BRIEFS

POWER

POWER

Charges up

Some electricity companies appear to be taking advantage of the carbon price to increase charges to large commercial and industrial businesses, a report shows. Research by energy efficiency consultant Big Switch Projects into the effect of the July 1 carbon price on power bills found price rises of as much as 53 per cent since midyear.

ENERGY

PNG deal

Shares in oil and gas producer Oil Search rose more than 3 per cent after it signed five licensing agreements with gas company Total to operate in Papua New Guinea. The deal, which has been in the pipeline for the past six months, also pushed shares in partner Kina Petroleum almost 7 per cent higher.

MEDIA

Jobs to go

The publisher of Britain's Guardian and Observer newspapers looks set to make compulsory job cuts after too few staff came forward for its voluntary redundancy package. Guardian News & Media has said it needs to cut up to 100 of its 650 editorial staff to make savings of #7 million a year.

DEBT

Nine proposal

Nine Entertainment boss David Gyngell put a proposal to debt holders yesterday in an attempt to break the impasse that could lead to the collapse of the debt-laden group if a restructure is not agreed to. It is believed no agreement was reached but talks are expected to continue. It is the first time Nine Entertainment's management has put forward its own plan to try to reach a compromise between the two different classes of lenders.

SUPER

Blocking move

The Coalition will oppose a key plank of Labor's plan to introduce no-frills superannuation, arguing the changes could transfer retirement savings to higher-cost funds. Coalition MPs yesterday raised concerns about a plan to require all default super balances to be transferred to no-frills MySuper funds by 2017.

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