Business News Releases

Rate stay: RBA must work with government to support small business finance availability

PEAK retail industry body the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is concerned for the future of small business after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) left the current cash rate of 2.5 percent unchanged today.

ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman said it continues to be extremely difficult for businesses, especially small to medium businesses, to expand and contribute their full potential to the Australian economy without sufficient financial support in the post GFC finance world.

“It is crucial that the RBA and government work together to find a way of supporting small business finance availability. Without access to much-needed finance, the retail sector will not be able to move forward and develop.

“The ARA is also worried that a rate stay at this time of year may reverse the positive results that the industry has worked hard to achieve over the last few months, particularly during the booming Christmas period.

“We were also hoping for a reduction in the current cash rate in order stimulate employment, particularly youth employment which has recently hit an 11-year low. The ARA is strongly concerned for the future of Australian retail workers and a reduction today would have certainly supported the retail industry and encouraged employment opportunities for the leaders of tomorrow.

“While business needs support it is also important for consumers to continue to have relief on their stretched budgets to allow them to support the retail economy.

“The ARA believes the current cash rate has room for further adjustment and we have every hope that with the RBA’s support, the retail sector will experience a healthier and more successful year compared to the last,” Mr Zimmerman said.

Since 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) has been the peak industry body representing Australia’s $265 billion retail sector, which employs over 1.2 million people. The ARA ensures retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 5,000 independent and national retail members throughout Australia.

Visit or call 1300 368 041.



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New report confirms the real threats to the reef

QUEENSLAND's peak body for the resources sector has welcomed the release today of the Australian Government's progress report to UNESCO's World Heritage Committee on the state of conservation of the Great Barrier Reef ('the State Party Report').

Queensland Resource Council Chief Executive Michael Roche says the report outlines the significant progress made by Australia in the past 12 months to comprehensively deliver on the requests of the World Heritage Committee (WHC) concerning the management of the Reef.

'The State Party Report again documents the real threats to the reef as being extreme weather events, the potential effects of climate change, the crown of thorns starfish infestations and nutrient and sediment run-off from land clearing and broad-scale agriculture,' Mr Roche said.

'Flying in the face of the hysterical reaction from some quarters to the granting on Friday of a dredging permit at Abbot Point, the State Party report identifies impacts from port development and dredging as minor, temporary and localised.'

Mr Roche congratulated the Australian and Queensland Governments and their partners in industry and the research community for the fine work being done to turn around the health of the reef, particularly with the efforts on controlling the crown of thorns infestations and improving agricultural practices.

'I urge everyone interested in the health of the reef to read the State Party Report,' said Mr Roche. 'The report documents for example the severe impacts of cyclones and the resultant flood plumes.'

Mr Roche said the report also outlined the measures being pursued with industry support to further enhance shipping safety and reduce the environmental impacts of shipping, under the North East Shipping Management Plan.

'ndustry also has lent its support to the Queensland Government's ports strategy, which restricts any significant port development to existing ports such as Abbot Point and Gladstone.

Mr Roche said that one gap in the State Party Report was that it overlooked the economic contribution of the resource sector operations that rely on ports adjacent to the Reef.

'In 2012-13, Queensland resources operations directly injected spending of $38 billion into the Queensland economy, and was responsible for one in four dollars of the Queensland economy and one in five jobs.' 



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Enter the Resources Awards for Women for 2014

Time is running out to enter the 2014 QRC Resources Awards for Women.

Run in partnership with Women in Mining and Resources Queensland, the awards celebrate the achievements of women in the resources sector and provide role models and ambassadors for the sector in Queensland.

Men are also invited to enter the Gender Diversity Champion category.

This category is open to both men and women who have made outstanding contributions toward diversity in the sector’s workforce.

In addition to the overall award, there are categories for our 'rising stars', women working in trades and as operators, and an award recognising outstanding diversity initiatives implemented by companies.

We look forward to again receiving many great entries and making it as difficult as possible for the judges.

Resources Awards for Women - Click here to download forms

Come and hear Jacqui Mcgill, Asset President BHP Billiton Mitsui Coal (BMC) who will be keynote speaker at the 2014 QRC International Women's Day breakfast.

Jacqui is an experienced resource professional with a significant portfolio of operational experience in the resources sector including iron ore, coal, base metals and uranium.

She has a degree in minerals processing and an MBA and is a keen mentor and advocate for diversity.

BMC operates two mines in the Bowen Basin: South Walker Creek Mine and Poitrel Mine.

Bookings are now open for the breakfast and presentation of the 2014 Resources Awards for Women (RAW).

It will take place at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Friday 7 March 2014 when the 2014 RAW winners will be announced.

We hope to see you there.

Click below to book your table or seat. Be quick to secure the best seats in the house:

QRC International Women's Day Breakfast and Resources Awards for Women 



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Saxo Capital Markets has new portal combining social features with award-winning trading platform

SYDNEY ‒ A new online social trading community for serious investors,, was revealed in beta today by Saxo Bank in Copenhagen.

Saxo Capital Markets (Australia) Pty Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of Saxo Bank, and is also offering to its clients. The new portal enables traders around the world to share their trades with peers and transforms trading into a social experience.

"We want to set free the peer-to-peer power of traders around the globe by enabling them to minded investors who are tired of input from CEOs Kim Fournais and Lars Seier Christensen said in a joint statement.

On the new site, live now at, investors can share their trades in a community where all performance data is verified so traders can be sure of the performance of the people they choose to follow or copy.

Kim Fournais and Lars Seier Christensen believe it may be a game changer:

"Having once revolutionised online trading as a first mover in 1998, we now want to democratise the access to trading and fund management by opening up an otherwise closed world of trading.

"We now enable investors to share their trades openly, interact with each other, post comments and strategies, discuss, follow and copy each other. We believe that this may change radically how investors will go about trading FX, CFDs, options, futures, bonds and equities in the future, making trading a social experience,” they said.

At the new, you can see what the best participating traders are doing with their own money in any asset class of your choice.

"We are deliberately only featuring real traders with real accounts trading their own money to ensure a social trading community of serious investors.”





The new also features a range of valuable content for traders, such as market news and views, data, insights and trade ideas from Saxo’s research teams and VIP authors.

A real-time trade stream will reveal the current market sentiment. British award-winning ITV News correspondent Angus Walker has joined Saxo and will, along with former Bloomberg and BBC World anchor Owen Thomas, front the portal’s on-demand TV channel by reporting from Saxo’s own trading floor.



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VECCI welcomes strong regional employment figures

VICTORIA’s peak employer body has welcomed results that showed regional employment in Victoria increased by 19,200, or 2.6 percent, making it the strongest performing state nationally in 2013.

“Thriving business centres throughout Victoria are vital to the economic strength of our state, so it’s wonderful to see so many more people employed,” says VECCI Chief Executive Mark Stone.

Mr Stone’s comments come as Australian Bureau of Statistics results show Victoria’s regional employment increased by 19,200 jobs in 2013 and regional unemployment averaged 5.3 percent over the three months to December 2013, the lowest for regional areas in Australia.

Areas of particularly strong employment growth in 2013 included:

• Central-Highlands-Wimmera: 7,600 persons (7 percent increase)

• Loddon-Mallee: 19,300 persons (14.6 percent increase)

• Goulburn-Ovens-Murray: 7,600 persons (5 percent increase)

“We’ve been working closely with government and industry throughout Victoria to continually improve the business environment and are delighted to see these results,” says Mr Stone.

“The State Government must capitalise on this growth by pushing on with regional infrastructure projects, lowering costs for business and continuing red tape reform to ensure Victoria remains competitive.” 



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