THE NEWS WRAP: ACCC gives the green light to CBA takeover of Aussie

Consumer watchdog the ACCC has given the green light to a takeover of Aussie Home Loans by the Commonwealth Bank.


The approval leaves the bank free to purchase the two-thirds of the shares in the mortgage provider it doesn’t currently own from founder “Aussie” John Symond.


“In reaching its view, the ACCC took into account the competitive constraint arising from the presence of a number of alternative suppliers of home loan products and mortgage distribution services,” ACCC chairman Rod Sims said.


Billabong placed in a trading halt


Surfwear giant Billabong was placed in a trading halt yesterday following a sudden drop in the troubled company’s share price, sparking concerns potential suitors had walked away from their takeover bids.


The company is set to resume trading today after confirming to the ASX that negotiations are still continuing with the two rival consortia, led by Sycamore Partners and Altamont Capital.


Billabong claims it is unaware of any reason for the sudden drop in its share value.


Europe sets a Monday deadline for Cyprus


The European Central Bank has told Cyprus it has until Monday to raise $7.2 billion, or it risk losing a multibillion dollar bailout package of its troubled banks.


The move comes as Cypriot finance minister Michael Sarris is in Moscow to negotiate possible Russian investment in the nation’s troubled banks, after politicians voted down an unpopular once-off tax on bank deposits.


“The banks are the ultimate objective in any support we get, so it’ll either be a direct support to the banks or the support that we get through other sectors will be channelled to the banks,” Mr Sarris said.




The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down 0.62% to 14421.49. The Aussie dollar is up to US104.59 cents.


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