Maverick sparks electricity debate, latest tech listing prospect, super savings call and targeting the Chinese psyche

Energy maverick Gary Holden says it won’t take a single electricity buyer, as proposed by Greens/Labour, to cut prices for low income and low power users.

In today’s National Business Review print edition, Mr Holden – chief executive of independent electricity retailer Pulse Utilities who was forced to leave his job at Canada's Enmax in the wake of several spending scandals – gives his alternative to NZ Power; a plan which he says will lower prices for retail consumers but won’t seriously crimp incomes of the four big generator-retailer companies.

As part of NBR’s seven-page special report into fleet leasing, a fast-growing technology firm reveals its plans to launch in the US next year, and its consideration of listing on the NZX.

Economics editor Rob Hosking’s preview of current account figures due to be released next week uncovers a curious link between the current account deficit and the currency – plus one economist says a national savings boost, not necessarily a mirror of Australia’s compulsory scheme, is needed to deal with New Zealand’s external debt.

Technology editor Chris Keall burrows into the new suite of internet domain names, through start-up Dot Kiwi, and what it means for businesses.

As a major advertising agency launches a culturally-specific business unit in the coming weeks, Ad Media reporter Victoria Young outlines how smart advertisers are tapping into the Chinese psyche to better understand consumer perceptions and trigger points – including superstitions.

In NBR Property, a senior litigation partner talks about criminal liability under new health and safety laws – and what it means for the owners of earthquake-prone buildings.

Auckland-based tech company Rakon is blaming its Chinese business partner for releasing price-sensitive information to the market hours before the NZX-listed company sought a trading halt on its shares. Shoeshine probes the company’s recent history and gazes into a crystal ball.

In Order Paper, Rob Hosking discusses how the Labour leadership race has uncovered a great paradox of New Zealand politics – which political party tends to be more hidebound by traditions and tied to the past almost to the point of paralysis.

In Media Watch, David Cohen recalls Bauer Media Group’s promise it would be business as usual when it took over ACP Magazines – and why some staff have reason to feel nervous.

Editor-In-Chief Nevil Gibson’s Margin Call column drills into unprecedented foreign interest in New Zealand’s oil and gas exploration, and how it signals better times for investors.

All this and more in today’s National Business Review print edition. Out now.

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NZ Market Snapshot

Forex

Sym Price Change
USD 0.7951 -0.0014 -0.18%
AUD 0.9053 -0.0027 -0.30%
EUR 0.6279 0.0014 0.22%
GBP 0.4961 0.0018 0.36%
HKD 6.1674 -0.0107 -0.17%
JPY 85.2570 0.0180 0.02%

Commods

Commodity Price Change Time
Gold Index 1248.5 1.960 2014-10-21T00:
Oil Brent 86.2 -0.850 2014-10-21T00:
Oil Nymex 82.5 -0.270 2014-10-21T00:
Silver Index 17.5 0.195 2014-10-21T00:

Indices

Symbol Open High Last %
NZX 50 5233.1 5284.3 5233.1 0.89%
NASDAQ 4359.2 4419.5 4316.1 2.40%
DAX 8934.5 8957.2 8887.0 0.43%
DJI 16406.0 16620.8 16399.7 1.31%
FTSE 6372.3 6393.4 6372.3 0.29%
HKSE 23300.5 23460.8 23088.6 1.37%
NI225 15038.2 15195.8 14804.3 2.64%