Finance News Update, what you need to know


The Australian dollar is lower following falls in commodity prices overnight.

At 0630 AEDT on Tuesday, the local unit was trading at 93.92 US cents, down from 94.02 cents on Monday.

And the Australian share market looks set to open lower despite a positive lead from Wall Street where The Dow and S&P 500 blasted to new records in early trade.

At 0648 AEDT on Tuesday, the December share price index futures contract was down eight points at 5,390.


FRANKFURT – The eurozone’s current account surplus narrowed to 13.7 billion euros ($A19.87 billion) in September from 17.9 billion euros in August, European Central Bank data shows.

PARIS – The US and British economies sped up slightly in the third quarter but expansion in several other economies slowed, leaving OECD-area growth at 0.5 per cent, the OECD says.

FRANKFURT – Too many European banks survived the financial crisis, the head of Europe’s banking regulator says.

MADRID – Bad loans at Spanish banks struck a new record high in September, official data shows, despite the near completion of a 41-billion-euro eurozone-financed bailout of the battered financial sector.

LISBON – Portugal’s government hopes to raise more than 400 million euros ($A580.09 million) via the sale of a 70 per cent stake in national mail company CTT – Correios de Portugal.

WARSAW – The bill from natural and weather disasters is nearly $US200 billion ($A213.81 billion) a year, four times higher than in the 1980s, the World Bank says.

VERSAILLES, France – Two executives at IKEA France are being questioned by police as part of a probe into allegations the company illegally used police files to spy on staff and customers, a judicial source said.

NEW YORK – Failed brokerage MF Global will pay $US1.2 billion ($A1.28 billion) in restitution plus a $US100 million penalty to resolve charges it took money from customer accounts as it collapsed in 2011, US regulators say.

ZURICH – Zurich Insurance Group said on Monday it would invest up to $US1 billion ($A1.07 billion) in projects to reduce the effects of climate change, marking the world’s biggest investment in so-called green bonds.