18/05/2020 - 07:18

Morning Headlines

18/05/2020 - 07:18

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Perth is test case for return to office

Fortescue and Wesfarmers staff will start returning to their Perth and Brisbane offices from today amid warnings from Rio Tinto that workers’ willingness to return amid a pandemic will help determine the speed of the economic recovery. The Fin

China offers carrot with trade stick

China has sought to diffuse tensions with Australia, insisting it is committed to the free trade deal and would like the two countries to ‘‘work together’’ despite disagreement over the Morrison government’s proposed coronavirus inquiry. The Fin

Fast track to jobs in Pilbara

Hundreds of jobs will be created in the East Pilbara as a result of a major critical minerals project getting extra support from the Federal Government. The West

PM’s post-pandemic powerplay

Scott Morrison will urge a new industrial compact between workers, employers, unions and government to boost employment and forge a re-modelled economy after the pandemic, while signalling a new and more effective federation emerging from the crisis. The Aus

Hostplus was warned on liquidity risk

Industry super fund Hostplus quietly shifted the goalposts on its definition of ‘‘illiquid assets’’ and doubled down on its risky investment strategy after red flags were raised, a leaked research report has revealed. The Fin

Wool prices collapse as markets seize

Wool prices have plunged to five-year lows as farmers receive another stark reminder of how reliant they are on China. The Fin

Banks warned: Don’t pull the plug too early

The small business ombudsman has urged banks to support businesses well beyond the hibernation stage of the COVID-19 crisis, as lenders prepare to ‘‘check in’’ at the end of June with borrowers who requested a repayment holiday. The Fin

Retailers want banks to cut tap-and-go fees

As ‘‘tap-and-go’’ payments surge during COVID-19, retailers are being slugged unnecessarily high fees because banks are still sending contactless payments down the more costly credit card networks rather than the cheaper Eftpos system. The Fin

Call to cull Virgin bidders to two

Virgin Australia administrator Vaughan Strawbridge of Deloitte is under mounting pressure to cut the shortlist of bidders for the collapsed airline to only two as quickly as possible, as some parties that lodged first-round indicative offers on Friday could walk away from the process. The Aus

 

 

The Australian Financial Review

Page 1: China has sought to diffuse tensions with Australia, insisting it is committed to the free trade deal and would like the two countries to ‘‘work together’’ despite disagreement over the Morrison government’s proposed coronavirus inquiry.

Industry super fund Hostplus quietly shifted the goalposts on its definition of ‘‘illiquid assets’’ and doubled down on its risky investment strategy after red flags were raised, a leaked research report has revealed.

Page 3: Buyers in several capital cities across the country emerged from lockdown on Saturday for the first time since March to compete in person for the few properties going to auction, but clearance rates from low volumes show caution is still in the air.

Page 4: Wool prices have plunged to five-year lows as farmers receive another stark reminder of how reliant they are on China.

Australia would build 500,000 public housing properties and guarantee anyone under 30 a job, training place or free higher education under a Greens plan to rebuild the economy after COVID-19.

Page 6: Australia’s world-leading response to the COVID-19 crisis may dramatically lower the extent of debt required by the Morrison government to support the economy, providing a boost to global fixed-income investors that have rushed to buy the nation’s bonds.

Page 8: Fortescue and Wesfarmers staff will start returning to their Perth and Brisbane offices from today amid warnings from Rio Tinto that workers’ willingness to return amid a pandemic will help determine the speed of the economic recovery.

Page 9: For Generation Z, the COVID-19 pandemic could prove a career-defining moment as companies look to leverage their skills as digital natives.

Page 11: After a three-year battle against Australian anti-dumping duties, Indonesian manufacturers expect to resume A4 copy paper exports in four months – but not everybody is happy with the resolution of the widely watched dispute.

Page 13: The small business ombudsman has urged banks to support businesses well beyond the hibernation stage of the COVID-19 crisis, as lenders prepare to ‘‘check in’’ at the end of June with borrowers who requested a repayment holiday.

