Emirates cops $10 million fine for price fixing

The Federal Court in Sydney today ordered Emirates to pay a total of $10 million in penalties for engaging in cartel conduct.

The decision comes just a week before the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s main proceedings are due to commence against a number of international airlines for alleged cartel conduct.

The proceedings relate to alleged price fixing of fuel and other surcharges and Emirates is the 10th airline to settle in these proceedings.

“This settlement with Emirates brings the total penalties ordered in Australia against international airlines involved in the cartel to $68 million,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

“These are the highest penalties to have ever been ordered in an ACCC investigation.”

Commonwealth Bank cuts home loan rates to 22-year low

The Commonwealth Bank has cut interest rates on its fixed-rate home loans to a 22-year low.

The bank also has promised to beat the advertised fixed rates of its three major rivals.

Rates on new fixed-rate mortgages, for one to five years, have been reduced by up to 30 basis points.

Interest rates now range from 5.39% to 5.69% , which are the lowest offered by CBA for more than 22 years, according to the bank.

Shares rise on good US labour data

The Australian sharemarket has opened slightly higher this morning despite a weak lead in the United States, even though new labour data shows the number of Americans claiming jobless benefits has fallen.

The benchmark S&P/aSX200 index was up 8.4 points or 0.2% to 4,491.9, while in the United States the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 18 points or 0.1% to 13,326.4.

UBS calls for trading regulations

UBS has called for stricter regulations on high-frequency trading, according to a new report in the Australian Financial Review.

“There are some things that we support which aren’t necessarily great for our business, but we think they are actually right for the market structure,” UBS co-head of equities, Gary Head, told the publication.

“Retail volumes are down for a number of reasons… but fear around market structure is creating fear that shouldn’t exist, as the perception is worse than reality.”


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