Finance News

There’s no business like snow business!

Posted on Monday, August 12, 2019
Over the last 12 months Australia’s ski fields have been a significant contributor to economic growth, with the visitor economy soaring to $30 billion, reflecting growth of 20%. The double-digit rise from visitor and local spending across Victorian and New South Wales snowfields created the equivalent of more than 10,000 full time jobs. And yet, due to the perception of snow sports as a luxury holiday pastime, these booming economies are not being credited for their success through government assistance to support their ongoing growth. Yesterday I was fortunate to speak with Lottie Grimus, who together with the late Hans Grimus, is a pioneer of the snow sports industry in Australia. She highlighted that behind the leisure and luxury there are huge challenges for seasonal snow businesses, that require astute management in order to ensure they don’t go bust. Lottie highlighted that snow businesses essentially run like farms, as they need to take a lot of the same variables into a ... Read the rest of entry »

The federal tax nobody is talking about

Posted on Monday, August 5, 2019
The latest inflation figures are out and with inflation up 1.6% in June, I expect there’ll be no movement on interest rates by the RBA this month. But along with the inflation rate being up, new figures from the ABS show a sleeping giant that’s driving the cost of living and the cost of doing business through the roof – and nobody is talking about it. The latest ABS figures show the cost of petrol is up 10% on average over the past quarter. That’s a huge impost on businesses and families. The increase is even more dire in some rural and regional areas, where fuel costs have increased by up to 20%, slugging farmers, truckies and tradies. Fuel costs are a huge burden for many businesses, with spikes like this impacting budgets and balance sheets. Of course, the cost to business is inevitably being passed on to consumers, who are left with no choice but to cop the increased fuel cost, as well as the increased cost of purchasing anything from a business that also has to pay more for f ... Read the rest of entry »

My challenge to the insurance industry

Posted on Monday, July 29, 2019
Shoplifting – or as it should be called, retail theft – costs Australian businesses $3.3 billion every year. That’s a staggering amount. And there’s very little business owners can do about it. I believe there’s been a shift in what people are stealing that has triggered this peak in retail theft. Previously, a crook would break into your house and steal cash or jewellery. Now with the demise of cash, thieves are looking for small, high value items that they can hawk quickly for a cash return. This has led to a recent spike in thefts of things like mobile phones and iPads from retail stores, which business owners have little choice but to write-off as a loss. My challenge to the insurance industry is to come up with a product that will allow businesses to cost-effectively insure against theft. Currently, theft insurance is impractical, given that each stolen item equates to an individual claim, and the cost of premiums and excesses often far outweigh the value of the stolen ... Read the rest of entry »

The real cost of chucking a sickie

Posted on Monday, July 22, 2019
There’s nothing more Australian than chucking a sickie after a big day at the races or a massive grand final weekend. But the cost to employers is massive and debilitating. Employee absenteeism costs Australian business $44 billion a year. That’s around $3500 per worker per annum, or around $570 per sickie. 87% of employers believe at least one employee in their business will take a day off after a sporting event each year. This is disastrous for the employer, but stacked up all those unplanned absences are also disastrous for the economy. However, most small business owners have a pretty tight relationship with their staff. When you work closely together every day, it follows that you’ll know a fair bit about each other, and what you like to do in your spare time. So instead of putting your staff in a situation where they feel they need to lie to you in order to recover from staying up all night to watch the soccer world cup or the Tour de France, why not give them the time off that th ... Read the rest of entry »

When the cashless society goes wrong

Posted on Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Around 2:30pm last Thursday, businesses across Australia were crippled by yet another Telstra outage. This time it affected credit card payments, some bank accounts and EFTPOS payments. Customers were left unable to pay for their goods and services, and businesses were left out of pocket as they couldn’t take payments. Of course, the majority of people no longer carry cash. The outage, which was blamed on a higher-than-usual level of traffic in NSW, is estimated to have cost retailers $100 million nationwide. So what can your business do to safeguard against such losses? Truth is, there aren’t a lot of options, but there are a couple. One option, which was raised by caller Louise on last night’s episode of Let’s Talk Business, is to have a system in place where you take down all of your customer’s details on a form, get them to sign it, then process the payment manually when the system comes back online. Another option would be to look at systems like Afterpay and Zip Pay, ... Read the rest of entry »

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