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Mar 15, 2012

Smartcompany News and Analysis: PayPal unveils news smartphone payment system, Wine group in receivership, Government to examine new structure for SME entities, New iPad on sale

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As James Thomson says in Entrepreneur Watch, small business is basking in the glow of an extraordinary amount of attention from politicians at the moment. Today we look at the latest idea to be tossed around, a new small business entity that could allow entrepreneurs to set up a structure that is much more suited to their needs.

We also look at the collapse of another wine business, PayPal’s new micro payments offering and an unfair dismissal case where the successful employee received compensation for loss of income – as well as the child care costs incurred looking for a new job.

Make buying a breeze for your customer
Buying something should be simple, but it can descend into frustration — don’t let your customers walk away feeling like they’ve been put through the wringer. BY TOM McKASKILL.

How I
How I managed a cash flow crisis with flexible staff
Dianne Gardiner noticed the potential of social media for market research in 2007. After surviving a cash flow crisis, business is booming. BY PATRICK STAFFORD.

Aunty B
Why does everyone love my idea, except my mum?
The real question is what industry experts think. You need to find out what you don't know, not have confirmation of what you do.
Aunty B

Selling strategies
Trent Leyshan
If you’re going to invest a large part of your life into sales, you should take it personally when someone lets you down.
Ask the Experts

The Futurist
Colin Benjamin
It is interesting to see the future through Chinese eyes as I roam the streets of Shanghai.
Smart Blogs

Property Investor
Michael Yardney
There’s little doubt that 2012 will be a year of economic crises. But a group of successful property investors will be quietly growing their wealth.
Smart Blogs

Female Entrepreneur
Naomi Simson
While I'm not keen to generalise about generations, there do seem to be seven key differences to how people born after 1980 see the world.
Smart Blogs

Entrepreneur Watch
James Thomson
Politicians are suddenly coming from everywhere to embrace SMEs. Let’s hope this translates into real change.

NYT Breaking News: Suspect in Afghan Attacks Had Been Drinking, U.S. Official Says

Breaking News
The New York Times
Thursday, March 15, 2012

Suspect in Afghan Attacks Had Been Drinking, U.S. Official Says

The American staff sergeant suspected of killing 16 Afghan villagers had been drinking alcohol — a violation of military rules in combat zones — and suffering from the stress related to his fourth combat tour and tensions with his wife about the deployments on the night of the massacre, a senior American official said Thursday.

“When it all comes out, it will be a combination of stress, alcohol and domestic issues — he just snapped,” said the official, who has been briefed on the investigation and who spoke on condition of anonymity because the soldier has not yet been formally charged.

As new details emerged about possible reasons behind the shootings, the American official said the military was preparing to move the sergeant to a prison in the United States as early as Friday, most likely to Fort Leavenworth, Kan., just a day after he was flown to a detention site in Kuwait from Afghanistan.

Read More:

Financial and Forex Info News | The Australian Capital Circle: Labor in Future Fund 'shemozzle'

Labor in Future Fund 'shemozzle'
The Gillard government faces allegations of a "severely compromised" process in its appointment of a new Future Fund chairman.

In Capital Circle's opinion, Labor could not have stuffed up the appointment of its new Future Fund chairman any more if it tried. The naming of respected businessman David Gonski to the post should have been good news for the government. But the manner in which he was appointed has raised concerns over its commitment to due process and accountability. Former treasurer Peter Costello, who was passed over for the job, has accused the Gillard government of basic incompetence in its oversight of the $73 billion fund, after it rejected the views of board members on who should succeed David Murray as chairman. (report ) He said Mr Gonski's initial role in taking soundings from fund board members on their preferred candidate - one Peter Costello - should have disqualified him from taking the post. (transcript)
Julia Gillard will give a St Patrick's Day speech in Sydney today and will address an Asia Business Council forum.
Tony Abbott is in Canberra today for meetings. In his regular Today Show slot, he rejected criticism by Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa of the Coalition's policy to turn back asylum boats. "These are Indonesian flagged, Indonesian crewed, Indonesian home-ported vessels that are coming from Indonesia," Mr Abbott said. "Of course they can go back to Indonesia. They’ve done it before, they can do it again.”
Debate: The Senate is sitting an extra day today to debate the government's mining tax.

Wayne Swan will give a speech today to the Tax Institute's national convention, focusing on the government's proposed small business tax cuts.

Andrew Robb will also deliver a speech today, addressing “vulnerabilities” in the Austra
Peter Brent
Peter Brent
Arthur is also smart
Foreign Minister Bob Carr isn’t the only person from New South Wales to be ushered into the Senate amid fanfare and high expectations. …
More Peter Brent

NYT Global Update: Karzai Calls on U.S. to Pull Back as Taliban Cancel Talks

Global Update


Karzai Calls on U.S. to Pull Back as Taliban Cancel Talks

Prospects for an orderly NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan suffered two setbacks as President Hamid Karzai demanded limits on United States troops and the Taliban halted peace talks.

Party Ousts Chinese Regional Chief, Halting His Rise

The removal of Bo Xilai, a Communist Party official, effectively ends his political ambitions and complicates China's leadership transition.

With Arms for Yemen Rebels, Iran Seeks Wider Mideast Role

While some Yemeni officials are skeptical of the impact of shipments of weapons to the Houthi rebels, American officials see the aid as part of a broader Iranian "shadow war."

Video: TimesCast

The Taliban suspend peace talks with the United States, and more.

Op-Ed Contributors

Nuclear Terrorism: A Clear Danger

The world cannot afford to wait for the patchwork of nuclear security arrangements to fail.
Memo From Kabul

In Reactions to Two Incidents, a U.S.-Afghan Disconnect

The muted response in Afghanistan to a massacre of 16 Afghans relative to outrage at the burning of Korans, and American surprise at the difference, is evidence of a cultural gap.

Cameron and Obama Show Unity on Afghanistan

President Obama and Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain addressed concerns in the Middle East and said they would stick by their timetable for Afghanistan.

Panetta Says Afghan Who Died in Attack Did Not Target Him

An Afghan civilian who drove a stolen vehicle onto a runway ramp as a plane carrying Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta landed Wednesday has died of his injuries.

As India's Economy Sags, Bad Loans Beset State-Run Banks

India is trying to cope with debt and deficit problems that will put strains on the annual budget to be presented to Parliament on Friday.

Greece Urged by European Official to Do More

Horst Reichenbach, the head of the European Union's task force on Greece, said the country has made progress but more needs to be done to crack down on tax evasion.

Weekly Jobless Claims Decrease as Producer Prices Rise

The number of Americans claiming new jobless benefits fell to a four-year low last week, and the producer price index increased 0.4 percent last month, the government said.

With Video, Obama Looks to Expand Campaign's Reach Through Social Media

The documentary, set to go online Thursday, will be on a platform that allows supporters to organize and fund-raise without leaving the president's video page.

A Groupon Alternative Aims to Offer Small Businesses a Better Deal

Constant Contact's chief says its SaveLocal service picks up where daily deal sites like Groupon and LivingSocial fall short.

Cisco to Buy NDS, a Video Services Firm, for $5 Billion

The deal, which is expected to close by the end of the year, will help Cisco expand its video offerings as it works to bolster lagging growth in its core networks business.

In Chelsea Comeback, Stars Shine

Accused of forcing out their last coach, Chelsea's star players lead the team to a dramatic extra-time victory against Napoli.

Bayern Barrage Revives Talk of Champions League Title

Mario Gómez scored four times in 23 minutes against the Swiss champion, Basel, and Bayern won, 7-0.

Britannia's Games Still Rule Down Under

In this Olympic year, when London will soon be the center of the sports world, Australia is a good vantage point from which to assess the pervasive British impact on global sports.

