THE NEWS WRAP: Telstra building financial war chest as it prepares to sell off Sensis

Telstra is building a multi-billion dollar war chest for acquisitions and to return funds to shareholders as it plans to sell a large stake in its Sensis directories business, The Australian Financial Review reports.

 

It says US private equity firm Platinum Equity Partners is believed to be in final negotiations with Telstra to buy a controlling stake in Sensis, which publishes the Yellow and White Pages print and online directories.

 

The AFR reports that analysts have valued Sensis at about $3 billion.

 

Federal government targets red tape

 

The federal government plans to abolish more than 8000 redundant federal laws as part of its plan to slash red and green tape by $1 billion a year, The Australian reports.

 

“This is an area where previous governments have over-promised and under-delivered,” the parliamentary secretary to the Prime Minister, Josh Frydenberg, says.

 

The government plans to hold a “repeal day” in March to overturn a raft of laws.

 

Don’t outsource Australia’s financial markets: ASX

 

The Australian Securities Exchange has warned against outsourcing its financial system overseas.

 

The Australian newspaper says ASX chief executive Elmer Funke Kupper says in a submission that it’s important that Australia’s regulators keep a level of control over key markets and that investors can continue “to have access to financial markets that allow them to manage their risk and collateral under Australian law”.

 

“To achieve the right outcome, it may require explicit measures and mandates to ensure that Australia does not find one day that it has ‘outsourced’ its financial markets to overseas financial centres – balanced against the reputation of Australia as an open and competitive economy,” he says in the submission to the draft terms of reference to the “Son of Wallis” inquiry into the financial system.

 

Markets

 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down 0.05% at 16,437.05 points and the Australian dollar is buying US90 cents.

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