News Wrap

IN this morning's wrap: Tinkler on the warpath; state governments defend energy record; and Chinese bank conditions impact coal, iron ore.
News Wrap News Wrap News Wrap News Wrap News Wrap

Nathan Tinkler

Lou Caruana

Tinkler on the warpath

Nathan Tinkler is considering removing Whitehaven Coal directors to regain control over the miner in a bid to shore up his finances, according to the Australian Financial Review.

Tinkler, whose $A5.25 billion takeover bid for the miner collapsed last month, has suggested to at least one senior company insider that he may seek the removal of directors at Whitehaven as he previously had at Aston Resources and Coalworks.

Tinkler has a 21.4% stake in the company. The move could put the embattled entrepreneur in a position to determine the destiny of his biggest asset at a time when he is facing calls from creditors, including Mirvac and Blackwood Corp, for payments worth a combined $46 million.

State governments defend energy record

Queensland and New South Wales conservative governments have hit back at claims they are responsible for large power increases, saying the Gillard government is attempting to deflect the blame from the impact of the carbon tax and the Renewable Energy Target, according to the AFR.

As a senate inquiry into electricity prices holds public hearings in Melbourne today, Queensland Energy Minister Mark McArdle said the government was already conducting a review of the state network companies to curb spending on poles and wires.

Visiting Brisbane on Wednesday, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott renewed his attack on the impact of the carbon tax on electricity bills and praised the Newman government for freezing household power tariffs.

Chinese bank conditions impact coal, iron ore

Tough credit conditions in China continue to weigh on iron ore and coal markets, as Chinese banks strengthen their oversight of approving new loans to finance purchases, according to the AFR.

Spot iron ore prices were unchanged at close on Tuesday at $US103.70 a tonne, according to The Steel Index.

While many miners had hoped that easing credit restrictions would have a flow-on impact on commodity prices, one of China’s biggest steel makers, Hong Kong-listed Maanshan Iron and Steel, filed 23 civil cases involving nine companies as well as individuals that have not fulfilled steel supply contracts as steel prices have fallen.