Australian companies are increasingly turning to the retail bond market to directly obtain part of their financing requirments, according to industry newsletter, Dealogic.

Dealogic reports that the Australian debt market is now the source of 8.3% of the bonds issued by Australian non-financial sector companies.  This compares with only 6% of total bonds in calendar 2010 and only 3.5% in 2009.

Major companies including Woolworths are using their strong balance sheets and high public profile to raise money at a lower rate than the banks are able to provide.

The Federal Government has released a discussion paper as part of its review of the need for, benefits and costs of a compensation scheme for investors who lose their money through the misconduct of a financial service provider.

A study by Deloitte has found that the majority of Australian Chief Financial Officers are more optimistic about the prospects for their companies now than they were three months ago, and are more willing to take risks.

The Assistant Treasurer, Bill Shorten, is proposing new regulations to specify which taxes, fees and charges will still be subject to the Goods and Services Tax (GST).

Australian universities have been invited to tender for $12.1m funding from the Commonwealth to host the Centre for International Finance and Regulation.

Ernst & Young’s fourth Capital Confidence Barometer has found that while nearly a third of Australasian businesses are considering  opportunities for mergers and acquisitions, they are less likely now to acquire than in the previous year.

A discussion paper, Privilege in relation to tax advice, has been released by The Treasury which explores the appropriateness of establishing a tax advice privilege.

The Assistant Treasurer, Bill Shorten, HAS released for public consultation exposure draft legislation that will enable farmers who have trusts to continue to use the primary production averaging and farm management deposits provisions in a loss year.

Over 5,000 victims of fraud from the collapse of Trio Capital Limited (Trio), will be compensated with a grant totalling around $55 million announced by the Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation, Bill Shorten.

ASIC is proposing an overhaul of prospectuses to make them easier for retail investors to use and to improve the quality of information on the proposed business model and the associated risks.

The Treasurer, Wayne Swan, has directed the Australian Office of Financial Management (AOFM) to invest a further $4 billion in high-quality, AAA-rated Australian residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) to help smaller lenders continue to offer competitive loans to families and small businesses.

The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) has released a consultation paper to seek views on a new training and assessment framework for financial advisers.

The Australian Centre for Financial Studies and KPMG have released a joint report on the future of bank funding in Australia, concluding that, due to slow-changing factors such as the balance of payments and superannuation arrangements, the mix of funding sources is unlikely to change substantially in future years.

Consulting firm, KPMG, has released the results of its latest study of fraud, finding that over $115 million was lost to the Australian economy as a result to fraud over the last 6 months.

Managed Investment Trusts (MITs) have an extra year to prepare for the new MIT tax system after the Federal Government announced last week it will defer the start date of the new laws from 1 July 2011 to 1 July 2012.

Members of the Financial Planning Association (FPA) have overwhelmingly supported the introduction of a new three-year strategic plan which aims to introduce higher standards to the industry and give financial planning recognition as a profession.

The Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation Bill Shorten has met with representatives from the financial planning, tax and accounting bodies, the Treasury, the Tax Practitioners Board (the Board) and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and agreed to a set of principles that will be used to develop regulatory arrangements for financial planners who provide tax advice within the context of providing financial advice.

The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) has released a Better Practice Guide for fraud control in Australian government entities, designed to complement a recently updated version of the Commonwealth Fraud Control Guidelines (the Fraud Control Guidelines).

Submissions to the  Senate inquiry into the development of a capital market for social economy organisations have been called for following the release of its issues paper, ‘Financing the not-for-profit sector’.

An updated regulatory guide released by ASIC provides further guidance and clarity for lenders on assessing borrowers' capacity to repay under the responsible lending requirements of the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009 (National Credit Act).

ASIC has released a series of new and updated guidance documents for financial service providers.

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