Today's Business Headlines

03/09/2008 - 06:37

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Two more rate cuts tipped by year's end; Libs say WA lost gas deal; Short shrift from Fortescue; Labor reveals polling 'shock' as major parties vie to be underdog; Chinese move on uranium

Today's Business Headlines

Two more rate cuts tipped by year's end
Homebuyers are set to get further interest rate relief with financial markets predicting the Reserve Bank will follow yesterday's quarter percentage point fall in official rates with as many as two or more cuts by the end of the year. The West

Libs say WA lost gas deal
A Liberal senator has accused the West Australian government of covering up the possible loss of a massive gas project to Darwin, as Premier Alan Carpenter was attacked for threatening the future of the mining industry with the state's protracted approvals process. The Fin Review

Short shrift from Fortescue
Andrew Forrest's Fortescue Metals Group has moved to arrest the slump in its share price by asking its biggest shareholder, high-profile New York hedge fund Harbinger Capital Partners, to stop its shares being lent to short sellers. The Fin Review

Labor reveals polling 'shock' as major parties vie to be underdog
With just four days to go before the state election, both sides tried desperately to claim underdog status yesterday, taking the unprecedented step of releasing its own polling and the Liberals accusing the government of engaging in stunts to avoid going into the final days as favourites. The West

Chinese move on uranium
The Chinese have moved to buy into Australia's booming uranium industry, posing a further challenge to foreign investment controls, with steelmaker Sinosteel applying yesterday to develop a $160 million mine in the South Australian outback. The Australian

 

THE WEST AUSTRALIAN:

Page 1: Homebuyers are set to get further interest rate relief with financial markets predicting the Reserve Bank will follow yesterday's quarter percentage point fall in official rates with as many as two or more cuts by the end of the year.

With just four days to go before the state election, both sides tried desperately to claim underdog status yesterday, taking the unprecedented step of releasing its own polling and the Liberals accusing the government of engaging in stunts to avoid going into the final days as favourites.

Page 4: Treasurer Wayne Swan has offered tax breaks on expensive but highly fuel-efficient cars, the Greens have claimed, in the first possible series of policy compromises the Rudd government will be required to make with crossbench senators to get a raft of controversial Budget measures through federal Parliament.

Business: Billionaire New York investor Phil Falcone has inadvertently triggered a wave of short selling in Fortescue Metals Group after the custodian looking after some of his 15.6 per cent stake in the $22.3 billion iron ore miner lent the stock to other hedge funds.

The Perth law firm heading a $150 million group action against failed stockbroker Opes Prime and its financier, ANZ, says it is undaunted by the bank's move to have a rival east coast-based class action thrown out of court.

Cape Lambert Iron Ore says it could be ready to turn its $US200 million ($235 million) Sierra Leone iron ore project into a mine within 18 months if resource drilling and feasibility studies prove successful.

Golden West Resources will have to wait up to two weeks before it knows the outcome of last week's extraordinary shareholders meeting after the Federal Court of WA delayed ruling on a decision to declare most of Portman's proxy votes invalid.

Grains trader AWB is understood to have succeeded in galvanising its farmer shareholders to vote at today's meeting on dismantling the company's dual shareholding structure - but it's not clear yet whether they support the concept.

Carnegie Corporation has moved a step closer to its Albany wave energy farm ambitions after a preliminary environmental review said it appeared unlikely to be scuttled on environmental grounds.

 

THE AUSTRALIAN:

Page 1: Home owners will receive mortgage relief for the first time in seven years.

The Chinese have moved to buy into Australia's booming uranium industry, posing a further challenge to foreign investment controls, with steelmaker Sinosteel applying yesterday to develop a $160 million mine in the South Australian outback.

Page 2: Hostilities between the building industry watchdog and unions are set to reignite, with a unionist due to face court on charges of assaulting and threatening to kill two construction commission inspectors.

Fairfax Media will come under pressure to reinstate high-profile columnist Mike Carlton, as the nation's workplace investigator queries his abrupt sacking during a strike by journalists last week.

Page 3: Five months before the Beaconsfield mine disaster, a geologist has warned that nearby areas could not be made safe and could be abandoned.

Finance: The Reserve Bank's first interest rate cut in seven years could prompt Australia's corporate sector to gear up conservative balance sheets.

Business: Struggling childcare group ABC Learning is planning to slash its part-time workforce by 1,000 or more in an effort to save up to $26 million each year and stem losses that threaten the company's future.

 

THE FINANCIAL REVIEW:

Page 1: The major banks raced each other to match the Reserve Bank of Australia's first official interest rate cut.

Andrew Forrest's Fortescue Metals Group has moved to arrest the slump in its share price by asking its biggest shareholder, high-profile New York hedge fund Harbinger Capital Partners, to stop its shares being lent to short sellers.

Page 3: Rebel Labor politicians appear to have abandoned hope that the government will fast-track its plans to abolish the Australian Building and Construction Commission.

Page 7: A Liberal senator has accused the West Australian government of covering up the possible loss of a massive gas project to Darwin, as Premier Alan Carpenter was attacked for threatening the future of the mining industry with the state's protracted approvals process.

Finance: Hopes the Reserve Bank will deliver back to back rate cuts took a blow yesterday.

 

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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