Australia is set for negative economic growth in the March quarter following a surprise fall in company profits.
New figures show that company profits fell by 2% during the first three months of the year, with the mining sector suffering a 6.6% drop. The downturn, which has been partially blamed on the effects of Cyclone Yasi and the Queensland floods, is expected to push growth down by 0.4%, with annual growth standing at just 1.7%.
Garnaut calls for carbon bank
The Federal Government should set up an independent “carbon bank” to safeguard the integrity of its emissions trading scheme, according to its climate adviser Ross Garnaut.
Garnaut, who is set to deliver his report on climate policy to the Government today, said that a total of three independent bodies should be set up, to advise on emissions targets and to compensate export industries, as well as the carbon bank, which will ensure there is no fraud within the carbon market.
Allis denies carbon price campaign role
Meanwhile, Boost Juice founder Janine Allis has denied that she has signed up to a pro-carbon price campaign, despite her name appearing in national newspaper advertisements calling for a price on carbon to be introduced.
Allis told SmartCompany that her name was likely attached to the campaign via her association with the lobby group 1 Million Women, but that she will not put her name to the push without further information.
The Australian dollar was flat at 106.84 US cents. The US markets were closed overnight for the US Memorial Day public holiday.