CEOs to PM: support long-term growth

Original article by Patrick Durkin, Simon Evans
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 2-Sep-19

Business leaders have put forward suggestions for boosting the Australian economy, amid expectations that upcoming GDP data will show that growth slowed to a 10-year low of 1.4 per cent in the year to June. JB Hi-Fi CEO Richard Murray has emphasised the need for policy initiatives that support long-term economic growth, rather than merely stimulating the economy. Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci and Flight Centre CEO Graham Turner agree that further easing monetary policy is unlikely to be sufficient to boost the economy, while Cardo CEO Ian Ball has called for increased investment in transport infrastructure.

CORPORATES
JB HI-FI LIMITED – ASX JBH, WOOLWORTHS GROUP LIMITED – ASX WOW, FLIGHT CENTRE TRAVEL GROUP LIMITED – ASX FLT, CARDNO LIMITED – ASX CDD, COLES GROUP LIMITED – ASX COL, VIRGIN AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX VAH, CSL LIMITED – ASX CSL, BORAL LIMITED – ASX BLD, LINK ADMINISTRATION HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX LNK, WORLEYPARSONS LIMITED – ASX WOR, COCA-COLA AMATIL LIMITED – ASX CCL, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Grow business or be swamped: SEEK boss

Original article by Damon Kitney, Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 2 : 29-Aug-19

SEEK CEO Andrew Bassat­ and Macquarie Group CEO Shemara Wikramanayak have backed a recent call by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg for Australian companies to lift productivity by reinvesting in their business rather than returning capital to shareholders. Bassat says Australian companies will be less competitive internationally if their level of capital investment continues to lag that of their global peers. However, Boral CEO Mike Kane is amongst the business leaders who have rejected Frydenberg’s comments.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, SEEK LIMITED – ASX SEK, MACQUARIE GROUP LIMITED – ASX MQG, BORAL LIMITED – ASX BLD, FORTESCUE METALS GROUP LIMITED – ASX FMG

‘Political shocks turn into economic shocks’: RBA chief

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 26-Aug-19

Reserve Bank of Australia governor Philip Lowe has told the global monetary policy conference at Jackson Hole in Wyoming that the world is experiencing a period of major political shocks that are turning into economic shocks. Lowe also reiterated the need for governments to provide economic stimulus via infrastructure investment and structural reform, arguing that monetary policy alone is insufficient. Shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers says the federal government lacks a plan to turn around the Australian economy.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, BANK OF ENGLAND, UNITED STATES. EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT

Treasurer tells CEOs: get positive

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 26-Aug-19

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg will use a Business Council of Australia speech on 26 August to stress the need for the corporate sector to take action to boost productivity and wages. He will argue that lifting the nation’s average annual rate of productivity growth from about 1.1 per cent at present to 1.5 per cent would boost the economy by $70bn over the next decade and increase real wages by four per cent. Frydenberg will also urge business leaders to increase capital investment, including in new technologies, rather than focusing on returning capital to investors via share buybacks and special dividends.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA

Treasurer in bid to allay surplus fears

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 8-Aug-19

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has downplayed concerns about the US-China trade war, stressing that it will not affect the federal government’s timetable for returning the Budget to surplus. Frydenberg has acknowledged that financial market volatility following China’s move to devalue the yuan was a concern, but he has cautioned against an overreaction. Labor has urged the government to bring forward income tax cuts and infrastructure spending in order to stimulate the economy.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, VICTORIA. DEPT OF PREMIER AND CABINET, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Fiscal policy needs to play bigger role

Original article by David Rogers
The Australian – Page: 27 : 12-Jul-19

HSBC Australia’s chief economist Paul Bloxham says the federal government’s tax cuts are likely to have a similar short-term economic impact as an 0.5 per cent reduction in the cash rate. Bloxham adds that there is plenty of scope for the government to stimulate the economy via fiscal policy, particularly given that there is limited capacity for monetary policy to provide further stimulus. He has also flagged the possibility of establishing an independent fiscal authority to co-ordinate fiscal and monetary policy.

CORPORATES
HSBC AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS PTY LTD, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

RBA chief backs Frydenberg plan

Original article by Richard Ferguson, Rachel Baxendale
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 12-Jul-19

Reserve Bank of Australia governor Philip Lowe says he is in full agreement with Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s view that the Australian economy remains sound. Lowe and Frydenberg met for two hours in Melbourne on 11 July. Lowe said after the meeting that it was a "remarkable achievement" that more Australians have a job now than at any previous time in the country’s history, while shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers claimed that Frydenberg is letting the RBA do nearly all of the heavy lifting.

CORPORATES
RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

Target surplus, but keep on spending

Original article by Rosie Lewis
The Australian – Page: 6 : 10-Jul-19

Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox says there is scope for the federal government to pursue stimulus measures in addition to its income tax cuts package. He says that although returning the Budget to surplus should remain a priority, there should also be increased government spending in areas that will generate economic growth. Treasury Josh Frydenberg is confident that the economy will be boosted by factors such as the tax cuts, monetary policy easing and the Coalition’s infrastructure spending program.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIAN RESOURCES AND ENERGY GROUP, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

Warning of reform or forgo $1.5 trillion windfall

Original article by Sid Maher
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 18-Jun-19

The 2019 Australian National Outlook report highlights the economic benefits from pursuing economic, social and environmental reform over coming decades, and the likely cost of failing to undertake reform. The two-year study concludes that a wide-ranging reform agenda could see the Australian economy grow to between $5.5trn and $5.6trn by 2060; conversely, the economy would grow to just $4.1trn without such reform. The report also warns that in a worst-case scenario, the digital divide could see the unemployment rate could peak at 20 per cent by 2040 and then average 10 per cent in future years.

CORPORATES
CSIRO, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB

Frydenberg to flesh out growth plan

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 7-Jun-19

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says he is prepared to look at new measures that might boost the economy, so long as they do not represent a breach of election commitments. Frydenberg says his first task is to implement the measures in the Coalition’s pre-election Budget. Frydenberg is about to attend the G20 Finance Meeting in Japan, and he says he will hold talks with his overseas counterparts about reforms to boost productivity that they might be embracing in their economies.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. PRODUCTIVITY COMMISSION, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA