Atlassian sharpens climate credentials with latest pledge

Mr Cannon-Brookes has been one of corporate Australia’s most-prominent advocates of stepping up climate action, and is pouring millions of dollars into developing a huge solar farm in the country’s north to export clean energy to Asia.


Jessica Hyman, head of sustainability at Atlassian, said the COVID-19 experience underscored the importance of setting goals based on the science.

“If we don’t address these existential problems like climate change, we’re going to be in trouble,” Ms Hyman said. “They don’t go away.”

One part of the plan, to cut business travel a quarter by 2025, has already got off to an early start because of the pandemic, with emissions dropping more than 60 per cent from about 21,700 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent last year as lockdowns affected movement.

Still, the company expects a rebound as “lights go back on” and its own business continues to expand rapidly.


Atlassian, which is building a new headquarters in Sydney that will have half the embedded carbon and use half the energy of a conventional office tower, will also lean on suppliers to set their own science-based emissions targets. It hopes to nudge two-thirds of them to do so by 2025 up from less than 1 per cent now.

“You actually have to change the way your business operates,” Ms Hyman said. “It’s about creating a business that will be here for the long term, not just quarter over quarter.”

While Joe Biden’s win in the US presidential elections will likely bring more momentum to global action to reduce emissions when America rejoins the Paris climate agreement, companies everywhere will have to their part too, Ms Hyman said.

“We would hope that governments would lead when it comes to climate policy because it sets up a really strong direction for everyone else,” she said. “But regardless of that, companies have a responsibility to act.”

Technology Newsletter

The top technology stories and reviews delivered weekly. Sign up to The Age‘s newsletter here and The Sydney Morning Herald‘s here.

Most Viewed in Business


Source link

great for the environment, but not small farmers

Following the announcement by the UK government of new funding rules for agriculture to replace the EU’s CAP following Brexit small tenant farmers and the beef and sheep sectors are set to suffer.

That’s the opinion of Sarah Dodds, Head of Agriculture at MHA MacIntyre Hudson. Dodds goes onto say:

The government’s new Environment Land Management (ELM) system has been well received by many but tenant farmers and the beef and sheep sectors can be forgiven if they don’t feel overjoyed.

The difficulty is that to unlock the top-level funding for environmental projects, under tier 2 and tier 3 of the new ELM system, farmers will need a lot of land, as projects like reforestation or the restoration of wetlands are only feasible on farms of a certain size.

The system may therefore reward larger landowners at the expense of smaller farmers, who don’t own their own land and threaten sectors such as livestock who can’t use their land for environmental purposes so easily.

“This is ironic as the current CAP system, which is based on the amount of land farmed, is often criticised for rewarding larger landowners. The new system doesn’t seem to change much on this front. What’s more, UK livestock farmers are under further threat with the prospect of cheaper imports, with lower welfare standards, following Brexit, so now is an especially bad time to put them at a disadvantage for funding.

There are still opportunities for some in the new system, principally for farmers looking for new revenue streams as well as those looking to exclude unproductive areas from crop rotation, and those looking to create habitats to enhance the environment. Overall, farmers need to start planning now, as the new funding system begins to phase in next year, with the pressure points likely to be in 2023-24 when support given under the old system will be substantially reduced.

Source link

Enhancing the employee experience with flexibility

Following months of lockdown and orders to work from home, we are beginning to see a new outlook on what an ideal work-life balance looks like for Aussie workers.

Unlike big corporations who may be subject to more complex workplace regulations and multiple higher-ups when it comes to making a decision, SMEs are in a much better position for change. The reduced layers of complexity allow these businesses to better adapt to and take advantage of flexible work arrangements within reasonable cost and timeframes.

So, what are the key things to consider when essentialising flexibility in a small team?

Putting mental health at the forefront

Mental health and employee well-being have been a key focus for many years. From improved diet to more regular exercises, employers should be looking at these outcomes as valuable reference points when designing the structure of flexible work arrangements in a post-COVID environment, ensuring the appropriate balance of organisational and employee needs and expectations.

