The author has been described by News Ltd as an "iconoclast", "Svengali", a pollie's "economist muse", and "pungently accurate". Fairfax says he is a "Renaissance man" and "one of Australia’s most respected analysts." Stephen Koukoulas concludes that he is "85% right", and "would make a great Opposition leader." Terry McCrann claims the author thinks "‘nuance’ is a trendy village in the south of France", but can be "scintillating" when he thinks "clearly". The ACTU reckons he’s "an enigma wrapped in a Bloomberg terminal, wrapped in some apparently well-honed abs."

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Major banks looking to head offshore...

ANZ makes the interesting point that they had to head offshore to remain "a growth stock." From industry bible Banking Day this morning:

"Chairs of the board of two bank boards yesterday addressed some of the issues arising from the ACCC’s rejection of National Australia Bank’s bid for Axa Asia Pacific...

Michael Chaney, chair of National Australia said the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s decision caught NAB off-guard. Chaney said the bank could look for more offshore business.

"We were very disappointed (by the ACCC); the competition law experts told us it was not the right decision," Chaney said.

"We have now accepted that and we're moving on.

"We have felt we ought to be able to generate a better shareholder return by focusing on what we do well here.

"It's inevitable that we would be looking at that (offshore) in due course..."

John Morschel, chair of ANZ, also highlighted the consequences of the ACCC’s approach towards NAB’s bid for Axa.

“We have had the regulator say there will be no future consolidation in Australia," Morschel said.

"And Australia is quite well banked. What do we do? We can enter a market share battle, but with four major players there will be winners and losers in that.

"But if you are looking forward, and looking where global growth will come from, we think Asia has to be the principal point of focus.”

Morschel provided one insight into the reasons ANZ developed its present international strategy three years ago.

"We felt that we had to do it [increase the bank’s investment in Asia] to make sure that we were a growth stock. Otherwise we would have become a yield stock and if that happens your share price can suffer.""