prices are in one of the biggest bubbles in history, which is set to burst, warn analysts from Capital Economics. In a 13-page research note, London-based economists Vicky Redwood and Kerrie Walsh outline in detail their reasons for believing that bitcoin does not have a bright long-term future, even if the blockchain technology behind it does   Read More ...
Did Bitcoin just burst? How it compares to history's big bubbles
2018-01-18 01:12:30 Bitcoin's recent wobbles have given fresh urgency to a question that's gripped market observers for much of the past year: Will the cryptocurrency go down as one of history's most infamous bubbles, alongside tulipmania and the dot-com craze? The magnitude of Bitcoin's boom (before it lost as much as 50 per cent from its December 18 high) suggests investors have reason to be worried   Read More ...
Inside the feral animal trade
2018-01-18 01:11:58 Fancy working under the stars, camping out for weeks on end and staring down savage cats, snarling dogs and charging boars? It's all in a night's work for the clutch of Aussies who've built small businesses in the feral animal control sector. Until recently, their number included Stephen Andrew, the former feral pig shooter and weapons dealer who won the seat of Mirani for One Nation at the Queensland elections last November   Read More ...
Aussie dollar tops US80¢ to hit four-month high
2018-01-18 01:11:41 The Australian dollar pushed above US80¢ early Thursday morning, extending a powerful upswing in the currency that has seen it climb US5 cents in a little over a month. The currency is now at around a four-month high against its US counterpart. The Aussie spiked as high as US80.2 cents as traders on Wall Street fretted over the potential for a US government shutdown should policymakers prove unable to agree on a long-term funding plan by the Friday deadline   Read More ...
Online food delivery set to become $2.4 billion market, but is it a "formula for making money"?
2018-01-18 00:17:11 Digital disruption in fast-food retail is gathering even more pace, with new research showing online aggregators like Deliveroo and UberEats are booming in Australia. The report from Morgan Stanley shows that since Menulog delivered its first meal in Australia back in 2006, the industry has grown into a $600 million market, with an expectation it will grow to $2.4 billion by 2025   Read More ...
Inside the growing movement for small businesses to boycott the Australia Day holiday on January 26
2018-01-18 00:17:04 By John Nelder and Emma Koehn. As millions of Aussies prepare to fire up the barbie ahead of Australia Day, there’s a growing band of businesses that won’t be joining them. Book publisher Affirm Press in South Melbourne is the latest small business to have joined the ranks of those boycotting the holiday. Instead, its 11 staff will be working right through it as a show of support for changing Australia Day to a more inclusive date for the nation’s First Peoples   Read More ...
Meet Zookal: A startup with AI capabilities pushing the limits
2018-01-18 00:16:55 From a bedroom-based startup to a multi-million dollar company with strong roots in Asia, Zookal’s young entrepreneurs have created something the world’s never seen before. Tucked away in an industrial park in Sydney lies Zookal HQ. It’s an unassuming location for a startup that’s helped hundreds of thousands of university students by renting them textbooks. Zookal’s CEO and co-founder Ahmed Haider said the team’s goal was to make education more accessible and had sent out 170,000 books in 2016 alone   Read More ...
Three important factors that influence who will become an entrepreneur
2018-01-18 00:16:46 It’s not uncommon for company founders to describe themselves as being born to be an entrepreneur; they feel destined to build their own ventures. However, research released in November last year sheds some light on some of the key factors that influence who will become an entrepreneur. Writing for Inc., Steve Blakeman, managing director of global accounts for OMD, observed “the age-old debate of nature versus nurture has resurfaced”, with new research suggesting the secret to becoming an entrepreneur lies in “being involved in an entrepreneurial culture from a young age”   Read More ...
Brisbane retailer warns other businesses to be vigilant after being hit with $76,000 cyber crime
2018-01-18 00:16:40 The director of a Queensland workwear business who was the victim of a cyber attack says banks should do more to ensure fraudulent accounts aren’t opened by cyber criminals, after having supplier account details changed so scammers could fleece $76,000 in payments. The Brisbane store of safety wear brand Totally Workwear had its accounting system compromised in October last year, but the business only recently found out about the situation after a creditor told them there was a problem with their invoice payment   Read More ...
Apple expects to pay $47 billion tax on repatriated cash
2018-01-17 20:28:22 Apple said it will bring hundreds of billions of overseas dollars back to the US, pay about $US38 billion ($47.4 billion) in taxes on the money and invest tens of billions on domestic jobs, manufacturing and data centres in the coming years. The iPhone maker plans capital expenditures of $US30 billion in the US over five years and will create 20,000 new jobs at existing sites and a new campus it intends to open, the Cupertino, California-based company said Wednesday in a statement   Read More ...
Bitcoin's plunge hits Winklevoss twins, turning them into ex-billionaires
2018-01-17 20:28:14 What bitcoin giveth, bitcoin taketh away. Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, the twin brothers who became billionaires after the run-up in the price of bitcoin and other digital assets toward the end of last year, have seen their fortunes drop 37 per cent in the past month as the cryptocurrency plunged. Bitcoin dipped below $US10,000 Wednesday, extending a rout that has sliced $US443 million from the net worth of each brother, leaving them with $US739 million apiece, at least on paper, according to the Bloomberg   Read More ...
What kind of company sells a dud like this to its customers?
