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Australia & New Zealand

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  • Blackstone Pulls Out of Bidding for Coles: Reports Tuesday, 26 Jun 2007 | 10:13 PM ET

    Blackstone Group has pulled out of a consortium of three firms bidding for Australian retailer Coles Group, a source familiar with the situation said.

  • Babcock Revises $2.2 Billion NorthWestern Bid Tuesday, 26 Jun 2007 | 4:53 AM ET

    Australia's Babcock & Brown Infrastructure made a revised takeover offer for U.S. utility NorthWestern Energy after a regulator blocked its initial US$2.2 billion bid on concerns the deal was not in the interests of customers.

  • Australia's Smorgon Says Expert Backs Steel Deal Friday, 22 Jun 2007 | 5:06 AM ET

    Smorgon Steel said on Friday an independent expert's report had found a A$1 billion ($845 million) agreed takeover by OneSteel was in the best interest of shareholders.

  • Wesfarmers Set to Win Coles as Rival Seen Bowing Out Thursday, 21 Jun 2007 | 2:41 AM ET

    Australia's Wesfarmers $17 billion bid for retailer Coles Group looked set for success after a source said a rival group led by private equity firm Texas Pacific Group was likely to pull out.The group was set to walk away after talks with retailer Woolworths over a joint bid broke down, the source familiar with the discussion told Reuters on Thursday.

  • Olam Raises Offer for Queensland Cotton Thursday, 21 Jun 2007 | 2:29 AM ET

    Singapore agricultural commodities trader Olam International raised its offer for Queensland Cotton Holdings, prompting competing bidder Louis Dreyfus Commodities to sell its stake and end the bidding war for the Australian company.

  • Australia's Sigma Tops Rival Offer for Symbion Tuesday, 19 Jun 2007 | 3:23 AM ET

    Australia's Symbion Health said on Tuesday that Sigma Pharmaceuticals offered A$1.085 billion (US$912 million) for its consumer and pharmacy businesses, trumping a rival offer and potentially triggering a bidding war.

  • Singapore Telecommunications said on Monday its Optus unit has secured A$958 million (US$807 million) in funding from the Australian government for its broadband joint-venture.

  • Dollar Rises Above 123 Yen to 4-1/2-Year High Thursday, 14 Jun 2007 | 2:24 PM ET

    The dollar rose to a fresh 4-1/2-year high against the yen for a second straight day ahead of a Bank of Japan policy meeting and a report on U.S. consumer inflation that could determine whether U.S. Treasury yields extend a six-week climb.

  • Australia's Sigma Says Discussing Symbion Bid Wednesday, 13 Jun 2007 | 9:07 PM ET

    Australian drugs company Sigma Pharmaceuticals said on Wednesday it was in final talks with a potential partner on a counter bid for Symbion Health before a deadline of June 19.

  • Dollar Rallies Broadly on Strong Retail Sales Wednesday, 13 Jun 2007 | 3:31 PM ET

    The dollar climbed to a 4-1/2-year high against the yen, helped by data indicating U.S. retail sales growth in May was the highest since January 2006 which many investors took as a sign of a pickup in U.S. economic growth.

  • China's yuan jumped against the dollar in early trade on Wednesday to its highest since its 2005 revaluation after the central bank set a much higher reference rate for the Chinese currency.

  • Rio Tinto to Buy up to 34% of Ivanhoe Tuesday, 12 Jun 2007 | 11:35 PM ET

    Rio Tinto, the world's second-largest mining group, will increase its stake in Ivanhoe Mines once the Mongolian government approves Ivanhoe's Oyu Tolgoi project, a senior executive said on Tuesday.

  • Dollar Climbs to 2-Month High Against Euro Tuesday, 12 Jun 2007 | 5:00 PM ET

    The dollar climbed against the euro Tuesday to two-month highs as rising U.S. Treasury yields lured investors.

  • The New Zealand dollar tumbled from a 22-year high versus the U.S. dollar on Monday after selling by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand raised concerns about how much longer carry trades would continue.

  • New Zealand's competition regulator said on Friday it would not allow two suitors for The Warehouse Group to make takeover bids, sending shares in the retailer sliding as much as 8%.

  • Australian Dollar Soars to Fresh 17-Year High on Data Thursday, 7 Jun 2007 | 1:53 AM ET

    The Australian dollar rose to a fresh 17-year high on Thursday after the second straight month of stronger-than-expected domestic jobs data fuelled concerns the central bank might increase interest rates in the near term.

  • New Zealand's largest-listed retailer, The Warehouse, said on Thursday it has not had any takeover offers, denying reports Australia's Woolworths had made a $1.6 billion bid.

  • Australia Jobs Surge Again, Unemployment at New Low Wednesday, 6 Jun 2007 | 11:45 PM ET

    Australian employment surged way past all expectations for a second straight month in May, driving the jobless rate to 33-year lows and fuelling concerns the drum-tight labor market would eventually stoke inflation.

  • New Zealand's central bank raised interest rates on Thursday by a quarter of a point to 8%, the highest among industrialized countries, saying it was worried robust consumer demand would further fuel inflation.

  • Australia's Economic Growth Surges in First Quarter Tuesday, 5 Jun 2007 | 11:14 PM ET

    Australia's economy grew at its fastest pace in over three years last quarter as consumers spent freely and business investment surged, boding well for further growth in coming quarters.