Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Sat 17 Nov 2012



The Northern Territory news Sat 17 Nov 2012

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

Publisher name

Nationwide News Pty. Limited

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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Nationwide News Pty. Limited



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www.ntnews.com.au Saturday, November 17, 2012. NT NEWS. 33 P U B : NTNE-WS-DA-TE:17-NGE:33 CO-LO-R: C-M Y-K ntnews.com.aul l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l BUSINESS Whitehaven cuts jobs, scales back ops MELBOURNE: Whitehaven Coal has cut 10 staff including its business development manager, Peter Kane, a former chief executive for Nathan Tinklers Aston Resources, in response to ongoing tough market conditions. The company cited the need to cut costs in a strug gling coal market and remain competitive for the decision to scale back its business development unit and Brisbane presence. It has exploration assets in Queensland. Whitehaven is not immune to the continued decline in global coal prices and like all coal companies we are having to make difficult decisions in order to ensure we have an appropriate cost base, Whitehaven managing director Tony Haggarty said. A very small number of technical services staff will remain in a relocated and smaller Brisbane office to ensure exploration projects are maintained and obligations to joint venture partners are met. There have been widespread job losses in coal mining in NSW and Queensland this year. Whitehaven shares closed 5c weaker at $2.74, approaching record lows. Kathmandu sales on climb MELBOURNE: Clothing and camping equipment store Kathmandu has surprised the market with a dramatic jump in sales, in a positive sign for retailers approaching Christmas. The Australasian company posted a 19.5 per cent boost in sales ($66.9 million) from its 126 stores for the 15 weeks leading up to November 11 compared with the same period last year. Same-store or comparable sales excluding new stores grew by 14.3 per cent during the period compared with 7.6 per cent in the same period last year. The companys shares closed 6c up, at $1.41. Bonus gives bank boss $10m salary By STEPHEN McMAHON Mike Smith SYDNEY: ANZs top banker Mike Smith has become the $10 million man, earning the biggest pay packet of the Big Four bank bosses on the back of an increased cash bonus. The surge in bank pay comes as the International Monetary Fund signals more interest-rate cuts may be needed as consumer confidence remains stagnant and households struggle with debt levels as the global outlook darkens again. After delivering a record $6 billion cash profit to share holders, the ANZ chief executive yesterday was rewarded with a significant lift in his cash bonus. Mr Smiths cash payment including base pay and short-term cash incentives was $5.17 million. His base pay stayed steady at $3.15 million in line with the freeze on executive salaries. But his cash bonus, share options and incentive payments rose giving him a total payday of $10.1 million. This was up 4 per cent from the $9.7 million the ANZ bank boss earned last year. His top rival, Gail Kelly at Westpac, pocketed $9.6 million in the 12 months to September 30, of which $5.3 million was paid in cash. Commonwealth Bank chief executive Ian Narev was paid $5.7 million and the details of NAB chief executive Cameron Clynes pay will be released on Monday. But after a sharp drop in the banks full-year profit, his pay is not expected to rise too much above the $5.3 million he got last financial year. This came as an IMF report on the health of the Australian economy shows the country is not immune from fu ture intensification of the European debt crisis. Treasurer Wayne Swan said the assessment was a big tick for the Australian economy. But the report warned further cuts to interest rates may be warranted if the global economic slowdown deteriorates. The uncertainty led to the biggest proportion of borrowers in September locking in a fixed rate home loan for four years. Vodafone chief laments subsidies SYDNEY: Vodafone Australia chief executive Bill Morrow has opened a new front in the third-ranked telcos battle for survival, targeting government subsidies given to market leader Telstra. Mr Morrow took aim at $880 million in government subsidies received by Telstra under the Universal Service Obligation since 1998, and at $450 million in other subsidies to build networks in remote areas. In a speech to the American Chamber of Commerce he said uncontestable taxpayer support to the incumbent telecommunications industry leader stifled competition. This is not an issue about whinging and whining and special favours for Vodafone, he said. Shareholders dont want their cash converted to bosss bonus By KIM CHRISTIAN PERTH: The head of Cash Converters says a first strike delivered against the companys pay report yesterday is peculiar, given shareholders approved executive share bonuses two years ago. More than 31 per cent of shareholder votes were cast against Cash Converters remuneration report at the companys Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Perth. The move paves the way for a board spill of the secondhand goods dealer and loan provider, if at least the same percentage of shareholders again vote against the report next year. Managing director Peter Cumins said he was surprised by the backlash because shareholders had voted in favour of the companys long term incentive plan at the companys AGM in 2010. In fiscal 2012 Mr Cumins received a total pay package of $2.1 million, including $1.2 million in shares. If somebody had come to us and said were against this, we could at least have explained it, Mr Cumins said. But it was really peculiar that this was approved by shareholders. He believes two nominee companies voted against the pay report after receiving advice. Companies which do research and make recom mendations to these nominee companies really dont think it through, he said. Its all based on mathematical metrics. Cash Converters annual report said Mr Cumins bonus was for achieving a better than forecast profit result. The Aussie dollar has jumped to a higher level recently largely thanks to foreign central banks buying the currency Dollar a few cents too much SYDNEY: The Australian dollar is overvalued by as much as 10 US cents and is likely to stay that way for the next couple of years. Since it was first floated in 1983, the Australian dollars fate has been closely linked to commodity prices. When the price of goods like iron ore, copper and coal go up, so does the Aussie dollar. When they go down, it goes down as well. That still happens, according to ANZ foreign exchange strategist Andrew Salter, but the Aussie dollar has jumped to a higher level recently largely due to foreign central banks buying the currency. He says the dollar, currently worth more than 103 US cents, is overvalued to the tune of about 10 US cents. I actually think the fair value of the Aussie dollar is somewhere between 90 and 95 US cents, based on commodity prices and interest rate differentials, he said. The dollar has remained stubbornly above the 100 US cent mark. We see it lasting for a long period of time, Mr Salter said.