Financial literacy is a public policy problem

It’s pretty common nowadays to see the likes of the Reserve Bank of Australia or the Australian Bureau of Statistics issue warnings about the size of Australian household debt. The reason is that the consequences of poor financial decisions often reach far wider than an individual or family. The global financial crisis showed us how rapidly financial contagion can spread – … Read more

MERITON MANIPULATED THEIR TRIPADVISOR RATING BY PREVENTING GUESTS FROM POSTING BAD REVIEWS

The Federal Court has found that accommodation provider Meriton engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct by implementing a strategy to minimise the number of negative reviews its guests posted on the TripAdvisor website. In November 2016, the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) instituted proceedings against Meriton in the Federal Court, alleging that between November … Read more

Why big projects like the Adani coal mine won’t transform regional Queensland

Queensland election campaigns often focus on big projects for the regions, such as for roads, power plants and mines. But research suggests that mega projects, such as in gas and coal, have not transformed skills or improved employment prospects in regional Queensland. Take away the temporary booms from construction and other short-term jobs, and employment growth overall is no better … Read more

Why the RBA would want to create a digital Australian dollar

The Reserve Bank of Australia could join the likes of Estonia and Lebanon in creating a cryptocurrency based on the Australian dollar, to reap the benefits of technology like the blockchain but with more stability than other well known currencies like Bitcoin. The RBA has already been approached by interested startups to create this new digital currency, known as … Read more

Government announces fintech “bridge” to UK to foster collaboration and investment

Treasurer Scott Morrison has unveiled plans for a new fintech “bridge” agreement between Australia and the UK in an effort to up investment in Aussie fintech startupsand make “digital business a global business”. Speaking at FinTech Australia’s Intersekt Collab/Collide summit today, Morrison announced the agreement will be signed by the end of the year. The commitment … Read more

REMOVAL OF DOUBLE TAX ON CRYPTOCURRENCIES SAID TO SUPPORT AUSTRALIA’S OWN SILICON VALLEY

Legislation to remove double taxation on digital currencies, such as Bitcoin, has been passed by Australian Parliament, with fintech industry leaders describing the news as a win for consumers and businesses. The Treasury Laws Amendment (2017 Measures No. 6) Bill 2017  was tabled in Parliament, last month, by Treasurer Scott Morrison. He said the reform, which will … Read more

SheStarts secures $500,000 government grant to help female-led startups go global

BlueChilli’s female-led startup accelerator SheStarts is looking to help its alumni network go global as it opens applications for its second cohort, after receiving a recent $500,000 funding boost from the Australian government. Launched in October last year with a $1 million fund from BlueChilli, SheStarts bills itself as the the country’s only venture-backed national tech accelerator that is … Read more

Bike-sharing startup oBike faces strict safety rules as Melbourne city councils take action

Three Melbourne city councils have announced strict new rules for bike-share service oBike that will allow the councils to confiscate abandoned bicycles and issue fines for the startup’s bikes found breaching these new rules. The Melbourne, Yarra and Port Phillip councils came together to sign a memorandum of understanding with oBike in a bid to … Read more

RISING ENERGY COSTS CURTAILING SME GROWTH; OMBUDSMAN BLAMES PRICE GOUGING, POLITICS

Research showing that SMEs are reducing capital expenditure due to rising energy prices has prompted criticism of the state governments by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman. The Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, pointed to the latest East & Partners SME survey* of 1280 businesses, which showed that 39.5% of SMES plan to scale back short-term capital … Read more