THE NEWS WRAP: $11bn Telstra-NBN deal gets mixed reception

The $11 billion agreement between Telstra and the National Broadband Network has received a mixed reaction from investors, with shares in the telco giant slipping 2.3% following the announcement.


While some analysts expressed doubts, Google has given it the thumbs up, with the search giant’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt saying that the NBN was a “remarkable program.”


Migration fall adds to skills pressures


Net migration to Australia has plunged, according to new figures, with numbers nearly halving between 2008 and 2010.


The Bureau of Statistics said that net migration stood at 171,000 in 2010, a big drop on 316,000 in 2008. The drop will heighten fears over skills shortages, putting pressure on interest rates.  


Magistrate warning over sham contracting


A federal magistrate has warned businesses over the practice of sham contracting after handing down fines in the first case of its kind brought by the Fair Work Ombudsman.


Two former managers, the owner and the human resources manager of Parramatta-based Centennial Financial Services for dismissing nine employees and rehiring them as contractors.


Magistrate Robert Cameron said the owner bore ultimate responsibility but that the human resources manager should’ve been aware of the issue.  




The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by 59.67 points to 12,050. The Australian dollar was down to 105.46 US cents


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