Top Stories

  • Exxon CEO tipped to be US Sec of State AAP - 10 minutes ago
    Exxon CEO tipped to be US Sec of State

    US President-elect Donald Trump is expected to name the chief executive of Exxon Mobil Corp as the country's top diplomat, a source familiar with the situation says. The appointment of Rex Tillerson as US Secretary of State would put in place an official with close ties to the Russian government. News of Tillerson's possible appointment comes as US intelligence analysts have concluded that Russia intervened in the 2016 election to help Trump win the White House.

  • Cormann rejects talk of recession AAP - 1 hour 9 minutes ago
    Cormann rejects talk of recession

    Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has rejected the suggestion the Australian economy could be in recession and won't be pursuing stimulus spending in the upcoming mid-year budget review. Figures last week ...

  • Nervousness as US interest rate hike looms AAP - 1 hour 12 minutes ago
    Nervousness as US interest rate hike looms

    The US Federal Reserve is poised to raise interest rates this week but the Australian share market's ongoing rally could relax in anticipation of the board's accompanying comments. Australian investors will find out on Thursday morning whether the US Federal Reserve will raise rates for the first time in 12 months, which AMP Capital's chief economist Shane Oliver said is 100 per cent priced in. In the run-up to the meeting there may be a bit of nervousness because the market has been used to low interest rates for so long, he said.

  • Oil producers agree to cut oil output AAP - 1 hour 20 minutes ago
    Oil producers agree to cut oil output

    Eleven non-OPEC producers have agreed at a summit in Vienna to reduce oil output by 558,000 barrels per day, pushing the total production cut by OPEC and non-OPEC members to 1.7 million bpd of crude. Thirteen OPEC members had agreed on November 30 to slash production by 1.2 million bpd. The production cut coming out of this weekend's summit between OPEC and non-OPEC members fell just short of the 600,000 bpd reduction that the cartel's leaders were hoping to achieve.

  • Vic govt vows to build missing road link AAP - 1 hour 21 minutes ago

    The so-called "missing link" would complete the Metropolitan Ring Road by connecting the ring road to either the Eastern Freeway or EastLink. "When we build the missing link that completes the ring road you'll be able to drive from Ringwood to Tullamarine without stopping at a single traffic light," Premier Daniel Andrews said in a statement on Sunday. It would be funded by a mixture of government contributions and tolls.

  • No recession, no stimulus spend: Cormann AAP - 1 hour 33 minutes ago

    Finance Minister Mathias Cormann won't be pursuing stimulus spending in the upcoming mid-year budget review even after recent figures showed the economy put in its worst performance in more than five years. While conceding the national accounts showing the economy shrank by 0.5 per cent in the September quarter was not a good result, he is not anticipating the December quarter will show a consecutive negative outcome, which would constitute a technical recession. Neither does he believe it is sensible to pursue "so-called stimulus spending", an approach Labor took and a course of action he says damaged the economy.

  • Greece passes austerity 2017 budget AAP - 2 hours 12 minutes ago
    Greece passes austerity 2017 budget

    Greece's Parliament has passed a budget of continued austerity as mandated by the country's creditors, but which forecasts robust growth for 2017. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras says it will mark Greece's "final exit" from its nearly decade-long financial crisis. The budget adds more than 1 billion euros in new taxes, mostly indirect taxes on items from phone calls to alcohol.

  • Kingsgate banks Thai law will save mine AAP - 2 hours 29 minutes ago

    Australian executives Kingsgate Consolidated Ltd are hoping a new Thai mining bill passed by parliament will save its mining operations from closure at the end of the year. Kingsgate's Thai offshoot, Akara Resources' mine in Chatree, 280km north of Bangkok, faces a December 31 shutdown after a May 10 order by the Thai cabinet for all gold mining operations in Thailand to cease. Kingsgate chairman Ross Smyth-Kirk says executives, have been lobbying for months to salvage the mine from closure, but so far have not been formally notified of the new legislation.

