Editor Picks - oceania
Australia's Central Bank Will Not Change Interest Rates Yet
Australia's central Bank may keep its interest rate at the same level for a fourth month, which means that next on the agenda are increasing borrowing costs as the economy shows signs of improvement. Glenn Stevens, Reserve Bank Governor, will maintain the overnight cash rate target at 3 percent as of August 4, 2009. He believes the economy will recover faster than he forecast at the beginning of the year as record low interest rates boosted consumer and business confidence. He cut interest rates "by a record 4.25 percentage points between September 2008 and April 2009" and hopes policy makers will find "a suitable timely way of returning to normal when the right time for that comes."
Australian Agriculture Exports May Achieve $26 billion
Australia, the world's fourth-largest wheat exporter, may produce more of the grain than previously predicted after rain lifted crop prospects, National Australia Bank Ltd. said July 22. Australian farmers sow crops including wheat, barley and canola from about April to June for harvest from November. Wheat production in Australia will rise in the next financial year, Penm said, without giving precise figures. An El Nino weather pattern may become a risk for Australian farming conditions later this year, he said.
Costco to Invest $ 22 Million in Australia
The store on the fringe of Melbourne's central business district will be followed by an outlet in Sydney's western suburbs before Costco looks at more openings in the nation of almost 22 million, Australian Managing Director Patrick Noone said in an interview. The Issaquah, Washington-based retailer enters a market where Woolworths and Wesfarmers' Coles unit control almost three quarters of supermarket sales. "We'll have to see a competitive response from Coles and Woolworths," said Saxon Nicholls, who manages the equivalent of $439 million at Herschel Asset Management Ltd. in Melbourne. "The Australian retailers already have substantial scale in the market and it will depend on Costco getting its own scale in Australia."
New Zealand: 70% Small Businesses Grew Last Year
New Zealand businesses are showing self-reliance in the face of the economic downturn. This is a key theme emerging from the 2009 Mood of the Boardroom survey, says Business NZ. Mood of the Boardroom, run jointly by Business NZ and the NZ Herald.
Australia's Central Bank Kept Interest Rates Unchanged
Australia was one of the few major economies including China and India to grow in the first quarter as government cash handouts and rate cuts stoked consumer spending. Growth may slow after recent reports showed exports dropped to a 14-month low, bank lending fell, home building approvals declined by the most since 2002 and job advertisements tumbled for a 14th month.
Oceania's Dollar Rose for a Second Day
The Australian and New Zealand currencies were the second- and third-best performers among major currencies against the U.S. dollar over the past three months as interest rates of 3 percent in Australia and 2.5 percent in New Zealand attracted investors to the South Pacific nations' assets. South Africa's rand is the top performer.
CSR Planning to Increase Sugar Value
CSR Ltd., Australia's second-largest maker of building products, is planning to spin off its sugar unit to take advantage of a 27 percent jump in prices for the sweetener in the past year and improving capital markets.
New Zeland Increases Business Confidence
New Zealand is expecting to get out from the recession in the quarter this year, growing the economy confidence.
Australian Airlines Addresses $66 Million Shortfall
National Australian airline Qantas has committed $66 million to cover a shortfall caused by the current economic crisis.
Canadian Fund Bids for Australia's Mac Satellite
A Canadian superannuation fund has launched a friendly $1.37 billion takeover bid for Macquarie Communications Infrastructure Group, in a move that put the squeeze on short sellers yesterday across the constellation of Macquarie's struggling listed satellite funds.
Australian Banks Optimistic
The big bank bosses have declared Australia has weathered the worst of the global financial crisis, with some predicting official interest rates as low as 2 per cent later this year as the Reserve Bank attempts to keep the economy pumping.