Prime Minister Julia Gillard is fighting to keep proposed media reforms alive, following an interview on the ABC’s Lateline program where independent Tony Windsor expressed concerns about the package.
“I don’t think the numbers are there for a great portion of this to get through,” Windsor said.
Meanwhile, Fairfax media reports that the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, and Foreign Affairs Minister Bob Carr have shifted their support away from Prime Minister Julia Gillard towards leadership rival Kevin Rudd.
Cyprus crisis shakes Australian markets
The government of Cyprus has postponed a vote on a controversial tax on savings, which forms part of its austerity package, leading to more than 2% being wiped off the value of Australian shares.
The vote would have ratified a deal struck between Cyprus, the IMF, the European Central Bank and other lenders to levy a once-off tax on all bank deposits of 6.75% for amounts up to €100,000 ($A124,000) and 9.9% for deposits above €100,000 as part of a bailout package.
ASIC report says high speed trading risk is overstated
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission has released its report into computerised high speed trading.
While the report from the corporate regulator recommends some reforms, it also finds that the impact of the practice in Australia has largely been overstated.
“There is a belief by some that high-frequency trading is manipulative in a legal sense, or at least predatory in nature, and there is a perception that high-frequency traders uniformly have less regard for market integrity. That perception is not supported by our study,” the report states.
In New York, the S&P500 is down 0.64% to 1550.65. The Aussie dollar is up to US1.0391 cents.