  • AA Gill dies after brief cancer battle AAP - 2 hours 50 minutes ago
    AA Gill dies after brief cancer battle

    Restaurant critic AA Gill, described as "a giant among journalists", has died after a short battle with cancer. Announcing the death in a memo to staff, editor Martin Ivens said: "It is with profound sadness that I must tell you that our much-loved colleague Adrian Gill died this morning. "Adrian was stoical about his illness, but the suddenness of his death has shocked us all.

  • Not locking in surplus timetable: Cormann AAP - 4 hours ago

    Finance Minister Mathias Cormann says the Turnbull government will get the budget back to surplus as soon as possible but won't lock itself into an artificial deadline. "We need to make decisions ...

  • Russia helped Trump win: US report AAP - 5 hours ago
    Russia helped Trump win: US report

    US intelligence analysts have concluded that Russia intervened in the presidential election to help Donald Trump win the White House, and not just to undermine confidence in the US electoral system, a senior US official says. US intelligence agencies have assessed that as the 2016 presidential campaign progressed, Russian government officials devoted increasing attention to assisting Trump's effort to win the election, the US official familiar with the finding told Reuters on Friday night, speaking on condition of anonymity. The president-elect's transition office released a statement that exaggerated his margin of victory and attacked the US intelligence community that Trump will soon command, but did not address the analysts' conclusion.

  • Four killed in Bulgarian train explosion AAP - 13 hours ago
    Four killed in Bulgarian train explosion

    Four people have been killed, 25 are injured and at least 20 buildings have been demolished after a cargo train derailed and exploded in northeastern Bulgaria. There are many people injured ... many with burns," Interior Ministry Chief Secretary Georgi Kostov said. Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borisov was travelling to the village, 280 km northeast of Sofia and home to about 800 people.

  • Murdoch Sky bid 'should be investigated' AAP - 13 hours ago
    Murdoch Sky bid 'should be investigated'

    Vince Cable, who was Britain's business secretary at the time of Murdoch's first bid in 2010-11 has told BBC radio the media tycoon's new takeover attempt would not be in the public interest. On Friday Murdoch's Twenty-First Century Fox said it had struck a preliminary deal to buy the 61 per cent of Sky it does not already own for about $US14 billion ($A19 billion).

  • Actor Judge Reinhold released from jail AAP - 23 hours ago
    Actor Judge Reinhold released from jail

    Actor Judge Reinhold has been released from a Dallas jail following his arrest for causing a disturbance at a local airport after refusing to be screened at a security checkpoint, police say. Reinhold was taken into custody on Thursday afternoon at Dallas Love Field airport, the city police department said in a statement. A spokeswoman from the Dallas Police Department on Friday confirmed Reinhold's release from a local detention facility.

  • Trump names Australian Liveris to post AAP - 23 hours ago
    Trump names Australian Liveris to post

    US president-elect Donald Trump says he will name Andrew Liveris - chairman and chief executive of Dow Chemical Co - to head the Manufacturing Council, a private sector group that advises the US secretary of commerce. Trump made the announcement during a rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he introduced Liveris, 62, a dual US-Australian citizen who said he had accepted the appointment. The panel to promote US manufacturing will be "tasked with finding ways to bring industry back to America," Trump said.

  • Ford small car US plans won't change: CEO AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 1:59 PM NZDT
    Ford small car US plans won't change: CEO

    Ford Motor Co is going ahead with plans to move small-car production from the United States to Mexico despite recent threats from president-elect Donald Trump. CEO Mark Fields says Ford's plan to move production of the Focus from Michigan to Mexico will proceed, in part because US consumers demand low prices for small cars. In a series of tweets on Sunday, Trump reiterated a threat to impose a 35-per-cent tariff on companies that build new plants abroad and sell products back to the US.

  • Canada 'deal' on federal carbon price AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 1:48 PM NZDT

    The Canadian government has agreed a deal with eight of Canada's 10 provinces to introduce its first federal carbon dioxide price, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says. Trudeau has said the move will help Canada meet its international climate change obligations. The energy-producing province of Saskatchewan did not sign up, saying the cost would be too great.

