EDITOR'S PICKS

In this week's essential reading guide Bartholomeusz deconstructs the NBN rollout plan, Hartwich calls out GM hypocrisy, and Gottliebsen and Kohler launch Productivity Spectator.

This week we welcomed new writers Xavier Rizos and Andrew Catsaras to the Business Spectator community, watched a new Queensland government get swept into power, launched Productivity Spectator, and kept one eye on the unfolding News Corp saga.

NBN may go down to the wire
Stephen Bartholomeusz
The plan for the NBN unveiled today doesn't necessarily mean the rollout will be completed, and even assuming it is there are likely cost blowouts and lower-than-anticipated returns looming.

Carmaker triumph or GM hypocrisy?
Oliver Marc Hartwich
It's a product of public relations that Australians believe every government supports its own car industry, and looking at General Motors' ruthless cost-cutting of its European brands puts even more focus on its intentions in Australia.

Media's online revenue chasm
Stephen Bartholomeusz
A new report from the Boston Consulting Group has found a $24 billion dollar gulf between the value people put on online media, and what they actually pay – a challenge to the business models of publishers everywhere.

A sting too far for News Corp?
Stephen Bartholomeusz
The sheer ugliness of the behaviour of News employees in the UK, now linked to Australia thanks to a cache of emails published by the AFR, could be the final straw for frustrated investors.

A cold Huawei play with icy ramifications
Justin O'Brien
An overcautious ASIO and Gillard government have ensured, by halting Huawei's role in the NBN, that Australia has missed a golden opportunity to instil higher standards of corporate governance in this 'Asian Century'.

Australia's crushing climate trap
Alan Kohler
With a commitment to reduce rising greenhouse gas emissions both the ALP and the Coalition are boxed into a costly corner, and soon we'll have to decide whether we really want to reduce emissions or just pay other countries to do so.

Fairfax paper cuts are going to hurt
Leon Gettler
The decision by Fairfax to deliberately reduce its print circulation to focus on digital could be a costly one, and highlights the biggest tension facing business today – the fight to change faster or slow things down.

A country that makes things...badly
Stephen Grenville
While debate rages over the value of subsidising the Australian automotive manufacturing industry, perhaps more people should be questioning just why we're thinking about building submarines.

A productivity initiative Australia needs
Robert Gottliebsen
The launch of Productivity Spectator opens up a new way of thinking about productivity, with a wealth of ideas to lift revenue and market share and improve business and government service.

Lew's grave mining boom warning
Xavier Rizos
A new study from the Australia Institute backs up Solomon Lew's claims that the Reserve Bank is mishandling the mining boom, and argues that one non-mining job could be lost for every two mining jobs created.

Labor 'annihilation' a bridge too far
Andrew Catsaras
Once again we are hearing pundits pronouncing the death of a major political party. But history shows that in our two-party system, the heavily wounded always pull through.

Nine things to know about Campbell Newman
Paul Barry
The man who toppled Anna Bligh will have to call on all his ambition and self-belief to deal with hefty problems of his own, including the expectations of Clive Palmer.

Platinum's global picks
Karen Maley
Platinum Asset Management's Kerr Neilson explains where he sees value in Asia and Europe, why China worries may grow in the next six months and how the Australian property game has changed.

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