The midyear budget statement at a glance

TREASURER Scott Morrison has announced new savings in the Mid Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook including a crackdown on welfare payments, health cuts and tougher means testing for childcare. Here’s what the MYEFO statement means at a glance. • The deficit is up 6.5 per cent from $35.1b to $37.4b • The projected return to surplus has been delayed one ... Read More »

Why Australia’s hot weather is bad for our economy

I LOVE summer. Hot weather just feels like Australia. It’s as if the essence of this nation hibernates all winter and comes out in late spring, with a hard-earned thirst. But here’s the thing. Hot weather is bad for business. You might think demand for SPF 30+, Golden Gaytimes and last minute air conditioning installations is enough to keep the ... Read More »

Finance news you need to know today

HERE are seven things making news in business and finance around the world today. 1. BRUSSELS — The European Union has extended economic sanctions against Russia until the end of July next year after the deadline for raising objections passed without any member state challenging the decision. 2. MADRID — Spain has entered the political unknown after the most fragmented ... Read More »

Weak Australian dollar brings Christmas joy for tourism industry, but bad news for travellers

TRAVELLERS heading overseas this Christmas are carrying an Aussie dollar at its lowest December levels in seven years. Economists expect the currency weakness to continue in the year ahead, but the financial pain felt by some holiday-makers has translated into Christmas joy to local tourism operators and several other sectors. Our dollar last had a Christmas near US70c in 2008, ... Read More »

Australian market set to open higher

THE Australian market looks set to open higher, following gains of around one per cent on Wall Street. At 0649 AEDT on Thursday, the March share price index futures contract was up 64 points at 5,162. US stocks are higher for a third consecutive session, led by strength in energy stocks, as a bounce in oil prices boosts confidence ahead ... Read More »

Australian dollar’s rally ends

THE Australian dollar is lower as the sellers come into the market following the currency’s three-session rally. At 0630 AEDT on Thursday, the local unit was trading at 72.29 US cents, down from 72.41 cents on Wednesday. Metals prices are consolidating after rising for several days, ending the Australian dollar’s rally. CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT ON THURSDAY One Australian ... Read More »

Sports Direct lashes out as Findel rejects planned board member

Findel warned shareholders that Sports Direct was a direct competitor of its online football kit store, Kitbag. Photograph: Dinendra Haria/Demotix/Corbis Sports Direct has accused Findel of under-delivering for shareholders after its attempt to put a representative on the board of the online retailer was rebuffed. Nearly 81% of shareholders who voted came out against a resolution to appoint Ben Gardener ... Read More »

M&S hopes Christmas shoppers will splash out on super-sized prosecco

Prosecco has become the fizz of choice, with British shoppers spending more on the Italian wine than champagne. It’s also good with cake, apparently. Photograph: Alamy Marks & Spencer has launched a jeroboam of prosecco – the biggest such bottle of the Italian fizz on the UK high street – for families and friends to share a super-sized Christmas or ... Read More »

UK breached EU rules over City bonuses

City of London skyline. Barclays is one of the banks which had to change the terms of its role-based pay to comply with the EBA rules. Photograph: Jon Arnold/JAI/Corbis The UK faces a showdown with Europe after being found to have breached the directive which introduced a crackdown on bankers’ bonuses. The European Banking Authority reached the conclusion as the ... Read More »

Rolls-Royce boss expresses ‘disquiet’ over diesel engines division

Rolls-Royce worker with the company’s MT30 engine. Warren East could not rule out further profit warnings. Photograph: Rolls Royce/PA Rolls-Royce’s chief executive has raised concerns about prospects for the company’s diesel engine business as he grapples with the group’s weak financial performance and unwieldy structure. Warren East, who took over at the aerospace company in July, said he felt uneasy ... Read More »