THE NEWS WRAP: Australian dollar breaks through 104 US cents
In a submission to the Productivity Commission into retailing, the National Retail Association said that 12% of retailers have lost more than of their turnover to foreign websites. The NRA obtained the figures via a survey of 156 SME retailers.
ASIC to ramp up liquidator scrutiny
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission is set to ramp up its insolvency division amid growing complaints from businesses, creditors and investors about liquidators.
The increased surveillance of liquidators follows the near-record 14,385 insolvency appointments last year, with rising complaints over liquidators’ excessive fees, conflicts and long delays.
US unemployment drops
Unemployment in the US has hit a two-year low, raising hopes that the country’s economy is finally beginning to climb out of its malaise.
Figures from the US Department of Labor showed that unemployment fell to 8.8% in March, with the rate of growth in manufacturing the highest since May 2004.
The Dow Jones industrial average edged up by 56.99 points to 12,376.72. For the first time since it started trading in 1983, the Australian dollar broke through 104 US cents, standing at $US1.0403 this morning.