Ongoing effective communication is key

Given the current uncertainty facing Aussie workers, SMEs need to be ready for a series of conversations with employees to find out what they value and what works best for them. Due to the high variability in the nature of work that could be done remotely, productivity may fluctuate. Where one employee may enjoy not having to commute at all, another may find it hard to focus at home with children or pets causing distractions. Flexibility works out differently for each employee, so employers must start to engage in these conversations to keep up the changing needs across the workplace and employee expectations.

Communication is also key to keep the workforce connected in spite of the physical distance. The opportunity to work flexible hours at flexible locations should be accompanied by the necessary tools to ensure collaboration and “learning by seeing” aren’t disrupted. A hybrid model, consisting of both online and offline communication, remains the most practical and sustainable way in maintaining teamwork.

Adding flexibility to the job ad

Our research suggests Aussie workers’ desire for flexibility will continue after the COVID-19 pandemic. This will have a huge impact on the way businesses recruit new talent in the coming months and years, as our research shows 71 per cent of those aged 18 to 24 would prioritise work flexibility over fixed pay. This isn’t about reducing the average wage or trading off salary increases for flexible policies, but rather recognising the demand and value employees now attribute to flexibility in the workplace. SMEs who want to remain competitive in the current climate but don’t have the deep pockets of their larger competitors must embrace and promote the flexible policies that will attract the brightest talent.

Being flexible with flexibility

SMEs must also be flexible in the way they offer flexibility. As the pandemic mandated employees to work from home, the veil was lifted on the ability to allow flexible arrangements without the associated drop in employee efficiency and productivity many businesses have traditionally feared. From remote working and purchased leave through to flexible hours and on-demand pay, employers should now be looking at the array of practices that comprise flexibility. Whilst organisational needs and the reality that some roles are not amenable to types of flexible arrangements must be considered, organisations should carefully consider whether reverting to a pre-COVID framework in a post-COVID world is the right strategy.

Flexibility has grown to become a vital component in workforce management and potentially, future talent acquisition. With smaller sizes and simpler business structures, SMEs have the natural advantage of adopting flexibility with relative ease, and should be doing so where they can.

Richard Breden, General Manager, Ascender 

Source link

Record-Shattering Flows Into Stock ETFs Leave Bond Funds in Dust

Article content continued

About 95% of stock funds posted gains last month, with around two-thirds of them beating the S&P 500.

The clear winner from the renewed appetite has been Vanguard Group thanks to its line-up of low-cost products. The $189 billion Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI) has seen the most inflows this year at $27.2 billion, followed by the $177 billion Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO), which has absorbed $26.7 billion.

They may have been overtaken for flows, but it remains a banner year for fixed-income ETFs.

After a violent selloff created a liquidity crunch across bond markets, the Federal Reserve announced in March that it would buy ETFs for the first time. Billions poured into credit funds in the aftermath, curing deep discounts and putting them on track for a record 12 months.

The Fed has only purchased about $8.7 billion worth of corporate bond ETFs in total, but the central bank’s presence has been enough to give the products a stamp of approval. BlackRock Inc.’s $58.6 billion iShares iBoxx $ Investment Grade Corporate Bond ETF (LQD) has attracted $18.3 billion so far this year, putting it in third place behind VTI and VOO.

Total assets in U.S. bond ETFs stand at roughly $1.1 trillion, while their stock counterparts hold $4 trillion. If the equity rally gains further steam, that gap could grow even bigger.

“Flows follow performance,” said Dan Suzuki, deputy chief investment officer at Richard Bernstein Advisors. “Investor confidence over the past couple months has also benefited greatly from positive vaccine news.”

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

Source link

Dow Jones Futures Signal Stock Market Rally; Tesla, Nio, Xpeng, Moderna, Zoom Are Notable Movers

Dow Jones futures jumped Tuesday morning, along with S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures, on continued coronavirus vaccine optimism and strong China manufacturing data. Apple (AAPL), Tesla (TSLA), Nio, Xpeng Motors and Moderna stock were rallying before the open, while Zoom Video Communications (ZM) retreated.


The stock market rally lost ground Monday but came off lows, especially the Nasdaq, fueled by gains in Apple (AAPL), Moderna (MRNA) and AMD stock. In Monday’s session, Apple stock flashed an early buy signal, while Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) broke out. Apple chipmaker Qorvo (QRVO) also cleared a buy point.