Women Figure Anew in Senate's Latest Battle

Senate Democrats are beginning a push to renew the Violence Against Women Act, the once broadly bipartisan 1994 legislation that now faces fierce opposition from conservatives.

Making the Streets of San Francisco Easier to Park On

A program using new technology and flexible pricing based on supply and demand appears to have made finding a parking space easier in certain parts of the city.

Obama Defends Energy Policy, Hitting Back at Presidential Candidates

The president delivered a notably sarcastic rebuttal to his Republican presidential challengers, particularly Newt Gingrich, who has promised to bring down gas prices to $2.50 a gallon.
Patrick Chappatte

United States and Afghanistan

In Afghanistan, tensions are rising between the country's citizens and Americans.
Op-Ed Contributor

Where Myanmar Keeps Trampling Rights

Ignoring the plight of Myanmar's ethnic minority populations for fear of disrupting reforms will only stifle development and democracy in the long run.
Op-Ed Contributor

Shape a Peaceful Afghan Exit

A rushed departure by the U.S. and NATO would give the Taliban a sense of victory.

Stocks and Markets in the News | Tech. Stocks - MarketWatch


Tech Daily
MARCH 15, 2012

Tech Stocks: Apple pulls back from $600, but most techs gain
3/15/2012 4:33 PM ET
Cisco slips into the red after announcing $5 billion acquisition for cable TV technology company NDS Group.
Tech Stocks: Apple, Micron, Dell lead mixed day for tech stocks
3/14/2012 4:59 PM ET
Few gainers emerge as decliners weigh down the sector into the close.
After Hours: New York & Co. gains ground after hours
3/15/2012 5:01 PM ET
The clothing retailer swings to a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss, and shares gain ground in low volume.
Canadian Markets: Canadian stocks recover as consumer staples lead
3/15/2012 4:46 PM ET
Canadian stocks recovered on Thursday, aided by consumer staple shares and robust economic data from the U.S.
Market Snapshot: U.S. stock rise pushes S&P 500 past 1,400
3/15/2012 4:39 PM ET
U.S. stocks rise Thursday, lifting the S&P 500 index past 1,400 for the first time since June 2008, after another round of strong reports on jobless claims and manufacturing
Movers & Shakers: Thursday's biggest gaining & declining stocks
3/15/2012 4:33 PM ET
MarketWatch's daily rundown of shares that made sizeable moves in the U.S. stock market.
Cisco buying NDS for $5 billion in big video move
3/15/2012 4:26 PM ET
Cisco Systems agrees to acquire the U.K. software and services company geared to pay-TV operators for $5 billion, including assumption of debt.
Futures Movers: Oil closes off low; U.S. chills release talk
3/15/2012 3:57 PM ET
Crude-oil futures fall, but finishes off the session's low after the White House denies it had discussed a possible release of emergency oil reserves with the United Kingdom.
Rex On Techs: How ‘material' is Dell's deal for SonicWall?
3/15/2012 1:34 PM ET
PC maker's reported $1 billion-plus acquisition raises question of how much a company disclose to shareholders about what it does with its money, writes Rex Crum.
London Markets: Oil stocks weigh as FTSE 100 ends lower
3/15/2012 1:24 PM ET
Britain's benchmark stock index pares losses but ends in the red on Thursday, as heavily weighted oil stocks settle lower.
Israel Stocks: Israel's Nova helps ensure chips do their best
3/15/2012 12:52 PM ET
How small is small and how accurate is accurate? Israel's Nova Measuring Instruments will tell you — and securities analysts say its stock price might yet get bigger.
Radvision agrees to $11.85-share bid by Avaya
3/15/2012 7:02 AM ET
Radvision Ltd., the Tel Aviv producer of videoconferencing equipment, agreed to be acquired by Avaya Inc. for $11.85 a share cash, or $230 million.
Asia Markets: Asia stocks end mostly lower; Tokyo up on weak yen
3/15/2012 4:41 AM ET
Most Asian stocks fall, with Chinese property developers and many of the region's commodity producers declining on worries Beijing may not relax a policy aimed at cooling the housing market.
ETF Adviser: 5 ways investors can beat the retirement bandits
3/15/2012 12:01 AM ET
Millions of Americans have worked hard for a lifetime and somehow tucked away enough money to take care of their retirement. Yet because of demography, taxes and debt, their nest egg may not get the job done, writes Steve Beck.
Therese Poletti's Tech Tales: Memories of the first Nasdaq 3000 in 1999
3/15/2012 12:01 AM ET
As the Nasdaq hits 3000, it might be useful to walk down memory lane and look at the tech world over a decade ago, writes Therese Poletti.
