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Merkel says she will visit Macron to discuss EU reform

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday, two days before she is to launch her new government, that she will pay a quick visit to French President Emmanuel Macron to discuss EU reform proposals.Without naming a date, Merkel said she would visit Paris ahead of an EU summit late next week, to meet Macron ‘with the…

Angry Istanbul taxi drivers seek to block Uber

An Istanbul court on Monday began hearing a case against Uber brought by the city’s taxi drivers seeking to have the ride-hailing app blocked, as tensions mount in Turkey over its popularity.The suit brought by the main association representing taxi drivers for Istanbul is the latest legal headache for the fast-growing but controversial Uber which…

Dropbox IPO aiming to raise $748 mn

Cloud data service Dropbox aims to raise as much as $748 million through its initial public offering and a private sale of stock, according to an updated securities registration filed Monday.The company plans to sell 36 million shares of Class A stock at between $16 and $18, bringing in as much as $648 million, according…

Trump tariffs and Brexit bring geopolitics into focus

Will President Trump’s proposed steel tariffs lead to trade wars that drive confidence down? Also, concerns around Brexit and the UK Government means a long position on GBP makes sense.February offered investors a glimpse of what could happen if economic conditions and policy slightly shift on their respective axes. While our returns were not spectacular…

China to merge banking, insurance regulators in massive overhaul

China unveiled plans on Tuesday for the biggest shakeup of government in recent years, including the merger of its banking and insurance regulators to better handle financial risks as leaders look to address concerns over a growing debt pile.The proposed changes create new bureaus, do away with others, and shift around responsibilities.At the top of…

CommSec Daily Report Tuesday

Latest newsAfter some technical issues were resolved in the first hour of the session at the Australian Stock Exchange, the Aussie market is under some pressure. The ASX 200 is down by 0.6 per cent but has improved by more than 2 per cent over the prior three days. Earlier today indices were not updating…

Business & jobs conditions at highs

Business and jobs conditions at record highsBusiness survey; Consumer sentiment; Housing financeBusiness survey: The NAB business conditions index rose to a record high +20.8 pts in February from a downwardly revised +18.5 points (previously: +18.9 points) in January. The business confidence index fell to +9.2 points in February from a downwardly revised +10.7 points in…

I’m happy on the backbench: Barnaby Joyce

Barnaby Joyce insists he’s happy on the backbench while batting away questions about a political conspiracy to dump him from the Nationals leadership. WA Nationals leader Mia Davies last week denied there was a strategy to remove Mr Joyce after a leaked report suggested she was involved in a sexual harassment claim being sent to…

Victoria’s fresh bid for Chinese tourists

A rising Chinese star will front a fresh Victorian advertising campaign aimed at attracting a new wave of young, independent tourists to the state. The first Chinese tourism campaign in six years, it will feature actor Li Xian and a host of Melbourne and Victorian hotspots, including laneways, the Twelve Apostles, Yarra Valley and sporting…

NSW steel town worried about dumping

Local workers in the NSW steel manufacturing hub of Port Kembla are pleased Australia has been exempted from controversial US steel tariffs but concerned the local market could be flooded with cheap imports. While Canberra negotiated its way out of the 25 per cent tariff on steel sold to the US, some Wollongong workers are…