Insurance giant QBE has announced it plans to cut jobs in the aftermath of a series of severe weather events in Australia and the US.
The news comes after the insurer announced a calendar year profit of $761 million for 2012, significantly below its guidance figure of $820 million, as a result of payouts from hurricane Sandy and the ongoing drought across the US mid-west.
Following the announcement, chief executive John Neal has confirmed plans to cut 700 staff from across the company’s global operations as part of a plan to concentrate its global back office operations in Manilla.
Virgin won’t guarantee Tiger fleet growth due to industry volatility
Virgin Australia says it cannot give an “ironclad guarantee” it will triple the size of the Tiger Airways fleet by 2018 following a takeover of the Singaporean airline, as required by competition regulators, citing concerns of industry volatility.
“You can’t give an ironclad guarantee on something like that because you just don’t know what’s around the corner,” Virgin Australia chief executive John Borghetti said.
The news came after Virgin Australia announced its half-year profits have fallen by 56% year-on-year to $23 million.
General Electric to invest in Australian wind farms
Diversified conglomerate GE has announced plans to invest in new wind power infrastructure in Australia.
“We are having discussions with third-party financial institutions about partnering in ways that will help get wind projects developed and other important energy projects,” global vice-chairman John Rice told The Australian.
The news comes amid speculation GE is on the shortlist of AGL’s partnering process for the construction of its Stockyard Hill wind farm project near Ballarat in Victoria.
In New York, the S&P500 was 0.44% higher at 1494.45 during recent trade. The Aussie dollar is down to US102.28 cents