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ASIC Investigate Banks over Interest Rate Rigging

February 15th, 2016
Australia's next financial scandal may be brewing, with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) currently investigating the big four banks regarding interbank interest rate rigging. The corporate regulator has been looking into fixing since 2012, with banks tight lipped as investigations enter an advanced stage. With Commission chairman Greg Medcraft recently telling the banks to "Plead guilty", it will be interesting to see how this case progresses over the next few months.

Back in 2012, the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) was found to have been systematically manipulated by staff at some of the world's biggest financial institutions. Soon after, ASIC started investigating Australia's key benchmark interest rate, the Bank Bill Swap Rate (BBSW), looking for similar manipulation. Having already secured voluntary contributions of $1.6 million from Royal Bank of Scotland, and $1 million from UBS and BNP Paribas, the big four banks are now in ASIC's sights.

ANZ suspended seven traders in the early stages of the investigation back in November 2014, with Australia's other big banks yet to make a move. In a comment to the Sydney Morning Heral [...]

Melbourne Overtakes Sydney

February 12th, 2016
Property price growth in Melbourne is the strongest in Australia for the first time in three years, with price growth in the Victorian capital overtaking Sydney on a monthly and yearly basis. While both markets are slowing down from the frenetic pace of the last few years, the Melbourne market has more room to move before it levels out. Brisbane and Adelaide posted modest annual growth, with the resource-focused cities of Perth and Darwin recording monthly and annual price declines.

Acco [...]

Marie Kondo and the Art of Decluttering

February 5th, 2016

Marie Kondo is a big name in her native Japan, with the self-described “crazy tidying fanatic” now taking the entire world by storm with the publication of her second English book “Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up”. Recently named one of the 100 most influential people of 2015 in Time magazine, Kondo’s […]

Exercise and Nutrition Should Always Be Combined

February 1st, 2016

Your body needs good quality fuel and proper maintenance in order to function effectively, with nutrition and exercise meeting these criteria. Good health is all about balance and consistency, and when it comes to nutrition and fitness, you really can’t have one without the other. If you don’t eat well, your workouts will not be effective, and if you don’t […]

Where is Planet Nine?

January 29th, 2016

According to astronomers, a planet the size of Neptune is lurking somewhere in the outer reaches of the solar system beyond Pluto. Currently known as “Planet Nine” or “Planet X”, this unseen planet is said to orbit the sun every 15,000 years. While the presence of Planet Nine has been inferred from a peculiar clustering of six previously known objects […]

Confidence Forecasts and the Property Market

January 22nd, 2016

Consumer and business confidence in Australia continues to fall, with overall consumer sentiment decreasing for the fourth consecutive week to reach its lowest point since the appointment of Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister. Falling confidence is mostly due to losses on the stock market and ongoing concerns about China’s economy, with reduced confidence also having a negative effect on the […]

Top Buyers’ Markets

January 18th, 2016

People in the market for a new home are looking forward to a great year ahead, with Australian markets starting to favour buyers for the first time in four years. According to the latest Commonwealth Bank CoreLogic RP Data Home Buyers Index, the Brisbane and Darwin markets have already shifted in favour of buyers, with other cities likely to join […]

Gadgets from CES 2016

January 15th, 2016

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is over for another year, with startups and established companies unveiling all the latest in the world of tech. CES 2016 had televisions, helicopters, and everything in-between, from already-on-the-shelves products through to gadgets that may never get a commercial release. Let’s take a look at some of the best – and some of the weirdest […]

Making Your Home Healthier

January 8th, 2016

Everyone wants their home to be as safe and healthy as possible. While New Year’s resolutions are often based around renovations and backyard spruce-ups, sometimes it’s important to take care of the space you’ve already got. According to Nicole Bijlsma, building biologist and founder of the Australian College of Environmental Studies, “In terms of health, we look at our diet […]

Loneliness Is Bad For Your Health

December 28th, 2015

Extreme loneliness is bad for your health, with chronic social isolation shown to increase the chances of disease and early death. Whether you’re a teenager, a retiree, or somewhere in-between, people without healthy social connections are at greater risk of developing inflammation and obesity among other risk factors. Time and time again, studies have shown a connection between a healthy […]

The Government’s Innovation Plan

December 14th, 2015

The Australian government are getting excited about the future, with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announcing a $1.1 billion plan to promote business-based research, development, and innovation. The new plan will attempt to kick-start an “ideas boom” by strengthening ties and communication between the business community and academia. With millions of dollars flowing into the CSIRO, new tax incentives, and changes […]