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Business investment lifts

Business Investment: the most positive in 12 yearsBusiness InvestmentInvestment rises: New business investment (spending on buildings and equipment) rose by 1.0 per cent in the September quarter after a 1.1 per cent lift in the June quarter.Expected business investment: The fourth estimate of investment in 2017/18 is $108.9 billion and is 1.6 per cent higher…

Townhouse approvals at 20-year highs

Townhouse approvals at 20-year highsPrivate sector credit; Building approvals; China manufacturing & servicesLending: Private sector credit (lending) rose by 0.4 per cent in October after a 0.3 per cent rise in September. Annual credit growth fell to 5.3 per cent in October from 5.4 per cent in September.Dwelling approvals: Approvals by local councils to build…

Fed survey shows signs of inflation, rising wages in US

US price pressures have strengthened and wages are showing some signs of life after an extended period of mysteriously low inflation, according to a Federal Reserve survey released Wednesday.The Fed’s so-called beige book survey, which gathers reports from businesses across the nation, offers another sign the central bank is likely to raise interest rates at…

Australia calls banking inquiry to quell public anger

An independent inquiry into the Australian financial services sector was announced Thursday in a bid to quell public anger at the massively profitable banking system after a series of scandals.The country’s ‘big four’ lenders – among the developed world’s most wealthy – have been under scrutiny in recent years amid allegations of dodgy financial advice,…

Perth to test driverless Uber service

Perth has been chosen as one of three cities in the world to test a driverless, ride-sharing service similar to Uber as part of a global trial of autonomous, electric-powered cars. The fully electric-powered Autonoms cars can carry up to six passengers and reach a top speed of 90km/h, although they will be restricted to…

Bishop talks Brexit opportunities for Aust

Australia is hoping to cash in from the United Kingdom’s divorce from the European Union. Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has held talks with Britain’s trade minister Liam Fox during his visit to Sydney this week. She talked up the prospects of increasing Australian service exports to the UK once the two countries reach a free…

Super reducing reliance on the pension

Fewer Australians are relying on the age pension than 20 years ago, an indication that the national retirement scheme is successful, the peak superannuation body says. Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia chief executive Martin Fahy said there are six common myths associated with superannuation that have been eroding public confidence in the $2.5 trillion…

SEEK shares fall despite earnings upgrade

SEEK shares have slumped despite the job ads group upgrading its full-year earnings forecast, with the tipped 13 per cent rise seeming to fall short of investors’ expectations. Chief executive Andrew Bassat told the company’s annual general meeting on Wednesday that pre-tax earnings for 2017/18 are now expected to swell by about 13 per cent…

Collins Foods half-year profit hits a snag

Restaurant operator Collins Foods is closing its fledgling Snag Stand business as it launches Taco Bell and focuses on its lucrative KFC restaurants. Collins Foods has posted a 17.5 per cent fall in half-year profit to $12.7 million due to $4.7 million in one-off costs, including the closure of Snag Stand and the acquisition of…

Energy plan too important to rush: Finkel

Energy companies won’t get investment certainty for new projects until at least April, but Chief Scientist Alan Finkel says the Turnbull government’s new energy policy is too important to rush. He wants to see the details of the new plan, saying getting it right is crucially important for Australian households and businesses. ‘As long as…

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