Mining gloom saps confidence
Business confidence slumped last month as debate about the end of Australia's mining boom overwhelmed signs that lower interest rates were starting to bolster trading conditions, according to The Australian.
Falling commodity prices and a spate of shelved or delayed mining projects sapped confidence among mining firms in August, although actual profitability improved and trading conditions bounced to their highest level in five months, according to National Australia Bank's monthly business survey of more than 500 firms.
Iron ore prices bounce on stimulus hopes
Iron ore prices have bounced strongly on hopes that Chinese infrastructure spending will boost demand for steel, but traders and analysts warn the upward momentum could be short-lived, according to the Australian Financial Review.
The Steel Index spiked 7% overnight to $US95 a tonne on Monday, taking its direction from Shanghai Futures Exchange-traded rebar prices which bounced strongly off a three-year low.
But prices were still 29% below where they stood in early July.
Abbott call for end to foreign investment infighting
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has attempted to draw a line under Coalition infighting over foreign investment, warning his colleagues against complacency and reminding them that “we all support foreign investment”, according to the Australian Financial Review.
Abbott reminded the joint party room on Tuesday that “we have to show that we are the adults in the room” and that the Coalition supported foreign investment.
Debate about the sale of Cubbie Station, which is worth up to $275 million, has raged since late August when Treasurer Wayne Swan approved the purchase of the massive property by a Chinese-led consortium.