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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.

The election, the economy, the week in business

In this podcast Leon and Garry talk about the election:

  • With the polls suggesting a Labor victory and the Greens holding the balance of power, and the budget in deficit, any big spending promises will be held over until 2012-13.
  • Whoever wins, will inherit an economy growing at an unsustainable rate, according to the latest Westpac-Melbourne Institute study.
  • Business leaders are saying the Coalition and government cannot walk away from industrial relations reform. Australian borrowers may face an interest rate hike during the election campaign.
  • Meanwhile, the relentless discounting by retailers has taken its toll with Country Road reporting lower earnings and Woolworths saying sales are flat.
  • Telstra to fire 30 senior executives and 300 middle managers as it prepares for the National Broadband Network and its move to becoming a service company.
  • Ten will pull out of the Free TV revenue share figures, saying they are not accurate. The housing recovery is stalling with the volume of residential land sales falling 40%.
  • Consumers decline for the fourth consecutive month in June, the worst result in two years. There will be a skills shortage of 35,800 tradespeople hitting the resources sector by 2015, according to a government report.
  • A slowing Chinese economy has led to forecasts of iron ore prices being slashed by 20%. The sharemarket to face its sternest test over the next six weeks with banks and the resources sector holding up the rest of the market.
  • Private hospital operator Healthscope agrees to a $2.7 billion takeover offer by two private equity firms, signaling that health is a growth sector for the economy.
  • John B Fairfax to retire from the Fairfax Media board leading to speculation of a change in the balance of power in the board room. NAB gets another six weeks to fine tune its offer for AXA Asia Pacific.
  • Australia’s merchandise imports are flat at $18.41 billion in June. Foster’s soon to be demerged wine business renamed Treasury Wine Estates. NAB is getting more customer satisfaction after undercutting rivals on fees and charges.
  • The BP oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico is expected to BHP Billiton’s petroleum production growth this financial year.
  • The ACCC approves sale of Mobil Australia’s 295 petrol stations to 7/11.

Press play to listen.


Talking Business Podcasts on iTunes

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.