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Independent Financial Review - 6 September 2006

Independent Financial Review - 6 September 2006

A quick preview of what's running in today's (Wednesday 6 Sept.) Independent Financial Review.

Eric Watson's $300 mln blunder in Britain

Figures disclosed quietly to the stock exchange show that multi-millionaire Eric Watson has lost $300 million through his disastrous foray with PRG into British electrical goods chain Powerhouse. This is $100 million more than he has previously revealed and comes on top of news that PRG has had to give back $18.5 million as a refund to GE Finance over the sale of 80,000 small loans to the American giant. Denise McNabb reports

Government set to soften controversial foreign investment tax

The select committee considering the government's controversial foreign investment tax is set to water down the plan, sources tell the Independent Financial Review. The committee is likely to recommend a much softer 3% tax on average investment values rather than an 85% tax on unrealised capital gains. Tim Donoghue reports.

Commerce Commission to lose control over power lines companies

The government is considering shifting price control of Transpower and lines companies such as Vector to the Electricity Commission from the Commerce Commission. This would be a slap in the face for Paula Rebstock's Commission just weeks after she outraged Vector and shareholders by taking price control of Vector. The Electricity Commission must carry out government policy encouraging investment, while the more independent Commerce Commission only has to "give regard to" government policy. Nick Stride reports.

Elsewhere, Jenni McManus criticises the Securities Commission over its Feltex investigation and Denise McNabb explains what the latest finance sector regulatory shakeup means for investors. We editorialise that the government is not doing enough to toughen up our slack securities regulation and we detail how telecoms firms here are dealing with the threat - or opportunity - of mobile porn.


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I Sing The Highway Electric: Charge Net NZ To Connect New Zealand

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Watch This Space: Mahia Rocket Lab Launch Site Officially Opened

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Marketing Rocks!
Ig Nobel Award Winners Assess The Personality Of Rocks

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Nurofen Promotion: Reckitt Benckiser To Plead Guilty To Misleading Ads

Reckitt Benckiser (New Zealand) intends to plead guilty to charges of misleading consumers over the way it promoted a range of Nurofen products, the Commerce Commission says. More>>


Half A Billion Accounts, Including Xtra: Yahoo Confirms Huge Data Breach

The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. More>>


Rural Branches: Westpac To Close 19 Branches, ANZ Looks At 7

Westpac confirms it will close nineteen branches across the country; ANZ closes its Ngaruawahia branch and is consulting on plans to close six more branches; The bank workers union says many of its members are nervous about their futures and asking ... More>>

Interest Rates: RBNZ's Wheeler Keeps OCR At 2%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2 percent and said more easing will be needed to get inflation back within the target band. More>>


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