Top Stories

  • Small businesses back budget AAP - 1 hour 19 minutes ago
    Small businesses back budget

    Treasurer Joe Hockey's second budget has gone over well with small businesses, with close to 60 per cent backing the government's $5.5 billion support package. The package was predictably most popular with businesses that will reap the benefits of the government's tax cuts and incentives, though larger businesses were less enthusiastic. Under the small business package, businesses with turnover of less than $2 million will be able to immediately write off the value of assets worth less than $20,000.

  • Aussie dollar's fall eases AAP - 2 hours 44 minutes ago

    The Australian dollar's slide on weaker than expected business investment figures has eased after the currency hit a six week low. It fell as low as 76.18 US cents in the early hours of Friday, its weakest level since April 15, due to Thursday's surprisingly soft business investment figures. The Australian dollar steadied during Friday's local session as traders wait for more key figures next week, including economic growth, National Australia Bank senior currency strategist Emma Lawson said.

  • $A falls' eases ahead of big data week AAP - 3 hours ago

    The Australian dollar's slide on weaker than expected business investment figures has eased ahead of more key economic readings. At 1700 AEST on Friday, the local currency was trading at 76.53 US cents, ...

  • Aust market up more than 1pc AAP - 3 hours ago

    The Australian share market has made its best single-day gain in a month as investors snapped up beaten-down stocks. CMC Markets chief market analyst Ric Spooner said the jump in the market was surprising given that there was no obvious driver or news when the session started. Mr Spooner said Friday's rally may have been driven by significant interest from overseas investors.

  • Aussie bonds rise on recession talk AAP - 3 hours ago

    Australian bond futures prices have firmed on fears the nation is heading into a recession. Investors are still reacting to Thursday's poor business investment figures, UBS interest rate strategist Matthew ...

  • Evolution raises $172m for Cowal mine AAP - 3 hours ago

    Evolution Mining is set to become Australia's second largest gold producer after successfully raising funds to buy a NSW gold mine. Evolution has raised $172 million from institutional investors to help fund the acquisition of Cowal mine, in central NSW, from the world's largest gold miner, Barrick Gold. Evolution is buying Cowal for $US550 million ($A702.74 million) in a deal that will significantly lift its gold production.

  • Stocks to watch on Friday AAP - 4 hours ago

    Stocks to watch on the Australian stock exchange at the close on Friday: CBA - COMMONWEALTH BANK - up $1.59, or 1.9 per cent, to $85.09 WBC - WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION - up 44 cents, or 1.33 per cent, ...

  • Aussie shares close higher AAP - 4 hours ago

    The Australian share market closed higher on Thursday, with positive manufacturing data out of the US overnight and China during the day promoting positive investor sentiment.

  • Oil Search says low prices to stay AAP - 4 hours ago

    Oil Search boss Peter Botten has warned oil prices are likely to stay low for the next five years, putting up to $5.5 trillion worth of projects around the world at risk. Mr Botten said the rise of US shale producers, combined with OPEC countries' determination to preserve their market share meant it would be difficult for oil prices to rise significantly above their current levels. "There are market forces that mean the oil price is not going to rise massively over the next five or so years," he said.

  • Virgin boss rubbishes open skies plan AAP - 4 hours ago
    Virgin boss rubbishes open skies plan

    Virgin Australia boss John Borghetti has rubbished a federal government plan to allow foreign airlines to fly domestic routes in the country's north, saying it simply wont work. The Abbott government is reportedly considering a so-called "open skies" plan to open routes in northern Australia to foreign carriers in order to increase competition, bring down prices and stimulate local economies.

  • Economists find little joy in latest data AAP - 5 hours ago

    A bleak quarterly survey of business investment plans has economists reviewing their forecasts. The results of the survey were seen as a key cross-check on the progress of the so-called rebalancing, or baton change, as mining investment fades and investment picks up in other sectors of the economy. Thursday's report "clearly clouds" the handover, Commonwealth Bank economist Diana Mousina said.

  • Home prices fell in May AAP - 6 hours ago

    Housing prices across Australia fell by a little less than one per cent in May, with the usual seasonal variation the likely reason. In the meantime the property market analytics firm says its weekly collection of capital city home prices points to a nationwide fall of 0.9 per cent in the month once the final figures are in. "Whether the change in the index's direction indicates the start of a softening trend across the housing market or is more reflective of seasonal volatility is yet to be seen, however it is clear that in trend terms the housing market remains strong, driven primarily by substantial capital gains across the Sydney market," he said.

  • Credit growth slows in April AAP - 6 hours ago

    Credit growth slowed in April, but loans to residential property investors, which is most worrying the Reserve Bank, are still growing strongly. Annual credit growth was 6.1 per cent, the fourth month in a row the annual pace narrowly beat six per cent. Two years ago the annual growth rate was just 3.1 per cent, and one year ago it was 4.6 per cent.