Medical device merger boom here: analyst
3/14/2012 9:44 PM ET
Hundreds of small-cap medical device companies are likely to get gobbled up in coming years as margin pressures hit the industry, analyst says.
IPO Report: Three firms set IPO deal price
3/14/2012 7:37 PM ET
Demandware, M/A-Com and Allison Transmission all price IPO deals late Wednesday, with trades expected to begin Thursday morning.
MarketWatch First Take: Yahoo investor needs to show a game plan
3/14/2012 7:26 PM ET
Dissident Yahoo investor Daniel Loeb said he plans a proxy fight against the Internet pioneer, but he might have better sway if he discussed a game plan.
Investor to Yahoo: Prepare for war
3/14/2012 5:49 PM ET
Investor activist Daniel Loeb of Third Point Management says its ready to wage a proxy battle against the Yahoo board, accusing it of ‘stonewalling, insouciance.'
Stocks to Watch: Stocks to Watch Thursday: Guess, Ross
3/14/2012 5:18 PM ET
Guess Inc., Capital One Financial Corp. and Ross Stores Inc. are among the stocks that could see active trading on Thursday.
Movers & Shakers: Wednesday's biggest gaining and declining stocks
3/14/2012 5:13 PM ET
MarketWatch's daily rundown of shares making sizable moves in the U.S. stock market.
Market Snapshot: Dow logs sixth session win; S&P 500 ends lower
3/14/2012 4:48 PM ET
U.S. blue-chip stocks finish higher Wednesday, with the Dow extending its winning streak to a sixth session. Stress tests for the nation's biggest banks showed largely positive results, but some analysts say the equities market is overbought.
Energy Stocks: Halliburton, Consol lead energy stock retreat
3/14/2012 4:47 PM ET
Chevron and Anadarko draw positive analyst comments, as the sector pauses following Tuesday's gains.
The Ratings Game: Micron Tech rises on Bernstein upgrade
3/14/2012 4:20 PM ET
An analyst's upgrade cites the chipmaker's position in the still unfolding shift in the DRAM semiconductor market.
LSI stock soars on improved outlook
3/14/2012 4:08 PM ET
The chip maker sees its shares rise after raising its revenue outlook, citing stronger demand than expected for hard drives.
Latin American Markets: Mexican shares fall, Brazilian stocks turn lower
3/14/2012 2:25 PM ET
Mexican stocks fall Wednesday, giving back a portion of gains in the previous session that were fueled by brighter economic figures, and Brazilian stocks pull back a day after posting their best advance this year.
London Markets: FTSE 100 ends five-day climb; banks buck trend
3/14/2012 2:04 PM ET
Britain's benchmark stock index snaps a five-day winning streak to end moderately lower on Wednesday, as Vodafone Group PLC and miners sustain losses.
Jon Friedman's Media Web: Encyclopaedia Britannica can blame itself
3/14/2012 1:44 PM ET
The institution no longer has relevance in a Google and Wikipedia world, writes media columnist Jon Friedman
Twitter lights up with Goldman Sachs talk
3/14/2012 1:18 PM ET
Executive's resignation via op-ed in New York Times predictably ignites social-media maelstrom.
Market Extra: Apple pushes to new highs ahead of launch
3/14/2012 12:00 PM ET
Wall Street analysts have been pumping up their price targets on Apple ahead of the new iPad launch on Friday, which has helped fuel a run-up that is bring the stock closer to a new milestone of $600.
Outside the Box: The looming U.S. labor shortage
3/14/2012 8:28 AM ET
We are entering into an age where we will praise companies for destroying jobs, not creating them, writes Conor Sen.
IPad may be incremental to wireless carriers
3/14/2012 6:00 AM ET
Wireless carriers Verizon and AT&T are participating in launch of the new iPad from Apple later this week, hoping the tablet is a draw for their 4G services despite the fact that most tablet customers stick with WiFi-only devices.
Asia Markets: China stocks slump, hurt by Premier Wen's remarks
3/14/2012 4:30 AM ET
Mainland Chinese stocks suffer sharp late session pullback after Premier Wen Jiabao pours cold water on expectations Beijing may loosen policy toward the property sector.
Latin American Markets: Mexican stocks rise as local, U.S. data brighten
3/13/2012 6:47 PM ET
Mexican stocks rise Tuesday, with the market's first gain in three sessions supported by a climb in domestic industrial output figures and in monthly retail sales in the U.S., Mexico's key trading partner.
Wal-Mart unveils disc-to-digital service
3/13/2012 5:41 PM ET
In a major step that's expected to help juice movie sales, Wal-Mart, with five major studios, unveils an in-store service that would allow consumers to convert physical DVDs and Blu-ray discs to digital movies.

