Business News

6 things you need to know today

  1. Tightening money markets may force the big four banks into hiking mortgage rates separate from any Reserve Bank of Australia movements in monetary policy.  Key benchmark rates at which banks lend to each other have spiked sharply by as much as 41 basis points over the past three months.  Five lenders, including Bank of Queensland, AMP Bank and ME Bank, have already responded to the crunch by hiking mortgage rates by up to 40 basis points to avoid eroding their profits.
  2. Consulting firm McKinsey & Co has been assisting Telstra with the company's recent shake-up, including helping identify where the telco can cut nearly a quarter of its workforce. McKinsey has been working with Telstra management for some time, focussing on the telco's labour costs, as well as benchmarking its performance.  Telstra is also using McKinsey's "Organisational Health Index" as one of the tools to help improve the culture of the telco and its work practices. The index will be used to benchmark and measure change in how easy it is for employees to carry out their work.
  3. Forty-five people were yesterday issued with a summons ordering them to appear in the Federal Court for what is expected to be one of the biggest public examinations held by a liquidator in Australian history.  Accountancy firm Pitcher Partners is investigating the activities of self-described "wealth creator", bankrupt and banned accountant Philip Whiteman (first exposed by the ABC in 2016), who is accused of helping predominantly small and medium businesses cheat the tax office and other creditors of at least tens of millions of dollars.
  4. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is pressuring the Federal Government for a $4 million funding lift so that it can provide the Reserve Bank with monthly, rather than quarterly, inflation data. The Reserve Bank has been pushing for a move to monthly data for more than eight years. The ABS on Wednesday released a discussion paper stating its case.
  5. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission yesterday announced that it has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against AMP Financial Planning (AMPFP) in relation to alleged failure by AMPFP to ensure its authorised financial planners comply with the best interests duty and related obligations under the Corporations Act. “ASIC alleges that certain AMPFP financial planners engaged in ‘rewriting conduct’ – which is providing advice that results in the cancellation of the client’s existing life, TPD, trauma and/or income protection insurance policies and the taking out of similar replacement policies by way of a new application rather than by way of a transfer,” ASIC said in a statement.
  6. Overnight the Dow Jones fell 0.7% to 24,118, the S&P 500 lost 0.9% to close at 2,700, and the Nasdaq closed down 1.5% at 7,445. In Europe the FTSE was up 1.1% at 7,622, the German DAX rose 0.9% to 12,349, and the Euro Stoxx 50 finished up 0.9% at 3,397.

Published on: Thursday, June 28, 2018

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