THE NEWS WRAP: Gina Rinehart emerges as a 10% shareholder in Ten Network

Australia’s richest woman, Gina Rinehart, has shocked the business world by emerging as a 10% shareholder in television group Ten Network. Rinehart, who inherited mining company Hancock Prospecting from her father Lang Hancock, is best known for her interests in iron ore and coal. But a statement from Hancock Prospecting says the company has been looking to invest in the media sector for some time.

 

Government struggles to get NBN bill through Senate

 

The Government has just three Parliamentary sitting days to get a key part of its NBN legislation through Parliament, with independent senators Nick Xenophon and Steve Fielding yet to give their backing to a bill that would allow the Government to force the separation of Telstra’s wholesale and retail arms, and sign of an $11 billion infrastructure deal with the telco giant. If the Government can’t get the bill through the Senate in the next three days it is warning the NBN project will face cost blowouts.

 

QR National makes impressive debut

 

Queensland rail and freight operator QR National has shrugged off the doubters to make an impressive debut on Australian Securities Exchange. The company, which floated at $2.55 a share, finished its first day of trade up 4.3% to $2.65.

 

While many Australian investors had questioned whether the $4.6 billion float was good value, strong interest from overseas investors ensured the company got its life as a listed company off to a good start.

 

The markets

 

The turmoil in Ireland continues to rock global markets, with Wall Street’s Dow Jones Industrial Average falling over 1% last night, on news that Ireland’s Government could collapse before it has passed a set of austerity measures that are a key condition of its bailout from the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

 

The Australian dollar slipped under US99c to US98.19c on fears that the fallout from Ireland’s problems could spread around the globe.

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