Reuters - Daily Investor Update: Exclusive: U.S., Britain set to agree emergency oil stocks release

Reuters Election 2012 Daily round-up of the day's top news from the campaign trail, the White House and all the politics in between

Wall Street rises, pushing S&P 500 above 1,400
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Thursday, with the S&P 500 topping the 1,400-mark for the first time since the financial crisis on a strong run of economic data.
U.S. jobless claims fall, manufacturing holds up
WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. economic growth showed signs of becoming more self-sustaining as the number of Americans claiming new jobless benefits fell back to a four-year low last week and manufacturing activity in the Northeast picked up this month.
Exclusive: U.S., Britain set to agree emergency oil stocks release
LONDON (Reuters) - Britain has decided to cooperate with the United States on a release of strategic oil stocks that is expected within months, two British sources said, in a bid to prevent fuel prices choking economic growth in a U.S. election year.
FERC settlement with Constellation largest since 2005
HOUSTON (Reuters) - Constellation Energy Group Inc's $245 million settlement with regulators over charges of power market manipulation includes the largest fine handed out by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission since 2005, the agency said on Monday.
TNT Express-UPS deal to come after Friday: sources
LONDON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - United Parcel Service and TNT Express are unlikely to announce a deal on Friday when they need to update the market about the status of their merger talks, three sources close to the talks said, but a deal could come soon after that.
MF Global customers may see more payback
(Reuters) - The trustee liquidating MF Global's broker-dealer is asking a bankruptcy court for permission to distribute an additional $600 million to U.S. exchange customers whose accounts were frozen when the futures broker collapsed.
China halts 10 more Airbus orders: sources
PARIS (Reuters) - China has suspended the purchase of 10 more Airbus jets, two people familiar with the matter said on Thursday, raising the stakes in a potentially damaging trade row over European Union airline emissions charges.
Carlyle advisor pleads guilty to NBTY insider trading
(Reuters) - A Chicago-based consultant on Thursday pleaded guilty to trading on confidential information about private-equity firm Carlyle Group's planned acquisition of vitamin company NBTY Inc.
UK should not delay too long on RBS sale: Hester
LONDON (Reuters) - Britain should not delay too long kick-starting the sale of its shares in Royal Bank of Scotland , the chief executive of RBS said, as speculation grows that the government could sell an initial stake at a loss.
IMF approves $36.7 billion bailout for Greece
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund on Thursday approved a 28 billion euro ($36.7 billion) bailout for Greece, part of a broader international rescue package for the debt-strapped euro zone member.