  • Troubled Italian bank's shares suspended AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 1:36 PM NZDT

    Shares of Italian bank Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS) have been temporarily suspended from trading after taking heavy losses. The losses on Friday followed media reports that the European Central Bank (ECB) has turned down an Italian request for more time to complete a rescue plan for the troubled lender. While the ECB refused to comment, MPS late on Friday came out with a statement saying it had received no communications from the ECB.

  • Fox makes $US14 billion bid for UK's Sky AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 1:26 PM NZDT
    Fox makes $US14 billion bid for UK's Sky

    Rupert Murdoch's Twenty-First Century Fox Inc has struck a preliminary deal to buy the 61 per cent of British pay-TV firm Sky Plc it does not already own for around $US14 billion ($A19 billion), five years after a political scandal wrecked a previous bid. The proposed offer of 10.75 pounds a share in cash is backed by Sky's independent directors and would strengthen the position of James Murdoch - who is both chief executive of Fox and chairman of Sky - in his 85-year-old father's media empire. People familiar with the matter said Fox had pounced after Britain's vote to leave the European Union in June sent the pound down about 14 per cent against the US dollar and Sky's share price tumbling.

  • Fox approaches Britain's Sky for takeover AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 11:23 AM NZDT
    Fox approaches Britain's Sky for takeover

    European pay-TV group Sky Plc says it has received a takeover approach from Rupert Murdoch's Twenty-First Century Fox Inc, the company's largest shareholder. Sky's shares were up 26 per cent to STG10 in late trading in London, while Fox's shares were up 4.3 per cent. Fox's offer of STG10.75 per share in cash, is a 36.2 per cent premium to Sky's Thursday close, and values the company at about STG18.48 billion ($A31.27 billion).

  • Two Canada provinces wary of carbon price AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 11:14 AM NZDT

    The Canadian government is trying to negotiate a first-ever federal carbon dioxide price with the country's 10 provinces, two of which appear increasingly unhappy about the potential financial price. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau - who says the price will help Canada meet its international climate change obligations - is promising to impose a carbon price on any province that refuses to sign on. Brad Wall, premier of oil- and gas-rich Saskatchewan, complains the price will make Canadian firms less competitive at a time when Donald Trump looks set to adopt policies cutting energy costs when he becomes US president next month.

  • Trump vows to target US worker visa abuses AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 11:03 AM NZDT

    US president-elect Donald Trump has pledged to stop companies from abusing the visa process for foreign workers in a way that undermines the labour market for locals. Speaking at a rally in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Trump said he had spent time during the presidential campaign with workers who were laid off but forced to train foreign hires brought in to replace them. "That's actually demeaning," Trump said.

  • Samsung to render exploding phones useless AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 10:57 AM NZDT
    Samsung to render exploding phones useless

    Samsung Electronics says a software update for Galaxy Note 7 smartphones will be released mid-December in the United States preventing them from charging and functioning as mobile phones, rendering them useless. The smartphone maker said that more than 93 per cent of all recalled Galaxy Note 7 devices had been returned as a part of its exchange program in the United States. The US Transportation Department and other agencies in October ordered Galaxy Note 7 owners from carrying the devices or stowing them in checked baggage during flights following reports of fires in replacement Note 7 devices.

  • Trump keeping job on Celebrity Apprentice AAP - Sat, Dec 10, 2016 10:24 AM NZDT
    Trump keeping job on Celebrity Apprentice

    President-elect Donald Trump won't be firing himself from Celebrity Apprentice. The Republican businessman plans to remain an executive producer on the show that made him a television star, a source confirmed to Reuters. Trump, who famously barked the catchphrase "You're fired!" as he dismissed competitors on the Apprentice and Celebrity Apprentice programs, stepped down from the program last year when he entered the 2016 Republican presidential race.

  • Macau ATM withdrawal limits impact Crown AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 7:32 PM NZDT
    Macau ATM withdrawal limits impact Crown

    Shares in James Packer's casinos operator Crown Resorts have fallen sharply amid reports authorities in Macau are planning to tighten ATM withdrawal limits in a bid to gain greater control over money flowing out of China and into the Macau gaming sector. Crown's joint venture in Macau, Melco Crown Entertainment, operates the City of Dreams and Studio City casino-resorts in Macau. The South China Morning Post has reported that Macau is set to cut by 50 per cent the amount of cash that holders of China UnionPay bank cards can take out of ATMs in Macau.