2018-01-17 14:17:19 It is tempting to wonder why a person might pay more than $6000 for insurance cover that was capped at a maximum payout of $6000 – or why someone would buy an insurance policy under which they were never eligible to make a claim. But the real question should be why a company would treat its own customers that way by selling them such a policy? There can be no justification for such behaviour   Read More ...
'I actually don't quite care': Australian bitcoin investors hang tough
2018-01-17 14:17:03 Australian bitcoin investors are refusing to be spooked by the cryptocurrency's wild volatility, saying its steep drop in value was a "healthy step" in the virtual currency's brief history. Bitcoin - the world's largest digital coin - fell below $US11,000 ($AU13,800) on Wednesday, which was its lowest value since late December 2017. Bitcoin also peaked in December, at nearly $US20,000 ($AU25,000) per coin, after it was worth just over $US5,500 ($AU6,900) in mid October   Read More ...
Dump corporate tax cut and invest in public services, CPSU tells Coalition
2018-01-17 14:16:35 The Coalition should cap contractor numbers, dump a $65 billion corporate tax cut and invest money in its agencies to rebuild services, the main public sector union has said ahead of the federal budget. In a submission to the government lashing its growing use of contractors, and rejecting its controversial push to relocate agencies to the bush, the Community and Public Sector Union also called for more Tax Office funding to increase revenue made stopping corporate tax avoidance   Read More ...
Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh to woo Australian investors
2018-01-17 11:39:15 Chhattisgarh is keen to attract investments from resource-rich Australia, said Chief Minister Raman Singh who is here on a visit to explore opportunities to deepen business relations with this vast country. Singh, who is on a 10-day official visit, told a group of investors on Tuesday that Chhattisgarh was well equipped in terms of investor-friendly policies and availability of resources including low cost power   Read More ...
ASX sags under mining sector weight
2018-01-17 08:22:41 Australian shares fell back to levels last seen in December on Wednesday, as investors took a gloomy view of the heavyweight miners and sold out of the sector. The S&P/ASX 200 index dropped 32 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 6015. The All Ordinaries lost 31 points, or 0.5 per cent, to trade at 6134. The Australian dollar reached US79.54¢. Miners took 22 points off the benchmark index, with BHP falling 2   Read More ...
'I just felt ripped off' - consumer rage at junk insurance
2018-01-17 08:21:46 Sitting in the caryard with his pregnant wife Ryan Broom felt keen pressure to make the right decision when buying a car for his family. He had agreed to outlay a bit more than $30,000 for a Nissan X-Trail but then the salesman started to push on insurance. Broom eventually spent another $4000 buying Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) Insurance as well as Tyre and Rim Insurance (TRI) when he bought his Nissan X-Trail in April 2015   Read More ...
How technology is keeping a lid on inflation
2018-01-17 07:02:44 Digital gadgets such as the iPhone have well and truly transformed how many of us go shopping, entertain ourselves and stay in touch with friends. But here's another result of the online revolution you may not know about: it's keeping inflation lower for longer, and dampening growth in pay packets, too. One of the biggest questions hanging over the economy in 2018 is whether inflation and wage growth can finally recover from historic lows   Read More ...
Cryptocurrency crash as bitcoin and other prices tumble
2018-01-17 07:01:48 Cryptocurrencies have been heavily sold off, amid fresh fears of a major regulatory crackdown in South Korea. Key points: Bitcoin prices plunged more than 20pc at some points in the past day Other major cryptocurrencies had falls of more than 40 per cent Falls are due to concerns that South Korea will ban cryptocurrency trading Bitcoin has seen its price drop by more than 20 per cent, to well under $US11,000, after the South Korean finance minister said in a radio interview that a ban on trading cryptocurrencies was a live option   Read More ...
Allianz, Suncorp to repay more than $60m over unnecessary car insurance
2018-01-17 07:00:41 By consumer affairs reporter Sarah Farnsworth and business reporter Stephanie Chalmers Insurance giants Allianz and Suncorp will refund a combined $65.2 million to more than 100,000 customers who were sold valueless add-on insurance through car dealerships. Key points: Allianz and Suncorp have been reprimanded by the corporate regulator as part of an ongoing review of add-on insurance sold through car yards ASIC found several products from the insurers provided "little or no value" to customers Allianz will refund $45   Read More ...
World's top money manager tells CEOs: Profits aren't enough, do good for society
2018-01-17 06:35:24 than 1,000 CEOs around the globe received a letter on Tuesday from one of the world's most influential money managers with a pointed message: Simply posting good financial returns is no longer enough. You must have a positive impact on society, too. In his annual letter to CEOs, Laurence Fink, the chairman and CEO of BlackRock, which manages nearly $US6.3 trillion ($7   Read More ...
Markets Live: ASX skids on miners
2018-01-17 06:35:06 Australian shares fell back to levels last seen in December on Wednesday, as investors took a gloomy view of the heavyweight miners and sold out of the sector. The S&P/ASX 200 index dropped 32 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 6015. The All Ordinaries lost 31 point. or 0.5 per cent, to trade at 6134. The Australian dollar reached US79.54¢ against the US dollar   Read More ...
For the crazy brave, the Bit-thingy may well bounce – like a dead cat
2018-01-17 06:34:48 It’s awfully tempting to say I (and just about everyone else) told you so as the alleged “cryptocurrencies” plunge – but there are good reasons to think this isn’t the end of this particular speculative mania. For a start, the vast majority of crypto-trading-cards are held by relatively few people, who therefore have a large vested interest in trying to hold a line in the virtual sand   Read More ...