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THE NEWS WRAP: Australia in danger of jumping off a “growth cliff”: NAB chairman

Monday, 19 November 2012 | By Oliver Milman

The US has its ‘fiscal cliff’– but Australia has its own version, according to the chairman of NAB, who has claimed the country is set for a “growth cliff” following the end of the resources boom.

 

The Australian Financial Review reports that Michael Chaney, who, pertinently, is also chairman of Woodside Petroleum, believes that growth will slow to less than 2.5% after 2015.

 

Chaney blames excessive regulations on business and inflexible industrial relations laws for this slowdown, although there is little detail from him on how innovative new businesses not in the resources industry should be fostered in the aftermath.

 

Australia has skilled labour surplus: Report

 

Australia has a surplus of skilled employees, contrary to popular wisdom that the nation lacks skilled labour, according to a new report.

 

Clarius Group's Skills Index for September shows a surplus of 19,500 skilled personnel across 20 different sectors. This compares to an excess of 2,300 people in June.

 

The report adds that generation Y workers are now more appreciative of their jobs, having seen many of their colleagues made redundant in recent times.

 

Forrest looks to slay evil dragon of mining tax

 

Andrew Forrest, the billionaire founder of Fortescue Metals, has raised an apocalyptic vista of his business’ legal challenge of the mining tax, painting it as an epic struggle between good and evil.

 

Forrest, who was part of a coalition of mining executives who bravely managed to water down former prime minister Kevin Rudd’s mining tax with the aid of a $22 million advertising campaign, claims that the latest incarnation of the tax is unconstitutional.

 

"I really can't add anything further but to say it should be challenged, and all it takes for evil to conquer is for good people to do nothing, and we've decided to not be one of the ones to do nothing," Forrest thundered to Radio National.

 

Markets

 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 45.93 points, or 0.4%, to 12,588.31 on Friday. The Australian dollar rose to US103.42 cents.