19/03/2014 - 05:04

Morning Headlines

19/03/2014 - 05:04

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Morning Headlines

Forrest digs in over Minderoo

Mining billionaire Andrew Forrest has deferred negotiations over mineral exploration access arrangements to his Pilbara cattle station as part of an apparent bid to quarantine the land from bona fide miners. The Fin

DJs gets serious on merger

David Jones has moved a step closer to formally engaging with Myer in a merger deal, reappointing Port Jackson Partners as an adviser to assess the value of a possible tie-up ahead of today’s half-year profit announcement. The Aus

Bids invited for Rottnest revamp

Rottnest Island authorities want the private sector to revitalise the island’s 80-year-old army barracks, with the potential for new accommodation, function centres and a restaurant within the heritage-listed site. The West

Loophole debate stalls NBN deal

The protracted debate over whether to close a legal loophole allowing competition to the national broadband network is causing uncertainty over the renegotiation of the $11.2 billion deal between NBN Co and Telstra. The Fin

Tangiers’ Jacka bid thwarted

Tangiers Petroleum’s ill-fated takeover bid for fellow junior Jacka Resources has run out of steam, ending a chapter of shareholder power trumping management ambitions. The West

Abbott stands up to colleagues, critics on free speech

Tony Abbott has resisted Coalition rebels and defied criticism from ethnic communities over looming changes to racial discrimination laws by insisting the reforms will ‘‘reconcile’’ support for freedom of speech and the rejection of racism. The Aus

‘Patent box’ tax breaks needed here

Australia risks companies moving offshore if it doesn’t duplicate tax incentives for commercialising research introduced overseas, says the Group of 100, representing CFOs at the top 100 sharemarket-listed companies. The Fin

Sinodinos weighs stepping aside

Assistant Treasurer Arthur Sinodinos is weighing up whether to stand aside from the Abbott ministry over corruption allegations in NSW in a bid to avoid derailing the government’s economic message ahead of the May budget and clouding its signature deregulation reforms. The Aus

 

 

The Australian Financial Review

Page 1: National Australia Bank chairman Michael Chaney said a rule allowing 100 shareholders to call company meetings has been “open to abuse” by pressure groups who are not genuine shareholders and most investors had to “bear the ultimate cost of a fringe obsession”.

Page 3: Australia risks companies moving offshore if it doesn’t duplicate tax incentives for commercialising research introduced overseas, says the Group of 100, representing CFOs at the top 100 sharemarket-listed companies.

Page 5: Tony Abbott is facing rising internal tension over his government’s plans to repeal section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, a move motivated by the successful prosecution of right-wing columnist Andrew Bolt.

Page 6: The government’s “war on red tape” will make it easier for business people to travel frequently throughout the region by removing hurdles to being granted an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum Business Travel Card.

Companies will be able to keep their identities secret when reporting how many women they employ to the government under changes made as part of the Coalition’s blitz on regulation, women’s groups claim.

Page 7: Former federal MP Craig Thomson’s arrogant, repeated offending as a union official had damaged the entire labour movement and should result in a jail sentence, prosecutors told a Melbourne court on Tuesday.

Page 8: The Reserve Bank of Australia has put the flood of gloomy headlines over high-profile job cuts into perspective, pointing out that as many as 900,000 people move in or out of the workforce every month.

The Abbott government is due to introduce controversial amendments to Labor’s financial advice laws on Wednesday, amid conflicting claims about the impact on consumers and predictions of administrative chaos.

Page 10: Mining billionaire Andrew Forrest has deferred negotiations over mineral exploration access arrangements to his Pilbara cattle station as part of an apparent bid to quarantine the land from bona fide miners.

The protracted debate over whether to close a legal loophole allowing competition to the national broadband network is causing uncertainty over the renegotiation of the $11.2 billion deal between NBN Co and Telstra.

Page 11: Companies that reveal to the public how much tax they pay benefit from greater influence over tax policy, according to one of Australia’s top corporate tax experts.

Barely a week after taking the reins from Peter Mason, new David Jones chairman Gordon Cairns has moved quickly to respond to calls from shareholders to review Myer’s $3.2 billion merger proposal.

