Weekly Digest – 6 September 2023

Welcome to our Weekly Digest – stay in the know with some recent news updates relevant to business and the economy.

Australia’s inflation rate eased to 4.9% in July, down from 5.4% in June

Australia’s inflation rate eased last month to its lowest level in 17 months, led by falling prices for fresh produce and automotive fuel, reducing the likelihood the Reserve Bank will need to raise interest rates again.

One in four NSW businesses think they’ll slash workforce

Almost a quarter of businesses across all major industries in New South Wales plan to cut staff numbers over the next three months, new research has found.

Pepper Money buys HSBC’s $1.3 billion NZ mortgage portfolio

One of Australia’s leading non-bank lenders Pepper Money (ASX: PPM) has reached a deal with HSBC to acquire its New Zealand prime residential mortgage portfolio, which has an outstanding balance of approximately NZ$1.4 billion ($1.29 billion).

‘Markets have been able to recover’: Interest rate pause expected as markets find peace

CommSec’s Tom Piotrowski says markets seem to have found some peace “for the moment”, which could lead to a pause of future interest rate hikes.

Wealth of data to shed light on Australian economy

Inflation figures and a speech by incoming Reserve Bank governor Michele Bullock will be closely watched for signs of Australia’s economic slowdown.

Slowdown in China’s economy and deflation is a ‘warning’ for Australia

The slowdown in China’s economy and its deflation is a “warning” for Australia, according to Sky News Business Editor Ross Greenwood.

Climate change will impact interest rates, incoming RBA boss says

Incoming Reserve Bank boss Michele Bullock has warned the RBA will consider climate change when setting future interest rates.
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Government prepares for battle over the gig economy

Gig economy workers in Australia are set to benefit from minimum pay and protection against unfair deactivation. A series of new industrial relations laws has been released to remove pressure from gig workers relying on tips to make ends meet.

Independent review into small business payment times

The government has released the written report of the independent review of the Payment Times Reporting Act 2020. The review finds that the Payment Times Reporting Scheme has merit but current legislative requirements impose unnecessary regulatory burdens on reporting entities, compromise the accuracy and accessibility of the payment times data and limit the effectiveness of the Regulator. The review makes 14 recommendations, encompassing 23 actions for Government.

Corruption damages national economy

Australia faces the prospect of lower investment, a weaker health system and higher business costs without a concerted effort to tackle corruption. Assistant Treasury Minister Andrew Leigh outlined some of the risks from corruption in a speech to Transparency International Australia.

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