No pay rises in 2020 as economic confidence in a ‘crater’

“People’s view of the economy is now sufficiently sad that they are now a risk,” said Mr Richardson. That lack of confidence can turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy as businesses and consumers hold back on spending, pulling back real-world economic growth. The report found retail has endured its deepest downturn since 1990, construction is shrinking at its fastest rate since 1999, and farmers and finance have had their worst period since the global financial crisis. The summer’s bushfires have only compounded those fears, putting the size of the first surplus…

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Morrison government set to announce NDIS overhaul

While there was support for the scheme across the community and all levels of government, the review found the legislation and rules underpinning the scheme were “unnecessarily rigid and do not allow flexibility”. NDIS Minister Stuart Robert said the Morrison government would use the findings to “update and clarify” the legislation and remove barriers to the NDIS, which costs about $22 billion a year to run. “The review’s findings reaffirmed what we have been hearing from participants, their families and carers and the disability sector – that while many participants…

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PM to announce bushfire support package for small businesses

Concessional loans – similar to those already announced for drought-stricken farmers – will be given to businesses interest free for 10 years. The loans of up to $500,000 would then come with an interest rate that would be set at 50 per cent of the 10-year government bond rate (currently about 0.6 per cent). Mr Morrison will also announce tax measures to boost the cashflow of small businesses, with taxpayers in affected postcodes to be given an extension until May 28 to lodge and pay business activity statements and income…

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What must fire our national conversation

Loading Which is the only way I can make sense of Albanese’s decision to announce on Sunday that Labor would abandon its previous emissions-reduction target. A new target will be announced later. I suppose it’s another in the “I’m not Bill Shorten” series. Voters want climate action but they remain wary of what Labor has been. Still, the timing is strange, and Albanese risks alienating some voters. The inside view will be that those votes are ones Labor can lose. Perhaps, but Labor leaders need to inspire, too, to win.…

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Veteran Liberal MP Kevin Andrews faces preselection battle

In the 2011 Australia Day honours he received a Commendation for Distinguished Service, for duty in action. Military veteran Keith Wolahan has been hailed as “the future” of the party. Mr Wolahan declined to comment when contacted by The Age, citing party rules prohibiting party members from commenting on preselection. However, a senior Liberal with close knowledge of the situation said it was very likely he would nominate. “The question for the party is whether it believes in renewal, especially when the future can be a decorated special forces war…

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Infrastructure spending blitz puts defence projects at risk

The struggle to attract and retain workers comes as Defence embarks on a building and acquisition program totalling more than $200 billion over the coming decade. At the same time, NSW and Victoria have committed to spending more than $120 billion on infrastructure projects over the next four years. Defence highlighted continuing shortages of skilled workers for its land programs because of competition from the Victorian government and the private companies involved in the large infrastructure projects in that state. The quarterly Defence report for June last year, which is…

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Best of cartoons, January 20, 2019

Best of cartoons, January 20, 2019 Skip to sections navigationSkip to contentSkip to footer 5 Images Our talented team of artists, illustrators and cartoonists give us their humorous version of the news of the day. January 19, 2020 — 5.05pm 1/5 Illustration: Matt Golding 2/5 Illustration: Matt Golding 3/5 Illustration: Andrew Dyson 4/5 Illustration: Matt Golding 5/5 Illustration: Simon Bosch Politics

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Labor leader Anthony Albanese flags dumping 45 per cent emissions target

“On climate change for example, one of the things that we’re likely to do is announce a longer term target before we announce … because by 2050 you’re likely to do that,” he said. “Do an AFL analogy: it’s a four-quarter game between 2019 and 2022, you’re asking me how it will play out in the final quarter. You’ve got to know what the three-quarter time score is. “Frankly, I think it was a mistake in 2019 to continue to say ‘well, we’ll do exactly what we’re doing in 2015″…

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Labor leader Anthony Albanese flags dumping 45 per cent emissions target

“On climate change for example, one of the things that we’re likely to do is announce a longer term target before we announce … because by 2050 you’re likely to do that,” he said. “Do an AFL analogy: it’s a four-quarter game between 2019 and 2022, you’re asking me how it will play out in the final quarter. You’ve got to know what the three-quarter time score is. “Frankly, I think it was a mistake in 2019 to continue to say ‘well, we’ll do exactly what we’re doing in 2015″…

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