Economy

Push for 30% gender target on boards; Is iiNet slow because of Netflix?: Midday Roundup

Eloise Keating /

The number of female directors on ASX-listed company boards will jump from 20% to 30% in four years’ time, if a push by the Australian Institute of Company Directors is adopted.

The AICD also wants to extend the target to its members within smaller private firms and not-for-profit organisations, but has not set a target date for smaller companies.

“There is an undeniable case for gender diversity on boards. It is not only the right thing to do but the smart thing to do, because it means better business performance,” said AICD managing director and chief executive officer John Brogden in a statement.

“Numerous pieces of research demonstrate a positive link between the level of female representation on boards and improved corporate performance.”

The number of female directors on ASX200 boards has increased from 8.3% in 2009.

 

Is iiNet slow because of Netflix?

 

iiNet has blamed its slow internet speeds on the congestion of dozens of its links, according to Fairfax, believed to be associated with the launch of Netflix.

The reports suggest iiNet does not have enough “backhaul” cable capacity in its core network to cope with the demand of Aussies accessing the cult streaming service.

iiNet connections have been slowing down for users over the last week at around 4pm onwards.

The internet provider last week said Netflix accounted for 15% of its overall traffic, but a source familiar with iiNet told Fairfax the figure is much higher at peak periods.

“[iiNet] are hiding a lot and even publicly under-reporting the amount of Netflix traffic they are getting so people don’t connect the dots and realise Netflix has crippled the network,” the source told Fairfax.

 

Shares down on open

 

Aussie shares are trading slightly lower heading into lunchtime, despite making some initial gains in early trading.

Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets, said in a statement the falls in commodity prices, coupled with some insights into the thinking of the US Federal Reserve, had investors in a “cautiously optimistic” mood overnight.

“Supply induced falls in oil prices are good news for economies, and added to the positive tone of US trading,” McCarthy said.

“However, resource intense bourses such as the ASX may drop today as the downdrift spreads to commodities generally, despite a weaker US dollar. Copper and gold both fell, potentially snapping the appetite for materials as well as energy stocks and dragging down the recent best performers.”

The S&P/ASX 200 benchmark was down 6.2 points to 5954.5 points at 12.01pm AEST. On Wednesday, the Dow Jones closed 27.09 points higher, up 0.15% to 17902.5 points.

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Eloise Keating

Eloise Keating is the editor of SmartCompany. Previously, Eloise was news editor at Books+Publishing, the trade press for the Australian book industry.

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