Industry super funds have strengthened their position in the battle for
the retirement savings of five million Australians by dramatically
outperforming their commercial rivals over the past year, reports The Fin Review.
Researcher SuperRatings found that nine of the top ten performing funds
for the year to 30 June, after fees, were industry funds.

TheSMH reports that Australia’s commodity price roller-coaster has peaked, leaving
profits, investment and jobs at risk on the way back down. Research group Access Economics said a surge in
global commodity supply would push prices for nickel, lead and
copper down more than 30% over the next two years.

Unbridled demand from China and high oil prices have sent world
rubber prices soaring and earnings plunging for tyre makers and
other rubber users, reports The Age.

The Australian reports that Allco Equity Partners may offload takeover target Baycorp Advantage’s
debt collection operations, sparking consolidation of the fragmented
and volatile industry.

Also in The Oz, former National Australia Bank chief
executive Frank Cicutto marked his return to public business life yesterday as
head of a new Australian company, Run Property, specialising in
property management. By the end of August it hopes to have 5,000 properties under
management in Melbourne and Sydney, giving it the biggest rent-roll in
Australia.

It looks like Solomon Lew is stretching his tentacles
into the retail space. This time the very high profile and
ultra-fashionable brand Sass and Bide is on his shopping list, says Elizabeth Knight in the SMH. The deal may not have been secured just yet but insiders say
that it’s close and for between $5 million and $10 million Lew
could walk away with one of the big brands in fashion.

On Wall Street, US stocks were mixed in rocky trading overnight as
a batch of strong earnings contrasted with disappointing results at
DuPont and evidence of weakening consumer confidence. The Dow Jones
closed down 16.7 points at 10,579 – MarketWatch has a full report here.

Peter Fray

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