Tesla, Nio Early Movers

The S&P 500 index will add Tesla stock in one fell swoop before Dec. 21, S&P Dow Jones Indices announced late Monday. Meanwhile, China rivals Nio (NIO) and Xpeng Motors (XPEV) reported November deliveries early Tuesday. Moderna just kept soaring.

On the downside, Zoom Video, the ultimate coronavirus play, reported better-than-expected results and upside guidance. But Zoom Video stock fell solidly before the open

Tesla and Zoom Video stock are two of the biggest 2020 winners, up 578% and 603%, respectively as of Monday’s close. But MRNA stock is 681% year to to date. Nio stock is up a 1,157% so far in 2020. Recent IPO Xpeng stock is up just 291%, though it tripled in November alone.

Apple stock, the ultimate megacap, rose before the open after closing right at an aggressive entry.

On Monday, Chinese stocks struggled on a variety of factors, including a looming House vote on legislation that could lead to delistings from U.S. markets. Fraud allegations vs. EV maker Kandi Technologies (KNDI) didn’t help. E-commerce giants (JD), Pinduoduo (PDD) and Alibaba (BABA) suffered significant losses. Tesla electric car rivals Nio, Xpeng and Li Auto (LI) also retreated. stock, Pinduoduo, AMD and Tesla are on IBD Leaderboard. Apple stock is on the Leaderboard watchlist. AMD and Tesla stock are on SwingTrader. AMD stock is on the IBD 50.

Dow Jones Futures Today

Dow Jones futures rose 1.15% vs. fair value. S&P 500 futures climbed 1.1%. Nasdaq 100 futures advanced 1%. Apple stock gave a lift to the Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Nasdaq.

Caixin’s China manufacturing index rose 1.3 points in November to 54.9, the highest in 10 years. That comes a day after the official China manufacturing gauge hit a three-year high.

Remember that overnight action in Dow futures and elsewhere doesn’t necessarily translate into actual trading in the next regular stock market session.

Join IBD experts as they analyze actionable stocks in the stock market rally on IBD Live.

Coronavirus News

Coronavirus cases worldwide reached 63.70 million. Covid-19 deaths topped 1.47 million.

Coronavirus cases in the U.S. have hit 13.92 million, with deaths above 274,000.

The Moderna coronavirus vaccine is 94.1% effective, the biotech said early Monday. Notably, it’s 100% effective in preventing serious Covid-19 cases. Moderna (MRNA) filed for FDA approval, a few days after Pfizer (PFE)] and BioNTech (BNTX) filed with the FDA for their 95%-effective coronavirus vaccine.

Moderna stock spiked 20% Monday, capping a 126% explosion in November. MRNA stock kept soaring, tacking on 10% early Tuesday.

Stock Market Rally

U.S. Stock Market Today Overview

IndexSymbolPriceGain/Loss% Change
Dow Jones(0DJIA)29643.97-266.40-0.89
S&P 500(0S&P5)3621.82-16.53-0.45
Nasdaq(0NDQC )12198.74-7.11-0.06
Russell 2000 (IWM)181.30-3.07-1.67
IBD 50 (FFTY)39.50+0.18+0.46
Last Update: 4:22 PM ET 11/30/2020

The stock market rally had a down day, but the Nasdaq was resilient while leading stocks did well overall.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.9% in Monday’s stock market trading. The S&P 500 index sank 0.5%. The Nasdaq composite lost just a fraction, after falling more than 1% intraday.

For the month, the Dow Jones soared 11.9%, the S&P 500 10.8% and the Nasdaq 11.8%.

Some highflying IPOs came under pressure Monday, though they generally closed with modest losses or even reversed higher.

Growth stocks overall fared well. Among the best ETFs, the Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) rose 0.5%. The iShares Expanded Tech-Software Sector ETF (IGV) climbed 0.45%. The VanEck Vectors Semiconductor ETF (SMH) popped 1.1%, with AMD stock a notable contributor.

Read The Big Picture every day to stay in sync with the market direction and leading stocks and sectors.

Zoom Video Earnings

Zoom Video earnings shot up 1,000% to 99 cents a share, with revenue up 366.5% to $777.19 million. Analysts expected Zoom Video earnings of 76 cents on revenue of $693.4 million.