Page 15: Multi-year lows in both electricity and gas wholesale prices because of COVID-19 is adding to pressure on power retailers to pass on the cuts to small business customers, particularly as many struggle with a dramatic slump in their own activity.

Page 16: Westpac’s admission it broke anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws 23 million times may seem like the bank turned over a new leaf.

Page 17: As ‘‘tap-and-go’’ payments surge during COVID-19retailers are being slugged unnecessarily high fees because banks are still sending contactless payments down the more costly credit card networks rather than the cheaper Eftpos system.

Page 18: A key union is ramping up pressure on the federal government to inject itself into the buyout of Virgin Australia, as administrators whittle down bids for the failed airline.

Page 22: Foxtel will enter Australia’s hypercompetitive entertainment subscription video-on-demand market next Monday as it looks for a new engine of growth amid pressure on its traditional broadcast service.

 

 

The Australian

Page 1: Scott Morrison will urge a new industrial compact between workers, employers, unions and government to boost employment and forge a re-modelled economy after the pandemic, while signalling a new and more effective federation emerging from the crisis.

Australia has secured strong global backing for an independent inquiry into the coronavirus, with 62 nations coming together to co-sponsor a motion calling for the review at the World Health Assembly on Tuesday.

Page 2: The Labor premiers of Western Australia and Queensland are staring down calls from Gladys Berejiklian to reopen their borders as soon as possible, warning they will not put their citizens at risk while there is still community transmission in the most populous states.

Page 3: Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will relax the nation’s toughest remaining restrictions in two weeks by allowing restaurants, cafes and the dining area of pubs to reopen to limited trading.

Page 6: Trade Minister Simon Birmingham has demanded his Chinese counterpart return his call and engage in an open dialogue as tensions escalate, warning the Asian superpower’s recent “unpredictable regulatory interventions” has made it a riskier market for Australian businesses to invest in.

Page 8: The amount of alcohol a person can have in their car in the remote Kimberley will be strictly limited under a new law to deal with the menace of sly groggers, the opportunists who traffic alcohol into dry Aboriginal communities and sell cartons of beer for up to $200.

Page 13: Virgin Australia administrator Vaughan Strawbridge of Deloitte is under mounting pressure to cut the shortlist of bidders for the collapsed airline to only two as quickly as possible, as some parties that lodged first-round indicative offers on Friday could walk away from the process.

With borders closed for the foreseeable future, tourism is preparing to emerge from hibernation facing a $45.4bn international tourist-shaped hole and a drastically changed ecosystem.

 

 

The West Australian

Page 5: Children today are much more likely to hurt themselves at home than playing outside.

Page 8: Hundreds of jobs will be created in the East Pilbara as a result of a major critical minerals project getting extra support from the Federal Government.

Page 9: After a nearly seven-week COVID-19 enforced separation, Perth has been reunited with the south-west of WA.

Page 10: Council pools and libraries will slowly begin reopening today under revamped operating plans that include booking systems, strict caps on visitor numbers, quarantine periods for returned items and ramped-up cleaning regimes.

Page 15: Defence Minister Linda Reynolds has been slammed for failing to take a protected phone on her holiday to Bali last year, with intelligence experts pointing to the risks of discussing defence assets with the Prime Minister and Chief of the Defence Force on her personal phone.

Page 16: Australians who rely on websites such as Doctor Google for medical advice are putting their health at risk.

Business: JobKeeper needs to continue in some form beyond its September expiry date unless there is a dramatic improvement in the economy, according to a leading tax expert.

Non-profit groups in the US and other countries could close down operations entirely as a result of the coronavirus, even as billions of dollars are donated to pandemic-relief efforts.

Australia will need to overcome its “cultural risk aversion” to investing in emerging Asian economies if it is serious about diversifying its economic relationships, industry experts say.

Australia’s commercial construction activity will collapse as the impact of COVID-19 wipes out private demand for new building works, a national industry body said.

Pingrup farmer Trevor Badger — who was ousted from the board of Australia’s biggest cooperative last week — says he won’t nominate for another seat despite being confident of a landslide win.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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