Michael West

Michael West

Michael West comments on companies, markets and the economy. He is a former SMH business editor.

Screen Australia board meetings must be a game of musical chairs

Michael West Reel deals: Screen Australia's financial statements list five pages of related party transactions, making its board meetings an interesting proposition.

Labor's corporate tax avoidance policy is mostly window dressing

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Michael West It's more about PR than it is about policy.

LNG lobby has well-oiled spruiking machine

The seven-month oil rout threatens to erode the returns of local LNG producers, whose contracts with Asian buyers are linked to crude.

Michael West The Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association is yet to resile from its scaremongering strategy that there is a shortage of gas in Victoria and NSW and no choice but to ramp up...

Profit-shifting: Tax office settles for patting the elephant in the room


Michael West The very funding of our hospitals and schools is at stake here, our children’s future.


Watching the watchdog: Secondments spell trouble at ASIC

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Michael West When players from the industries ASIC is supervising are routinely seconded into its ranks, the public has a right to know.

Watchdogs are no longer tough cops on the beat on white collar crime

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Michael West When it comes to corporate regulation in this country there are one set of rules for the top end of town and another for the rest. The rest, put simply, are expected to obey the law.

A conspiracy to stiff gas consumers

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Michael West Coal prices have crashed, the carbon tax has gone, yet the cost of electricity continues to rise. Oil prices have halved, yet the price of gas, which is linked to oil, is going up 17 per cent.


News loans to Foxtel questioned

Lending and borrowing are helping the Foxtel Partners reduce their tax in Australia.

Michael West Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation and Telstra Corporation are lending money to their cashed-up pay TV business Foxtel at 12 per cent, claiming tax deductions on the loan and lending the money...

Michael West

Tax haven explosion puts hole in corporate tax

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Michael West Confidential documents obtained from the Tax Office under the Freedom of Information Act show Australia’s corporate tax base is in crisis because of the explosion in tax haven dealings by...


Tax avoidance as bad as bottom of the harbour schemes

tax and figures

Michael West John Miller says the infamous "bottom of the harbour" tax schemes of the 1970s and 80s are "no more scandalous" than some of the aggressive tax minimisation strategies used by multinational companies...


Google paying a fraction of the tax in Australia it should

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Michael West How much tax does Google really owe Australia? Its submission to the parliamentary inquiry into corporate tax avoidance says Google doesn't owe this country a zac.

Usual path

Australian filmmakers find success with the digital-only release of The Mule

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Michael West For an independent Aussie film about a football player holed up in a hotel room trying not to go to the toilet for a week, The Mule has done remarkably well.

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Inquiry's roll call of tax avoiders

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Michael West The list of submissions to the parliamentary inquiry into corporate tax avoidance reads like a Who's Who of Australia's biggest and sneakiest tax avoiders.

EFIC's capital deployed doing deals with multinationals

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Michael West The public mandate of the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation is to provide credit to small to medium enterprises, to assist them to export.

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Matt O'Sullivan book tallies cost of Qantas brinkmanship


Michael West Matt O'Sullivan gives a dramatic account of the most radical decision in Australian industrial relations history.

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A taxing tale of two peak bodies

New Social Services Minister Scott Morrison has taken the axe to community grants.

Michael West Four days out from Christmas, Blind Citizens Australia, Deaf Australia, Homelessness Australia and Down Syndrome Australia learned they were to be subject to federal government funding cuts.


Pressures on coal show no signs of ending

Coal miners may return to profitability.

Michael West When world leaders assembled at the G20 Summit in Brisbane last month, the corporation selected by the Australian government to address the G20 and spearhead its "thought...


Australians now live in 'energy poverty'

The Baird government plans to spend proceeds from the sale of electricity assets to fund infrastructure projects.

Michael West Hundreds of thousands of Australians now live in energy poverty. According to the Australian Energy Regulator, in NSW alone over 100,000 residential customers can't pay their bills and have an...

Michael West

Glencore buying Rio Tinto could burn hole in Hockey's pocket

Glencore owns 13 coal mines in NSW and Queensland.

Michael West A Glencore merger with Rio Tinto would be damaging for Australia and ought to be, and very likely will be, knocked on the head by the Foreign Investment Review Board.

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Policy of inaction on multinational tax

Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey.

Michael West Joe Hockey can say what he likes. The outlook for any substantial action on multinational tax shifting is bleak.