Coalition to reveal $40 billion in savings; Trade balance swings to deficit: Midday Roundup

The Coalition will release its long-awaited costings, which will reportedly show up to $40 billion in predicted savings over the next four years.

Coalition treasury spokesman Joe Hockey has been reported as preparing to announce around $40 billion in savings, with some new spending measures targeted at productivity and infrastructure, while others are dedicated to cutting waste and regulation.

Coalition assistant treasury spokesman Mathias Cormann told ABC Television this morning there was no uneasy feelings about releasing the costings so late in the campaign.

“We’ve gone through a proper, methodical, structured process,” he said. “You can only release the full tally of your policy costings after you have released all your policies.”

However, in an interview on ABC Radio this morning, Treasurer Chris Bowen warned the policies might end up being nothing more than a “dodgied-up spreadsheet”.

Trade balance swings to deficit

Australia’s trade balance moved to a deficit in July, according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The figures show the national trade deficit for the month was a seasonally adjusted $765 million.

This figure comes after the June figure was downwardly revised to a seasonally-adjusted surplus of $243 million.

Shares fall as Syria, election uncertainty continues

The sharemarket has opened lower this morning, with investors continue to battle uncertainty in the face of a federal election this weekend, along with the looming possibility the United States will prepare air strikes against Syria.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 38 points or 0.7% to 5,123.3 at 11.50 AEST, while in the United States, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 96 points or 0.6% to 14,930.9.


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