Business stories of interest this week

Business stories from the past week, compiled by Jason Maywald:

  1. – New home sales rise in August: HIA
    First home buyers on the east coast have been taking advantage of government grants to snap up newly built homes, Housing Industry Association research has found.New home sales rose 9.1 per cent in August compared to July, according to the HIA New Home Sales report, which surveys the largest volume home builders across the five largest states.READ MORE


  2. – There are 23.9 billion reasons to love a ‘big Australia’
    Look out, here comes another wave of anti-immigration sentiment, or at least pro-much-lower-immigration sentiment, riding on a surge in March quarter population figures, the biggest rise since 2009.The population growing in the March quarter by 126,000 is either being blamed or thanked for keeping housing prices strong in Sydney and Melbourne. It will feed the tide of anti-immigration sentiment that’s spreading out beyond Dick Smith publicity stunts and One Nation ratbaggery, assisted by the “Australia First” rhetoric of the Labor and Liberal parties.READ MORE


  3. – IKEA buys TaskRabbit to help you build furnitureIn yet another surprising union of traditional retail and the tech world, IKEA has reportedly snapped up the on-demand service TaskRabbit, Recode reports. The deal makes a lot of sense. TaskRabbit has made a name for itself as the go-to service for random tasks — and that often involves moving and building furniture.An acquisition is just the next step for the two companies: IKEA is already relying on TaskRabbit as a partner in the UK, and it’s advertising the service for customers who need installation help in the U.S. and the rest of the world. IKEA says TaskRabbit will continue to operate as an independent company.



  4. – Start up wants to disrupt your laundryLaundromap, a business which is aiming to disrupt the $2 billion dry cleaning and laundromat industry in Australia in a similar way to how Uber has up-ended the taxi industry, is preparing to raise up to $4 million to help fund a national roll-out and acquisitions.Co-founder and chief executive Hayden Foster said the company had been operating in Perth for six months and in Auckland for 10 months as it ironed out teething problems in small city markets.



  5. – Global economy week ahead: Eurozone and US unemployment, India rate decisionThis week’s economic calendar features two unemployment readings that will be closely watched as central bankers in Europe and the U.S. aim to raise interest rates and shrink balance sheets even as they puzzle over weak inflation readings.READ MORE

Jason Maywald is a highly experienced legal and transactional advisor in the insurance and medical assistance sectors.