The videoconferencing leader guided higher for Q4 and for 2021.

However, Zoom Video stock fell 7% in premarket action. Shares rose 1.4% to 478.36 on Monday, reclaiming the 50-day line.

AMD Stock

AMD stock jumped 6.3% to 92.66 in heavy volume Monday, blasting above an 88.82 buy point from a double-bottom base. CEO Lisa Su said during a Credit Suisse conference on Monday that AMD sees Q1 sales trending “a little bit better” than normal seasonality, suggesting some upside.

Qorvo Stock

Qorvo stock rose 4.4% to 156.68, clearing the 154.53 buy point from a three-weeks-tight pattern. The chipmaker is benefiting from momentum in 5G wireless, including the new Apple iPhone. Qorvo was an IBD Stock Of The Day last week.

Qualcomm (QCOM), another 5G and Apple chipmaker, rose 2.3% to 147.17, working on a four-weeks-tight entry with an official buy point of 153.43, according to MarketSmith analysis. Qualcomm stock was Monday’s Stock Of The Day.

Apple Stock

Giving a boost to Qualcomm and Qorvo stock, Apple stock rose 2.1% to 119.05, though it backed off an intraday high of 120.97.

Loop Capital upgraded Apple to a buy with a 131 price target, expecting upside to iPhone sales and other products and services. Morgan Stanley tapped the iPhone maker as a strong 5G play.

Shares are rebounding from their 50-day moving average. The official buy point is 138.08, with early entries of 125.49 and 122.09. Apple stock did cross a trend line starting from the Oct. 13 high, essentially closing right on that line.

An aggressive investor could start an AAPL stock position here, then perhaps add more shares as it clears the 122.09 and 125.49 levels and finally the 138.08 buy point.

Apple stock has slightly lagged the broader market for the past few months. If the tech giant can wake up, it would add real momentum to the major indexes.

Apple stock rose 2% before the open.

Tesla Stock Jumps On S&P 500 Update

Tesla stock rose 5% overnight on the S&P Dow Jones Indices’ decision to add the EV maker to the S&P 500 index in one go. Because of Tesla’s huge market cap, the committee had mulled splitting the stock’s entry into two tranches.

Tesla stock has skyrocketed since the announcement that Tesla will join the S&P 500 before the open on Dec. 21.

Meanwhile, Tesla got China’s official green light on Monday to sell the Model Y from its Shanghai plant, as expected.

Tesla stock briefly rose to a new high of 607.80 soon after Monday’s open before reversing for a 3.1% decline to 567.30.

Nio, Xpeng Deliveries

Nio delivered 5,291 electric vehicles in November, up 109% vs. a year earlier. That includes 2,386 ES6s, 1,387 ES8s and 1,518 EC6s. The recently launched EC6 crossover will compete with the Tesla Model Y when that launches.

Xpeng delivered 4,224 electric vehicles, up 342% vs. a year earlier. That includes 2,732 P7 sedans, which competes with the Tesla Model 3. Xpeng also sold 1,492 G3s, its small SUV.

Li Auto will likely release November delivery figures in the next few days.

Goldman Sachs raised its price targets on Nio and Li Auto stock for good measure.

Overall China EV production and sales, including Tesla figures will probably come next week.

Nio stock rose 3% early Tuesday. Xpeng rallied 7% and Li Auto stock 10%.

On Monday, Nio sank 6.4% while Li Auto and Xpeng stock lost nearly 9% on a bad day for U.S.-listed Chinese stocks.

Kandi Technologies tumbled 28% after short-seller Hindenburg Research accused the Chinese EV maker of fraudulent sales.

Please follow Ed Carson on Twitter at @IBD_ECarson for stock market updates and more.


Why This IBD Tool Simplifies The Search For Top Stocks

Best Growth Stocks To Buy And Watch

IBD Digital: Unlock IBD’s Premium Stock Lists, Tools And Analysis Today

Source link

November was busier than October in terms of business activity in India: Nomura

November proved to be a busier month than October in terms of business activity as India’s pace of business resumption touched another post-lockdown high, according to Nomura.

