Home Funding & Finance And now for that big interest rate announcement…

And now for that big interest rate announcement…


Talking Business is a podcast review of the Australian economy, presented by seasoned business journalists Leon Gettler and Garry Barker, produced in association with the RMIT College of Business. It features interviews with prominent business leaders and expert analysis from RMIT academics.

And now for that big interest rate announcement…

Garry and Leon look at the Reserve Bank’s decision to keep interest rates on hold – for now. But the big four banks will give the RBA until next month to raise rates, or they say they will go it alone.

  • The Department of Finance has urged Finance minister Penny Wong to make $2.4 billion of cuts to pay for the pledges it made during its negotiations with the Independents and to get the budget back into surplus.
  • The Housing Industry Association warns that housing starts will fall 4 per cent this year, a steep downturn in supply as the federal stimulus measures fade.
  • Manufacturing has contracted for the first time this year and Federal Treasury warns that retailers will be hit hard by continuing discounting.
  • The IMF says Australia is only half way through its commodity boom. Meanwhile, the biggest merger in Australian history looks like it’s dead with Rio pulling away from its deal with BHP Billiton to join forces in the Pilbara.
  • Supermarket group Coles has reignited the discounting war with Woolworths, Billabong buys more shops in Australia and Indian conglomerate, Adani Group, looks like it will be involved in the $2 billion privatization of the Port of Brisbane.
  • ConnectEast, owner of EastLink, has recovered from the financial crisis with 200,000 cars a day using the freeway.
  • China’s bid for Canada’s Potash Corp. is crumbling, opening the way for BHP Billiton’s $41 billion takeover of the company.
  • Consumer price inflation rose just 0.1 per cent in September and Suncorp chairman John Story is stepping down after seven years at the helm and taking the company through one of its most turbulent periods.
  • Fortescue Metals is exporting record levels of iron ore.
  • Women continue to be poorly represented on company boards, according to a new study by the Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace agency.
  • Canadians are now close to controlling Australia’s wheat market after the Foreign Investment Review Board approved the takeover bid for AWB by Canadian fertilizer company Agrium.
  • Fresh after completing its $60 million acquisition of AAPT’s consumer business, iiNet predicts more consolidation in the ISP market.
  • Foxtel launches a new service to undercut iTunes.
  • Activity in the services sector dipped for the fifth straight month and retail sales are slowing, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. But more jobs are being advertised, according to the ANZ’s Job Advertisements survey, signaling that unemployment could drop below five per cent.
  • Australia recorded its fifth straight trade surplus in August on the back of the commodities boom.
  • Sales of four wheel drives have lifted turnover of motor vehicle sales.
  • Rich list entrepreneurs David Goldberger and David Wieland have raised questions about ACCC chairman Graeme Samuel over his involvement in the struggling DFO shopping centre chain.
  • Gold hits another record and traders expect it to soon be trading above $1400.
  • Tasmanian homes and businesses will be automatically connected to the National Broadband Network under a new opt-out scheme.
  • Wesfarmers chairman Bob Every calls for a carbon tax ahead of a carbon trading scheme.

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Garry Barker and Leon Gettler both have established careers with The Age newspaper, where Garry Barker is its Technology Editor, and Leon Gettler is a Senior Business Journalist. Gettler also works freelance on a number of other publications.