Politics & the Economy

WA the nation's bottom economy

Western Australia has fallen to the bottom of the pile in CommSec's latest 'State of the States' report, following the end of the mining construction boom.

Jobs market weak despite low jobless rate

September's national unemployment rate of 5.6 per cent was as low as it's been since February 2013, but that's about where the good news from the Australian Bureau of Statistics today ends.

WA lags nation on recycling: report

The state government has failed to hit any of the targets in its own waste management strategy, and part of the reason is a lack of coordination among its two key agencies, a review by the auditor general has found.

Barnett confirms Western Power IPO option

Premier Colin Barnett has confirmed plans for an initial public offering of Western Power are on the table, while the opposition has blamed the privatisation plans for the alleged cancellation of a contract with a major supplier.

Grylls skewers iron ore miners

Rio Tinto has hit back at accusations by Nationals WA leader Brendon Grylls that large miners had failed to live up to their contractual obligations in state agreements with the government, after he stepped up his campaign to increase taxes on iron ore production today.

Bob Day quits parliament as Collier Homes parent goes under

A key supporter of the federal government in the Senate, Family First's Bob Day, is quitting parliament because of financial problems with the housing group he founded, which trades as Collier Homes in Western Australia.

Divide between state, fed Nationals over ore tax

The state's resources industry has applauded Federal Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce's public opposition to the WA Nationals' planned mining tax changes, which drew return fire from Brendon Grylls.

Perth Mint doubles pre-tax profit

The state owned Gold Corporation, which trades as The Perth Mint, has doubled pre-tax profit to $41 million, with a big increase in sales of minted coins among the factors assisting the result.

Work begins at Kwinana lithium plant

A $400 million lithium hydroxide plant to supply the battery industry will bring highly skilled technical and scientific jobs with it, Premier Colin Barnett said at the facility's groundbreaking ceremony today in Kwinana.

UPDATED: Work to start on Roe 8

Work will start on the controversial $540 million Roe 8 highway extension project before the next state election, with a consortium led by CIMIC Group to be awarded a contract for the project in the coming days.

Minor changes, major effects

The economic downturn has hit the state hard but WA's fundamentals are still strong.

Liberal voters oppose Western Power sale

Almost half of Liberal voters in Treasurer Mike Nahan's safe seat of Riverton are opposed to the proposed privatisation of utility Western Power, according to ReachTel data.

McGowan won't expand fracking ban

WA Labor leader Mark McGowan has ruled out extending a ban on fracking beyond three regions if he wins the March state election.

Mining tax ideas 'damage WA's reputation'

Two different proposals from the Western Australian government to change the way Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton pay an iron ore charge is already damaging the state's reputation as an investment destination, a business lobby group says.

Ports, Water Corp among state earns

The state's five port authorities posted substantially lower net incomes in the 2016 financial year but were still in the black by $223 million, according to annual reports tabled in parliament in recent weeks.

BN30 a positive barometer

The Business News index of 30 Western Australian companies outperformed the ASX200 in the September quarter on the back of stronger showings from a handful of miners and contractors.

Share market edges lower at start

The Australian share market has edged slightly lower in early trade, despite a nearly flat session on Wall Street and continued strength in oil prices.

Construction activity expands in September

Engineering construction helped overall building activity return to expansion in September.

One Nation senator attacks WA courts

One Nation Senator Rod Culleton has attacked the judiciary in a press release after his latest court loss, demanding the civil matter be heard by a jury.

Has WA got what India takes?

India's economic potential offers opportunity for WA businesses, but questions remain as to whether the expectations of both sides can be met.