The Nomura India Business Resumption Index (NIBRI) came in at 89.2 for the week ended November 29, up from 88.7 recorded in the previous week, the brokerage said in a note on Tuesday.

“November was a busier month than October; the NIBRI picked up by 4.6pp (percentage points) m-o-m compared to a 2.1pp gain in October, reflecting ‘residual’ festive mobility and demand,” said the firm’s economists, Sonal Varma and Aurodeep Nandi.

The development came despite increased threats of pandemic resurgence and the revival of lockdown restrictions in various states, it said.

Experts were concerned that a second wave of infections post the festive season could further impact consumption demand amid the ebbing of the festive and pent-up demand phase.

While earlier improvements to the NIBRI were mobility-driven, the latest increase comes along with week-on-week declines in the Apple Driving Index and Google’s retail & recreation mobility index, which recorded its first fall in eight weeks.

On the other hand, Google’s workplace mobility posted positive growth during the week after declining through most of November.

Another indicator being tracked by the weekly index that broke a declining trend was the labour participation rate, which nched up to 41.1% from 39.3% the previous week, although it is still below pre-pandemic levels.

Similarly, power demand also recovered by 1.5% week-on-week after a 0.1% decline in the week earlier, the note said.

Nomura had raised its forecast of FY21 growth for India to -8.2% against -10.8% earlier “despite downside risks from a potential local resurgence in virus cases, ebbing pent-up demand, weaker global growth and a latent fiscal drag from ongoing expenditure compression,” the note said.

Source link

How Gretel is catching James in Packer fortunes

It appears that most of this reversal in fortune over the year can be attributed to a fall in the value of Crown Resorts shares. In the previous year CPH earned about $70 million in profits.

However, it should be noted that in the year to June 30, 2020, Packer did receive an interim dividend from Crown.

The Packer estate divvy up was a protracted process but looks to have settled around Christmas in 2015. The details were not made public but some elements had to be disclosed to various stock exchanges.

Piecing this together with snippets of information that leaked and were never disputed by either party, one thing is clear – Gretel ended up with half of her brother’s stake in US real estate portal Zillow.

Based on the share price at the time from US exchange filings, Gretel got her shares at around $US26 a share. The $200 million value of that investment would today be valued at around $880 million.


While Gretel rode the sometimes bumpy fortunes of Zillow, her brother is said to have divested himself of the Zillow position at roughly $US26 per share – done through a block trade by UBS. In doing so he left a lot of money on the table.

At the time Packer was concerned with reducing his personal debt and had embarked on an asset sale program. Also back in late 2015, early 2016, James Packer had focused his investments on Crown – a strategy that seemed like a winner given Crown’s profit was powering along on the back of the growth in VIP gamblers coming in from China.

(As we know from evidence heard at the recent commission of inquiry into Crown, Packer had a particular interest in the booming China VIP market.)

But 10 months into 2016, Crown’s growth engine stalled when 19 of its China-based staff were arrested for gambling-related offences, most of whom were imprisoned.

Gretel Packer seems to have done well out of her investment in Zillow.

Meanwhile part of Gretel Packer’s financial settlement was a $100 million parcel (about 8.6 million) Crown Resorts shares – which can be gleaned from ASX substantial shareholder announcements. She held the shares through a private company RPSCO Pty Ltd.

This company, of which Gretel Packer was the sole director, can no longer be found on the Crown list of major shareholders. Sources familiar with Gretel Packer’s financials say she sold the Crown stake years ago – well above the price at which they currently trade.

Five years ago the Packer split of the estate was referred to as an acrimonious affair with James Packer said to have been unhappy with the outcome.

In addition to the Crown and Zillow shares, Gretel ultimately ended up with 100 per cent of the family’s rural estate Ellerston (valued at the time at about $120 million), full ownership of the Packer boat the Artic P and cash of several hundred million dollars. All up the package was said to be worth a bit more than $1 billion at the time of the settlement.

A decent portion of the cash and the proceeds of Gretel’s Crown shares has reportedly been invested with funds manager Caledonia Investments. Caledonia’s chief investment office, Will Vicars (himself a billionaire), took the role of Gretel’s negotiator during the split of the estate. His counterpart on James Packer’s side was Matthew Grounds – the then head of investment bank UBS.

