THE NEWS WRAP: ACCC issues hit list

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has warned major supermarket chains will be under greater scrutiny as part of an aggressive approach to competition regulation.

 

 

As part of the crackdown, ACCC chairman Rod Sims said the competition watchdog will also focus on airport owners, wheat port operators and the franchising sector.

 

Sims said competition in the infrastructure sector, including energy, water and transport companies, will also become a major focus in coming months.

 

Jetstar workers take action

 

The check-in staff of budget airline Jetstar will waive excess baggage fees for 24 hoursthe Australian Services Union has announced.

 

Workers will begin the action at airports in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and the Gold Coast on Friday morning, after negotiations over a new workplace agreement were stalled.

 

The action will take place between 3.30am on Friday and 3.30am on Saturday. The move comes as Qantas ground staff, engineers and pilots continue a campaign of industrial action.

 

Facebook acquires friend.ly

 

Social media giant Facebook has announced the acquisition of Silicon Valley start-up friend.ly, which previously developed a question-and-answer service for the site.

 

A Facebook spokesperson said friend.ly has created “a really compelling way for people to express themselves and meet others through answering questions”.

 

Neither firm revealed the terms of the takeover, or when the transaction was expected to be completed, although friend.ly is expected to continue operating as a separate service.

 

Overnight

 

The Australian dollar was higher this morning after reaching parity with the greenback overnight for the first time since September 22.

 

It hit an overnight high of US100.15 cents as Wall Street gained more than 2% after Germany and France showed more commitment to shore up Europe’s banks against a Greek default.

 

At 6.30am, the local unit was trading at US99.56 cents, more than one US cent higher from 98.33 cents yesterday.

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