ACCC releases preliminary report into Google, Facebook and Australian news and advertising

With Google and Facebook transforming the way consumers communicate, access news and view advertising online, it is critical that governments and regulators consider the potential issues created by the concentration of market power and the broader impacts of digital platforms.

The preliminary report, published today, contains 11 preliminary recommendations and eight areas for further analysis as the inquiry continues.

NBN wholesale service standards inquiry enters next phase

The second phase of the ACCC’s NBN wholesale service standards inquiry will consider whether regulation is needed to improve customer experience.

NBN wholesale service standards are a key part of the commercial arrangements between NBN Co and retail service providers that affect the services to NBN customers.

A discussion paper, released today, highlights several issues to be considered, informed by feedback so far received by the inquiry and latest developments in the sector.

New analysis on petrol price cycles shows how motorists can save money

Petrol price cycles infuriate drivers but a new report out today explains how they work and ways that drivers in Australia’s five largest cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth) can save money by buying petrol at the bottom of the price cycle.

The ACCC’s Report on petrol price cycles in Australia, provides an in-depth look at how price cycles work and how motorists can use them to their advantage.

Petrol price cycles in Australia

A report on petrol price cycles in Australia, which examines how price cycles occur, how they have changed over time and how consumers can use them to save money when they buy petrol.

Dairy processors agree to amend farmer contract terms

Dairy processors Brownes Food Operations, Lion Dairy & Drinks, Norco Co-operative Limited, Parmalat Australia and Fonterra Australia have each agreed to amend specific terms in their milk supply agreements to address the ACCC’s concerns these terms were unfair to dairy farmers.

The ACCC has been working with dairy processors over the past year to ensure that terms in the contracts they offer farmers comply with the business-to-business unfair contract terms law enacted by the Australian Government in November 2016.

Competition law should remain focused on consumer welfare

ACCC Chair Rod Sims delivered a keynote address to the RBB Economics Annual Conference in Sydney today, debating whether competition law’s purpose should be expanded in light of the “hipster anti-trust” movement.

“For the last few decades there has been a broad consensus among those in the antitrust community around the world that competition law should promote some concept of “consumer welfare”; that competition law is primarily about making markets work for consumers,” ACCC Chair Mr Sims said.

“This has also been the position in Australia.”

ACCC identifies concerns about Bingo acquisition

The ACCC has released a statement of issues raising preliminary competition concerns about Bingo’s (ASX: BIN) proposed acquisition of Dial-a-Dump.

Bingo and Dial-a-Dump supply building and demolition (B&D) waste collection and processing services in the Greater Sydney area. Bingo and Dial-a-Dump are also future competitors for non-putrescible, or dry, landfill services when Bingo’s Patons Lane facility becomes operational in 2019.