Word on twitter is there is due to be an announcement of a budget shortfall by the Federal Government and while not all the revenue raising measures are intrinsically bad (eg raising money for a bank deposit insuance scheme), it does suggest the government is struggling to contain the downturn. And it makes a mockery of the previous obsession with surpluses...and sticking with a theme here note it is bad for banks in the short term (though they may appreciate a bailout at some point...!)
Treasurer Chris Bowen is expected to reveal a $30 billion black hole in revenue when he releases Labor's economic statement today in Canberra at 1300 AEST.
The economic statement will include a new levy on the banking industry, an increase in tobacco excise and reportedly more help for the car industry.
Confirmation that the statement will be released today has heightened speculation that Prime Minister Kevin Rudd could call the election this weekend.
The nation's banks are set to cut interest rates paid to savings accounts to soften the hit from the planned new government levy on deposits.
The levy would build a fund to protect deposits with the level set at $100,000. Presently, banks pay the government a fee to guarantee deposits over $250,000.(here)