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Business news and updates: Daily roundup (July 31, 2021)

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 July 31: 

Emergency payments minister defends welfare payment exclusion

Senator McKenzie said the scheme for emergency payments was designed to supplement the incomes of working people and argued everyone left out could access a “strong and supportive” welfare system instead.

“When you look globally at the economic impacts on individuals we can be very, very glad we actually live in a country like Australia where we have such a strong social network of welfare payments,” she told ABC radio.

State and federal governments have ramped up support for individuals and businesses affected by Greater Sydney’s extended lockdown.

Under the current scheme, people who usually work 20 hours or more will get $750 per week and those who work less will get $450.

Small financial advisers pushes for revamp

Financial advisers operating as small businesses have pleaded with federal politicians to reconsider the extent of regulation being imposed on the industry in the wake of the Hayne banking royal commission.

Association of Financial Advisers national president Michael Nowak says financial advice has become increasingly costly to provide and more complex and is becoming out of reach for many Australians.

He told the parliamentary economics committee many advisers have closed their business, some suffering from mental health issues.

Australian miners leading from the front in powering global EV charge

Australian miners are in the driver’s seat to take advantage of the surge in demand for electric vehicles, being the world’s biggest producer and exporter of lithium.

With the biggest carmaker in the world, Volkswagen, committing to half its cars being electric by 2030, demand for lithium is set to continue soaring.

NSW coal mine approvals could undo progress on net-zero emissions targets: Analyst

The new analysis, commissioned by The Gate, suggests emissions from fossil fuel projects approved in the past three years will undo much of the government’s emissions reduction work and could undermine the state’s net-zero by 2050 target.

The NSW government’s Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap is expected to prevent the emission of 90 million tonnes of CO2 by 2030.

But emissions from eight mining developments approved since 2018 are expected to produce 89 million tonnes of CO2. 

The NSW government has approved eight coal and gas developments since March 2018, when the Independent Planning Commission (IPC) was established.

World pledges $4 billion to educate children amid the COVID-19 pandemic 

International governments and organisations have pledged more than $4 billion to educate 175 million children around the world.

The commitments came at a conference in London hosted by Britain, Kenya and funding organization the Global Partnership for Education.

Former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the donations put it [the partnership] on track to meet its goal of raising $5 billion over the next five years.

In addition, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who addressed the conference alongside Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, made girls’ education a flagship project of his Conservative government and is pushing to get 40 million more girls in school around the world by 2026.

Fiscal stimulus and vaccination drive lift United States’ economy above pre-pandemic level

The US economy grew strongly in the second quarter, pushing GDP past its pre-pandemic peak, as massive government aid and COVID-19 vaccinations fuelled consumer spending on goods and services.

Nikola founder Trevor Milton indicted for misrepresenting facts

Nikola founder Trevor Milton is facing federal charges of lying to investors, according to an indictment unsealed in New York.

The indictment alleges that from November 2019 through September 2020, Milton made false and misleading statements about “nearly all aspects of the business” of developing electric and hydrogen-powered trucks.

Robinhood closes in grim stock market debut

Robinhood Markets shares closed more than 8% lower at US$34.82 per share on their first day of trading, as many investors who used the popular trading app to participate in this year’s “meme” stock trading frenzy snubbed its initial public offering.

Facebook doubles profit but warns of grim outlook 

Facebook’s business is soaring, but the boom times may not last. Facebook reported revenue of nearly US$29.1 billion for the three months ended June 30, a 56% jump from the same period last year when online advertising took a hit as businesses grappled with Covid-19. 

The company also more than doubled its quarterly profit to almost US$10.4 billion, well above the US$8.7 billion analysts projected. 

However, the outlook for the rest of 2021 is not so sunny, CFO David Wehner said in a statement with the earnings report.

Dating app Bumble to give staff unlimited paid holiday

Dating app Bumble announced the company-wide week off that it implemented last month will become a permanent perk, now giving all workers the same two weeks’ paid vacation each year. 

Bumble said it was making the company-wide week-long vacation a permanent benefit to its 700 employees twice a year. In addition, the women-led dating app said its employees would now have unlimited paid vacation days with uniform minimums.

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