The Economy



Will the TPP really benefit Australia?

1:45 AM   Is the TPP just political theatre, or will Australia really gain from it? Donald Robertson and Leon Berkelmans put the case for and against.

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Malcolm Maiden

Even money on Trans-Pacific Partnership win on current form

Malcolm Maiden.

Malcolm Maiden 1:44 AM   The TPP is a political construct more than an economic one.

TPP: what's in it for me?

An assembly line worker at the New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. NUMMI  auto plant in Fremont, California, builds a Toyota Tacoma truck.

Marc Moncrief 1:41 AM   Consumers unlikely to see lower prices soon, if ever, analysts say.

Unions fear TPP will hurt workers

ACTU President Ged Kearney believes the next election will be called before the 2016 budget.

Anna Patty 1:38 AM   The deal has been signed in secret without explanation says the ACTU.

US won't have open slather to sue

Rally against the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in Martin Place in August.

Sarah Danckert 1:36 AM   Top Australian lawyers have said provisions in the Trans-Pacific Partnership to shore up protections for investors will not mean companies from the US have open slather to sue the Australian government. 

TPP largely positive for agriculture

Ian Blight, a Griffith rice farmer, says Japan is a key market for growers because of the premium paid.

Jared Lynch 10:41 PM   Whether they grow beef, grain, sugarcane or supply milk for speciality cheeses, Australian farmers have generally welcomed the ambitious trade pact.

San Miguel ready to spend Telstra's cash

San Miguel president Ramon Ang says Telstra is so big its investment in the Philippines will mean "nothing" to the Australian company.

David Ramli 7:27 PM   San Miguel, the Philippine beer and food giant set to launch a mobile carrier with Telstra, has told its investors the Australian telecoms giant has plenty of cash and that any investment made "is nothing to them".

Tax plan puts companies in firing line

Treasurer Scott Morrison says Australia will be careful not to make tax changes that impact on its global competitveness

Nassim Khadem 6:01 PM   The OECD-G20 plan to stop multinational tax avoidance could put companies in the middle of border disputes between revenue authorities, tax experts have warned.

An economic analysis of the TPP? Don't hold your breath

International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde says she can't produce a comprehensive analysis of the TPP until she's seen the details.

Gareth Hutchens 5:46 PM   The Turnbull government says the Trans-Pacific Partnership will boost growth, create jobs, raise living standards, and increase productivity for Australians. We'll have to take its word for it.

RBA holds interest rates at 2%

It is the fifth month in a row the RBA has left the cash rate on hold.

Stephen Cauchi 5:19 PM   The Reserve Bank of Australia has kept the official interest rate on hold at its record low level of 2 per cent.

TPP greenlights cheaper global roaming

One of the provisions could also slash the often exorbitant fees that mobile providers charge for Australians using their phones abroad.

David Ramli 4:49 PM   Australians could enjoy much cheaper calls when travelling overseas thanks to global roaming provisions in the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement.

TPP: What it means for Australian business

Generic milk on a production line

David Ramli, Jared Lynch 3:29 PM   Australian business delivers its verdict on the largest free-trade agreement in history.

Chinese arrivals boost Australia's tourist industry

The number of Chinese tourists visiting Australia rose by 16 per cent in August.

Jamie Freed 2:35 PM   A strong rise in the number of tourists from China, Hong Kong and India contributed to 6.5 per cent growth in international arrivals to Australia in the month of August.

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Trade balance deficit widens to $3.1b

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Stephen Cauchi 1:32 PM   Australia's trade balance has stayed in the red with a deficit of $3.1 billion in August, following a revised deficit in July of $2.8 billion.

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TPP: What you need to know

The agreements cover everything from the sale of steaks to niche intellectual property used by science and technology-based companies.

Rose Powell 1:01 PM   What's the Trans-Pacific Partnership and what does it mean for Australia?

International tax plan praised with faint damns

Former Treasurer Joe Hockey with OECD secretary-general Angel Gurria at the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting in Cairns in 2014 when the OECD plan to stop multinational tax evasion was discussed.

Nassim Khadem 12:40 PM   After two years, the OECD has developed its final plan aimed at stopping multinational tax evasion. But not everyone is happy.

TPP 'failed to reach potential'

Entrenched protectionism from the US dairy industry hindered the potential for global dairy players under the TPP, says Fonterra chairman John Willson.

Jared Lynch 10:14 AM   The world's biggest dairy exporter, Fonterra, says the Trans Pacific Partnership fails to reach its potential, blaming "protectionism" from the US.

Pacific countries agree to historic TPP trade pact

Deserves credit ... Trade Minister Andrew Robb.

Nick O'Malley 6:39 AM   Pacific trade ministers reach a deal on the most sweeping trade liberalisation pact in a generation.

Hockey tax laws will be 'superseded' by OECD plan

All eyes are on OECD head of tax Pascal-Saint Amans, as he hands down the final plan to stop multinational profit shifting.

Nassim Khadem   The global plan to fight profit shifting is likely to "supersede" domestic laws introduced by Joe Hockey to counter multinational tax evasion.

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More job ads in September

job search

Job advertisements posted a second month of healthy gains in September

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Drugs breakthrough brings TPP deal nearer

A 'two-track' deal on pharmaceuticals could pave the way for a broader Pacific trade agreement.

Breakthrough over new biotech drug monopoly periods could clear way for trade pact.

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How penalty rates protect the weekend

Clancy Yeates.

Clancy Yeates   Cutting Sunday rates is a slippery slope that will further erode the weekend.

What the terrible jobs report means

<i>Illustration: Frank Maiorana</i>

Neil Irwin   Friday's US job numbers were poor on pretty much every level - and there was no silver lining.

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Wall St tumbles on weak jobs data


Tanya Agrawal   US stocks fell sharply at the open after weak jobs data raised doubts the economy is strong enough to allow the Fed to raise interest rates this year.

US jobs growth stumbles

US factories are feeling the global chill and shed 9000 jobs in September after losing 18,000 in August.

Jason Lange   US employers slammed the brakes on hiring over the last two months and wages fell, raising new doubts about the strength of the economy.

Retail sales rise 0.4pc in August

Consumer retail spending rebounded a little in August after falling in July.

Stephen Cauchi   Australian retail sales crept ahead in August after a fall in July.

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SMSFs dispute cost of super tax breaks

SMSF Association chief executive Andrea Slattery wants the government to keep its hands off super tax concessions until proper costings are available.

Sally Rose   Advocates for self-managed superannuation funds have urged the government to resist pressure to tackle tax breaks for the rich.

Obama administration moves against Big Tobacco

Trade minister Andrew Robb says he has been pushing for the TPP to include ISDS "safeguards" – such as a carve-out for tobacco companies.

Gareth Hutchens   The United States has added a surprising last-minute twist in negotiations on the mega-trade deal.

Time to borrow, says the IMF

Matt Wade dinkus Dinkus

Matt Wade   IMF prescribes more public spending as the Australian economy sputters in the wake of the mining boom

Has globalisation peaked?

Global trade is slowing as exports of major economies fall, suggesting to some globalisation may have peaked.

Simon Kennedy   The world's biggest economies are finding it increasingly hard to trade their way out of trouble.

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