Crop protection group Nufarm plans to cut 105 jobs as part of a $13 million annual cost-saving bid that will see the closure of its Lytton and Welshpool manufacturing plants and several regional services centres over the next two years.

Elders chairman and stand-in chief executive Mark Allison said the pastoral group is down to a shortlist of four in the search for a new chief executive and expects to make an announcement by the end of this month.

 

 

The Australian

Page 1: Assistant Treasurer Arthur Sinodinos is weighing up whether to stand aside from the Abbott ministry over corruption allegations in NSW in a bid to avoid derailing the government’s economic message ahead of the May budget and clouding its signature deregulation reforms.

Tony Abbott has resisted Coalition rebels and defied criticism from ethnic communities over looming changes to racial discrimination laws by insisting the reforms will ‘‘reconcile’’ support for freedom of speech and the rejection of racism.

Page 2: Tony Abbott will promise to cut business and charities’ compliance costs by more than $700 million as part of the government’s red-tape repeal push, announcing the scrapping of more than 10,000 pieces of legislation and regulations across 50,000 pages.

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce has lashed out at the union movement for using fears over airline safety to campaign against controversial changes to the company’s ownership rules.

Labor has seized on a $5.7 billion change to the budget to accuse Joe Hockey of inflating the deficit to score political points, sparking a fight over whether voters can trust the Treasurer’s warnings.

Page 5: Consumers could foot the bill for ‘‘undisciplined and excessive’’ spending on the National Broadband Network, the nation’s second-biggest telco has warned.

Page 17: David Jones has moved a step closer to formally engaging with Myer in a merger deal, reappointing Port Jackson Partners as an adviser to assess the value of a possible tie-up ahead of today’s half-year profit announcement.

The indigenous-owned Ayers Rock Resort in the shadow of Uluru has just shouldered a $100 million-plus writedown, but Emirates, operator of tourist property Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa near Sydney, says there is a big future for resorts.

Iluka’s recent decision to pump $22.5 million into privately held British metal technology company Metalysis raised eyebrows when it was unveiled by Iluka managing director David Robb, as sluggish mineral sands prices pressure profits in the face of weak demand.

Rio Tinto’s decision to walk away from divestment plans for its diamond assets could have been triggered by a cut to reserves at its Argyle mine in Western Australia.

New figures reveal the severity of the hangover from the “cooks and hairdressers” period when international students overwhelmed Australia’s skilled migration program.

 

 

The West Australian

Page 5: Rottnest Island authorities want the private sector to revitalise the island’s 80-year-old army barracks, with the potential for new accommodation, function centres and a restaurant within the heritage-listed site.

Page 11: Barnaby Joyce says conservative West Australians should consider the Nationals a safe haven if they feel they cannot vote for the Liberal Party at the Senate repeat election.

Page 12: Perth has become the centre of the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 with authorities scouring a huge area off WA for any sign of the Boeing 777.

Page 16: It might seem a curious thing to write given the depths of the Barnett Government’s struggles since its re-election 12 months ago, but doubts linger about the Mark McGowan-led Opposition’s ability to take its political chances.

A third of employers check social media profiles when recruiting new graduates, according to a report on the graduate labour market.

Page 21: Fisheries Minister Ken Baston has tipped a bucket on a review of the Fisheries Department commissioned by his predecessor Troy Buswell, describing it as flawed and ill-informed.

Business: Live cattle exporters cannot load ships fast enough to meet skyrocketing demand from Indonesia and have requested priority access to the biggest port in northern Australia.

Tangiers Petroleum’s ill-fated takeover bid for fellow junior Jacka Resources has run out of steam, ending a chapter of shareholder power trumping management ambitions.

Clive Palmer’s Mineralogy has flagged another abrupt change of legal strategy in its ongoing brawl with CITIC Pacific.

The mining slowdown has claimed another casualty with water services group GFR going under yesterday, less than two years after handing down a record profit.

A Toorak accountant carried out new tax frauds in 2005 while tied up in WA after being convicted over a tax avoidance scheme, a District Court jury was told yesterday.

Kerry Stokes-backed Iron Ore Holdings has cleared another hurdle at its Buckland iron ore project, south of Cape Preston.

 

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