  • Murray Goulburn sets price range for trust AAP - 6 hours ago

    Australia's largest dairy group, Murray Goulburn Co-operative, has released the indicative price range for units in a new trust that will allow non-dairy-farmers to invest in the group. The MG Unit Trust will be listed on the Australian Securities Exchange through an initial offer of units to the public. Murray Goulburn said on Friday that the indicative price range under the initial public offer had been set at $2.10 to $3.20 per unit.

  • RBA rate cut unlikely, experts say AAP - 6 hours ago
    RBA rate cut unlikely, experts say

    The Reserve Bank is unlikely to cut rates further next week as it balances the need to boost economic growth while keeping Sydney and Melbourne house prices under control. Market pricing for a June rate cut has remained at just four per cent this week, despite Thursday's downbeat capex data which showed business investment slumped in the March quarter, and will likely fall further in the coming financial year. Nine out of 12 economists surveyed by AAP expect the cash rate to remain steady on Tuesday, but 10 of them tip a move by the end of the year.

  • Qld indigenous group takes miners to court AAP - 7 hours ago
    Qld indigenous group takes miners to court

    An indigenous group is prepared to take its fight to the High Court to stop an Indian coal giant from building a $16.5 billion mine on its traditional land. Adani's Carmichael mine, expected to export at least 50 million tonnes of coal each year, is slated for Queensland's Galilee Basin. There were tense scenes on Friday when the group arrived at Adani's Brisbane offices to present a notice of listing.

  • Bargain hunters drive strong market gains AAP - 7 hours ago

    The prospect of further interest rate cuts, plus plenty of bargain hunting by savvy investors, is fuelling the strongest session on the share market in more than a month. Despite weak overseas leads, the market is more than one per cent higher, as investors buy into all sectors, Phillip Capital senior client adviser Michael Heffernan said. The big four banks were among the better performers, with Commonwealth Bank up $1.80 at $85.30, ANZ up 54 cents at $33.26, National Australia Bank up 61 cents at $34.05 and Westpac 73 cents higher at $33.85.

  • New home sales up 0.6% in April AAP - 7 hours ago
    New home sales up 0.6% in April

    New home sales have risen, with most of the rise coming from multi-unit dwellings. New home sales grew 0.6 per cent in April, seasonally adjusted, the Housing Industry Association new home sales report ...

  • $A weaker at noon on $US strength AAP - 8 hours ago

    The Australian dollar has regained some ground after slipping in early trade in response to a stronger greenback and disappointing local business investment data. The local currency was worth 76.64 US ...

  • The week in numbers to May 29 AAP - 8 hours ago

    The big and small numbers that grabbed attention - or should have - in the business world over the past week. Monday: 20 pct - Shares in aspiring nickel miner Sirius Resources surged after it received ...

  • Most homeowners missing out on low rates AAP - 8 hours ago

    Most homeowners are missing out on the full benefits of record low interest rates by failing to refinance their mortgage, financial services veteran Mark Bouris says. A survey of 1,000 Australians who took out a home loan more than two years ago shows almost half have never changed the terms of their mortgage. A further 25 per cent had not refinanced since interest rates began to fall almost four years ago, according to Mr Bouris' financial services firm Yellow Brick Road.

  • Defence sector not all bad: report AAP - 9 hours ago

    Up to 2500 jobs could be lost in South Australia's defence sector, but the so called "valley of death" isn't cause for despair, an economic report says. The Bank SA Trends bulletin says South Australia remains well placed to benefit from the construction of Australia's next fleet of submarines, even if they are sourced overseas. "It is likely that two-thirds of all the costs associated with outfitting and maintaining the submarines must ultimately occur in Australia, with a substantial share of that right here in this state," the report says.

  • Banks lead Aust market higher AAP - 9 hours ago

    The Australian share market has opened surprisingly stronger as investors in the domestic bourse play "catch up" with overseas markets. IG chief market strategist Chris Weston said he had expected a flat open for the market given the soft leads from markets overseas. "Our market has underperformed global markets for the last few weeks.

  • Not all bad news for SA defence sector AAP - 9 hours ago

    Up to 2500 jobs could be lost in South Australia's defence sector, but the so called "valley of death" is not cause for despair, a new economic report says. The Bank SA Trends bulletin says South Australia remains well placed to benefit from the construction of Australia's next fleet of submarines, even if they are sourced overseas. "It is likely that two-thirds of all the costs associated with outfitting and maintaining the submarines must ultimately occur in Australia, with a substantial share of that right here in this state," the report says.

  • Aust shares open higher AAP - 9 hours ago
    Aust shares open higher

    The Australian share market has opened significantly higher, despite a weak lead from Wall Street overnight. At 1015 AEST on Friday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 52.1 points, or 0.91 per cent, ...