THE NEWS WRAP: US senators optimistic over potential debt deal

US senators are optimistic about reaching a deal that will avert a potential Treasury bond default by several months, following talks between leading Republican and Democrat lawmakers.


A meeting was originally proposed between Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, Republican Senator Mitch McConnell, President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner, and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi.


However, the meeting was postponed for further negotiations over whether to increase the nation’s $US16.7 trillion debt ceiling by enough to cover the nation’s borrowing needs until 2014.


Leading financial experts warn failing to raise the debt limit could put the US Treasury in a position where it is unable to meet loan repayments, causing it to default.


China slams US over debt crisis


The Chinese government has lashed out at the ongoing debt crisis in the US, with a commentary by state news agency Xinhua urging other nations to “de-Americanise” the world.


“The cyclical stagnation in Washington for a viable bipartisan solution over a federal budget and an approval for raising debt ceiling has again left many nations’ tremendous dollar assets in jeopardy and the international community highly agonised,” the statement says.


“Instead of honouring its duties as a responsible leading power, a self-serving Washington has abused its superpower status and introduced even more chaos into the world by shifting financial risks overseas.”


iSelect says CEO resignation due to ASIC investigation


The chairman of insurance broker iSelect, Damien Waller, has hosed down speculation the sudden resignation of chief executive Matthew McCann came as the result of an investigation by an Australian Securities and Investments Commission.


“It was particularly around operating priorities in the business. Matt had a view around how to grow the business via acquisition, whereas the board was much more focused in organic growth,” Waller says.


“The timing of the ASIC trading update, which is driven by ASIC, and the timing of Matt’s resignation, [are] completely unrelated. They’re not linked together in any way.”




The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 0.42% to 15301.26. The Aussie dollar is at US94.89 cents.


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