Follow-up to bank probe

Original article by John Kehoe, Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 14-Feb-19

Labor’s push to recall parliament for an additional two weeks in March seems unlikely to succeed after three crossbenchers signalled that they will oppose the motion. Meanwhile, the federal government has told banks and industry regulators that it will hold another inquiry in three years’ time to make sure that the misconduct exposed by the financial services royal commission is not being repeated. Labor in turn has proposed harsher penalties for misconduct in the sector.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY, AUSTRALIAN BANKING ASSOCIATION, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

Katter hands PM a temporary reprieve

Original article by Rosie Lewis, Richard Gluyas
The Australian – Page: 5 : 13-Feb-19

Financial Services Council CEO Sally Loane has cautioned against rushing legislation through parliament in response to the final report of the financial services royal commission. Meanwhile, independent MP Bob Katter has signalled that he will not support Labor’s push to recall parliament for an additional two weeks in March to implement some of the inquiry’s recommendations. He argues that the federal government should take action immediately. Katter has also described the royal commission’s recommendations as "worthless".

CORPORATES
FINANCIAL SERVICES COUNCIL, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, NATIONAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA

Prime Minister Scott Morrison talks down threat to Coalition after loss in Parliament vote

Original article by Brett Worthington
abc.net.au – Page: Online : 13-Feb-19

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has ruled out calling an early election after the House of Representatives narrowly passed a bill to allow doctors to approve the transfer of asylum-seekers to Australia for medical treatment. The amendments to a federal government migration bill were passed 75-74 after being backed by Labor and the majority of crossbenchers. The government had released legal advice from Solicitor-General Stephen Donaghue which suggested that the so-called medivac bill could be in breach of the ­Constitution.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. OFFICE OF THE GOVERNMENT SOLICITOR

Banks’ election risks rise

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 12-Feb-19

Labor requires 76 votes in the lower house to force parliament to sit for an additional two weeks to legislate some of the Hayne royal commission’s recommendations. The support of crossbenchers may be crucial, and independent MP Bob Katter says he may be prepared to back Labor’s motion. This could potentially see the government abandon a deal struck with Katter regarding supply and confidence following the Wentworth by-election. Prime Minister Scott Morrison argues that there is insufficient time before the election to enact all of Hayne’s recommendations that will require legislation.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS, AUSTRALIAN PRUDENTIAL REGULATION AUTHORITY

PM’s big stick to be stuck in Senate

Original article by Greg Bright
The Australian – Page: 6 : 7-Dec-18

The Senate’s standing committee on economics will examine the federal government’s bill to force electricity retailers to divest assets after Labor referred it to the upper house. The lower house debated the bill on 6 December, before parliament rose for the year, but further debate will not be possible until early April as the committee is not slated to report on the bill until 18 March. Shadow treasurer Chris Bowen has accused the government of trying to push the bill through the lower house with no scrutiny and minimal debate.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. SENATE STANDING COMMITTEE ON ECONOMICS

Divestment powers put on fast track

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 6-Dec-18

Australia Energy Council CEO Sarah McNamara has flagged a possible legal challenge to the federal government’s legislation to force the divestment of energy assets. McNamara says there is still uncertainty regarding the constitutional validity of the bill, despite a compromise which will require the Federal Court to approve any application for asset sales. The bill is expected to be passed by the lower house after four crossbenchers backed a motion for it to be debated and voted upon before parliament rises for the year.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN ENERGY COUNCIL, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, ORIGIN ENERGY LIMITED – ASX ORG, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

Deserter fuels Coalition chaos

Original article by Simon Benson, Rosie Lewis, Joe Kelly
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 28-Nov-18

The federal government will require the support of at least two crossbenchers to pass bills in the lower house after Victorian MP Julia Banks resigned from the Liberal Party to become an independent. Banks’ defection to the crossbench means the Coalition has just 73 seats in the House of Representatives. This could give Labor sufficient support to refer Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton to the High Court over his eligibility to be in Parliament. The government in turn has questioned the eligibility of several Labor MPs. Banks has promised to support the government on issues of confidence and supply.

CORPORATES
LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF HOME AFFAIRS, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS, CENTRE ALLIANCE

Warning over integrity watchdog

Original article by Ben Packham
The Australian – Page: 4 : 27-Nov-18

The federal government agreed to support a Labor motion to establish a national integrity commission on 26 November, following a backdown by Prime Minister Scott Morrison. The Coalition did not oppose the motion after MP Llew O’Brien signalled that he may be prepared to cross the floor. Meanwhile, Attorney-General Christian Porter has warned that as drafted, a crossbench bill to establish an anti-corruption commission could apply to federal public servants, including ABC and SBS journalists.

CORPORATES
LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, SPECIAL BROADCASTING SERVICE (SBS), AUSTRALIAN COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY

Eligibility case to test Morrison minority

Original article by Rosie Lewis, Ben Packham
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 6-Nov-18

The federal government’s loss of its majority in the House of Representatives means it will require the support of at least one lower house crossbencher to pass bills. However, some crossbenchers have requested access to legal advice on the eligibility of Liberal MP Chris Crewther to be in Parliament, amid speculation that they may seek a motion to have his case referred to the High Court. There are concerns that Crewther’s investment in Gretals Australia may breach the Constitution, given that the pharmaceutical company has benefited from taxpayer-funded research grants.

CORPORATES
LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, GRETALS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIAN RESEARCH COUNCIL, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF HOME AFFAIRS, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, HIGH COURT OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIAN GREENS

As TPP clears the Senate, Morrison hails export boon

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 2 : 18-Oct-18

The Senate has voted 33-15 to pass a bill to ratify the 11-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership, after it gained the support of Labor and several cross-benchers. Unions had opposed the TPP, particularly the provisions with regard to labour market testing and investor-state dispute settlements, and Labor will seek to remove these clauses from the TPP if it wins the next election. Prime Minister Scott Morrison notes that economic modelling suggests that the TPP will increase Australia’s national income by about $15.6bn a year by 2030.

CORPORATES
TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE, AUSTRALIAN GREENS, CENTRE ALLIANCE