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Business news and updates: Apple expected to launch new iPhones on Sept 14

Dynamic Business brings you a daily rundown of the most recent business news and developments from Australia and around the world. Here’s the roundup for September 8:

Banks cut variable interest rates despite official interest rates on hold

The Reserve Bank has extended its bond-buying stimulus programme, which is now worth $4 billion per month, until at least mid-February. The move is in response to the economic effects of lockdowns in New South Wales, Victoria, and the ACT. 

Banks have been lowering variable and short-term fixed interest rates while rising longer-term fixed interest rates from record lows earlier this year.

Consumer inflation expectations hit a 33-month high

Consumer fears about rising living costs reappeared last week, with the ANZ/Roy Morgan measure of consumer inflation expectations over the next two years reaching a 33-month high of 4.7%. 

Households are concerned about rising fuel and food prices, as well as rising utility bills and annual insurance price increases, at a time when hours worked are being lost due to lockdowns. 

Resources minister flags strong future for coal beyond 2030 despite UN intervention

Keith Pitt, Australia’s Minister for Resources and Water, believes coal will be a major contributor to the Australian economy “well beyond” 2030. The remarks come in the middle of renewed calls from the United Nations for Australia to phase out coal by 2030. 

Minister Pitt said coal is a “crucial industry” whose future will not be decided by a “foreign body” that wants to close it down, costing thousands of jobs. 

Climate change, according to UN Special Envoy on Climate Change Selwin Hart, will affect the Australian economy if the world does not “rapidly” phase out coal. The Morrison government has previously stated that Australia is on track to achieve net-zero carbon emissions, but no timeline has been set.

Millions of unemployed Americans lose benefits 

Millions of unemployed Americans have lost their unemployment benefits, leaving only a few economic aid programmes for people who are still financially impacted by the year-and-a-half-old coronavirus outbreak. On Monday, two important programmes expired. 

One provided jobless assistance to self-employed and gig workers, while the other provided benefits to people who had been out of work for more than six months. 

In addition, the Biden administration’s $300 weekly additional unemployment compensation also expired on Monday.

Apple expected to launch new iPhones on Sept 14

Apple announced a special event on September 14 that most industry observers believe will be utilised to launch a new line of its flagship iPhones. 

Toyota to spend $13.5b to develop EV battery tech by 2030

Toyota Motor said it expects to invest more than $13.5 billion by 2030 on battery development and its battery supply chain, in an effort to gain a competitive advantage in the key automotive technology over the next decade.

India’s air passenger traffic increases: report

With the waning of the Covid-19 pandemic in most parts of the country and increasing capacity deployment, India’s domestic aviation traffic is showing signs of sustainable growth. 

Domestic air passenger traffic increased 31 per cent to 6.6 million in August, according to credit rating agency ICRA (5.1 million). However, the agency stated that demand remains low as passengers board aircraft mostly for necessary travel, according to the Press Trust of India.

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