Leon and Garry - Ted Baillieu's Business Wish List - Talking Business 2010 Ep 45c

A review of the week in business, with expert analysis and commentary

Leon and Garry talk about the business wish list for new Victorian premier Ted Baillieu. Meanwhile, the Australian economy hits a soft patch with growth slowing down, the current account deficit widening and a fall in retail sales. Still, the share market continues to perform strongly. Home prices have picked up as have building approvals. RBA Governor Glenn Stevens says Australians should save rather than spend and has called for a “stablisation fund” to save the income from the mining boom. Stevens also says big projects like the NBN should have a cost benefit analysis. The NBN has also been criticized by a London report saying its benefits are overstated, and by the ACCC. Meanwhile, the NBN legislation has gone through parliament. The RBA questions claims by the banks that their costs are climbing faster than the cash rate and Treasurer Wayne Swan prepares plans to have credit unions and building societies operating as a “fifth pillar” competing against the Big Four. Meanwhile, the NAB is still recovering from its computer glitch that stopped people getting paid. Australia now has fewer female company directors than last year. Rio Tinto announces it is expanding with a $15 billion plus iron ore spending program and the ACCC is going to toe to toe with Metcash over the company’s plans to acquire Franklins. Metcash comes out with a profit warning. New home sale have improved according to a new survey but company profits are down 1.5%. Hungry Jacks is in trouble with the Advertising Standards Board over junk food. Australia is to have more apples coming in from New Zealand after losing an appeal to the World Trade Organisation. Households have cut water use but their bills are up 95%. Nufarm negotiates a new debt facility but is fined by ASIC for non-disclosure of bad results. The ACCC is investigating the billionaires bidding for seats on the Ten Network board. Woodside suffers another billion dollar blowout, this time at its Pluto liquefied natural gas project in WA. The tax office cracks down on foreign private equity firms. Qantas wins the right to sue Rolls Royce in Australia.

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Garry Barker and Leon Gettler
Business, Economics, RMIT