Friday, November 25, 2011

RBA chief says Eurozone crisis risks "unacceptable damage" to the world

Australia's Reserve Bank governor Glenn Stevens has urged European leaders to sort out the region's debt problems quickly, saying the threat to Australia and the rest of the world is rising.

Speaking at a conference in Sydney last night, Mr Stevens said he could not put a figure on the probability of severe damage to Australia from Europe's financial woes.

But he said time was running out for the problems to be fixed.

"I think we are fast coming to the point where all the parties who have a role to play in getting to the solution there really have to hurry up and do it," he said.

"Otherwise the probability of damage to not just us but everyone, will be unacceptably high."

Here's my analysis from this morning's edition of "AM".

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Germany thrust into debt crisis focus after "disastrous" bond auction raises fear factor

There are disturbing signs this morning that Germany is being dragged into the Europe's worsening debt crisis.
The economic powerhouse has failed to convince some global investors that unlike other parts of the Eurozone, German government debt is a safe enough bet.
Today's auction of ten year German bonds left risk takers cold and since has been described as "disastrous" after 35 percent was left unsold.
The fear factor relating to all things European means that even quality German debt now has a guilt by association with struggling economies like Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, Spain - the much feared PIIGS.
Not surprisingly, Investors are acting first and asking questions later. Right now, it's looking like much later.
And one big albeit distance question is whether the PIIGS acronym might soon be joined by another "g".
Here's my take from this morning's edition of "AM".

Read my piece on The Drum and debate Europe continues to provoke.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Gunns insider case a test for corporate cop

By Business editor Peter Ryan - analysis

Former Gunns chairman John Gay is due to face court in Launceston next month on charges of insider trading.

The allegations - if proven - would be an important victory for the corporate regulator as watchdogs around the world crack down on white-collar crime.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is alleging that Mr Gay, while chairman of Gunns, used insider information to profit from a personal share transaction - information that he knew was not available to the general public.

But insider trading cases are notoriously difficult to proven and Mr Gay is certain to mount a vigorous defence.

Here's my analysis broadcast on "The World Today" and read it on ABC News Online.

Qantas dispute goes to industrial umpire, but Alan Joyce denies "mission accomplished".

The industrial umpire will impose a final solution in the dispute between Qantas and three key unions after negotiations broke down well ahead of the deadline for a peace deal.

The impasse has been referred to Fair Work Australia but an outcome could be months away, perhaps well into the new year.

But despite a narrowing of the issues, deep divisions and bitterness remains.

The Transport Workers Union, which represents baggage handlers, has accused Qantas of wrecking the negotiations in order to force the dispute to binding arbitration.

But Qantas denies it stonewalled negotiations to get the result it wanted all along.

Listen to both sides - Mick Pieri from the TWU and Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce.

Here's the extended version of my interview with Alan Joyce.