Economy

SME confidence hits two-year high, Tom Waterhouse being sued, Inflation up in June quarter: Midday Roundup

Yolanda Redrup /

Small business confidence improved in the June quarter, rising seven points into the positive, according to figures released this morning.

The latest NAB quarterly SME survey found business confidence is the highest it’s been in two years and it’s now above the series average.

Confidence lifted across the majority of sectors, but the greatest rise came from the property sector, which was up 18 points and the construction sector which improved by 14 points.

Business conditions have also strengthened thanks to improvements in profitability and trading conditions.

Improvements in forward orders, employment conditions and investment conditions also signalled positive signs for the next quarter.

Tom Waterhouse being sued

Tom Waterhouse is back in the spotlight for the wrong reasons, and this time he’s being sued for allegedly withholding almost $250,000 from betting agency Bet247.

The Age is reporting a writ has been filed in the Supreme Court of Victoria from Bet247 alleging Waterhouse breached a deal made in 2011 and withheld $247,979 of profit since the deal was made until December 2012.

Bet247 is also seeking interest on the alleged unpaid profits.

Inflation up in the June quarter

The consumer price index rose 0.4% in the June quarter, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics figures released this morning.

The rise in price of Australian goods and services was a less-than-expected 0.5% and puts the annual rate at 2.4%.

The most significant rises were for medical and furniture, hospital service, and tobacco, up 4.8%, 3.4% and 3% respectively.

Shares up on open

Aussie shares were up this morning on the back of Wall Street gains overnight.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark was up 15.8 points to 5032.9 just after midday.

The materials sector was once again performing strongly, rising 62.5 points to 9308.8.

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