Caledonia funds have ridden some periods of extreme volatility but over five years performance has come in at around 16 per cent compound per annum. If one takes into account Caledonia’s flagship hedge fund and its co-investments, the fund is up 42 per cent this year to the end of October.

Five years ago the Packer split of the estate was referred to as an acrimonious affair with James Packer said to have been unhappy with the outcome.

Given the private nature of Gretel’s financial position, this analysis is not comprehensive. But piecing together known facts (and assumptions about money invested in Calendonia funds) Gretel Packer’s Forbes listing at $US2 billion worth could be quite conservative.

A spokesman for Gretel Packer declined to comment.

Meanwhile James Packer’s spokesperson cautioned that the CPH accounts released this week do not provide a comprehensive tally of all his investments. Several are owned through other CPH subsidiaries. However, James Packer’s main investment remains his now 36 per cent stake in Crown.

James Packer with a fortune estimated by Forbes to be $US3.4 billion is the wealthier sibling. But, at least based on her Zillow investment, his sister is catching up.

Business Briefing

Start the day with major stories, exclusive coverage and expert opinion from our leading business journalists delivered to your inbox. Sign up for the Herald‘s here and The Age‘s here.

Most Viewed in Business


Source link

Daimler awards 1,000 euro ‘corona bonus’ to German employees

December 1, 2020

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – German carmaker Daimler on Tuesday said it will pay German employees a 1,000 euros “corona bonus” to help compensate for personal and economic burdens such as having to wear a mask and working from home.

“Due to Corona, 2020 was a particularly challenging year. During this extraordinary time the company could always count on the flexibility and willingness of our workforce,” Daimler’s personnel chief Wilfried Porth said in a statement.

Around 160,000 employees in Germany are eligible for the bonus, the Stuttgart-based carmaker, which also owns the Mercedes-Benz brand, said.

(Reporting by Edward Taylor, editing by Louise Heavens)

Source link

Coronavirus latest: Virus restrictions weigh on Spanish and French factory activity

Naomi Rovnick

European equities started December on a bright note, following a record November, after encouraging Chinese factory data prompted investors to look ahead to a global economic recovery.

The benchmark Stoxx 600 index rose 0.7 per cent in the first hour of trading, having gained almost 14 per cent in November. The UK’s FTSE 100, which on Monday closed its best month since 1989, opened 1.6 per cent higher. Germany’s Dax added 0.9 per cent.

This followed gains in Asia after a survey run by Chinese publication Caixin found industrial activity in November in the world’s second-largest economy was accelerating at its fastest pace in a decade. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.9 per cent and Japan’s Nikkei 225 1.3 per cent.

“This validates the idea that, when you get the pandemic under control and you really manage to keep it low, economies can catch up extremely rapidly,” said Samy Chaar, chief economist at Lombard Odier.

Mr Chaar added that the composition of Joe Biden’s proposed administration signalled positive prospects not only for fiscal and monetary stimulus but also for a “progressive and gradual winding down” of pandemic emergency schemes that would not overly disrupt financial markets. Former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen has been nominated to run the Treasury department.

The Caixin purchasing managers’ index produced a reading of 54.9 for last month, which was comfortably above the 50-level that separates growth from contraction and better than the expectations of economists polled by Reuters. This echoed similar findings from a government survey published on Monday.

Shares in economically and trade-sensitive companies were the best performers in Europe on Tuesday, with banks, energy producers and carmakers all rising.

Futures markets signalled a strong day on Wall Street. Contracts wagering on the direction of the blue-chip S&P 500 index gained 0.9 per cent while those on the technology-focused Nasdaq added 0.7 per cent.

Haven assets, which investors turn to in times of economic stress, continued to underperform. The dollar, as measured against a basket of trading partners’ currencies, hovered around its lowest since April 2018. Gold rose by less than 1 per cent to $1,793 a troy ounce but remained around its lowest since early July.

The Vix, which measures investors’ expectations of share price volatility on the S&P 500, fell to a reading of 20.2, its lowest since late February.

Brent crude, the international oil benchmark, slipped 0.3 per cent to $44.74 a barrel, having gained 27 per cent during November.

Source link