  • Sirtex shares plummet on earnings warning AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 7:25 PM NZDT

    More than $500 million has been wiped from market value of Sirtex Medical after device developer warned its earnings could fall due to weaker than expected sales growth. Sirtex shares dropped $9.49, or 37 per cent, to a two-and-a-half year low of $16.00, reducing its market value to $923 million. Chief executive Gilman Wong said market conditions had been volatile, with increased competition for patients, a rival drug approval and restrictions in reimbursements.

  • Turnbull firm against emissions plan AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 7:16 PM NZDT

    Malcolm Turnbull has warned state and territory leaders he won't agree to any climate policy that puts pressure on electricity prices, which have already risen 50 per cent in six years. The Council of Australian Governments meeting in Canberra on Friday received an interim report by chief scientist Dr Alan Finkel, which concluded that an EIS "had the lowest economic costs and the lowest impact on electricity prices". Addressing the meeting, he said it was the lack of clarity about a national emissions reduction policy beyond 2020 that was adding to investment uncertainty and pushing up prices.

  • Tassie keeps lights on despite challenges AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 7:14 PM NZDT

    Tasmania's energy supply sector has had a rough 12 months, battling bushfires, drought, storms, floods and the failure of a Bass Strait electricity cable delivering backup power from the mainland. But ...

  • $A on hold against $US AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 7:13 PM NZDT

    The Australian dollar has moved very little against the US dollar and may stay that way until the US Federal Reserve decides next week on whether to lift interest rates. At 1700 AEDT on Friday, the local ...

  • Shares rally to highest level since August AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 6:54 PM NZDT

    The share market has posted a fourth straight day of gains to hit its highest level since late August. Energy and financial companies drove Friday's gains, including Woodside Petroleum, Origin Energy and ...

  • Stocks to watch AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 6:34 PM NZDT

    Stocks of interest on the Australian share market: CWN - CROWN RESORTS - down 64 cents, or 5.3 per cent, at $11.40 Shares in James Packer's casinos operator Crown Resorts fell amid reports authorities ...

  • Market hits new high as rally continues AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 6:33 PM NZDT

    The share market has closed at a near four month as strength among the energy and financial heavyweights drove a fourth straight session of gains. At 1615 AEST on Friday, the S&P ASX/200 index was up 17 points, or 0.31 per cent, at 5,560.6, and the All Ordinaries was up 16.8 points, or 0.3 per cent, at 5,615.8 points.

  • Leaders struggle to advance key issues AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 6:14 PM NZDT

    Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull issued a warning afterwards, saying without serious structural and budgetary reforms the living standards of Australians are at risk. Mr Turnbull said the meeting had established a work agenda on economic and social reform, indigenous affairs, national security, community safety and social cohesion. "As always, our conversations have been wide ranging, positive and frank," he said in a joint press conference with state premiers and territory leaders.

  • Swan accuses govt of creating 'fake news' AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 5:47 PM NZDT
    Swan accuses govt of creating 'fake news'

    The federal government has been accused of using taxpayer funds to create "fake news" after Treasury published a report discrediting Labor's response to the global financial crisis. The Treasury report by Griffith University economics professor Tony Makin says Labor's fiscal stimulus program was ineffective and damaging. It's similar to a report written by Prof Makin two years ago, which was dismissed by then Treasury boss Martin Parkinson.

  • SA blackout cost business $367 million AAP - Fri, Dec 9, 2016 5:41 PM NZDT
    SA blackout cost business $367 million

    The blackout that plunged South Australia into darkness in September cost the state $367 million, a peak business body has revealed. Business SA says a survey of 200 of its members showed an average $120,000 was lost each minute in trading and production costs and wages. Business SA says the figures would have been worse if the power had gone out at the start of the trading day rather than after 4pm, but it was still a high price to pay.