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How much businesses lose for a nothing day off


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MELBOURNE teams are in the AFL and NRL grand finals and the local merchants wish footy fever was less rabid.

Friday is a football holiday with traditional parade for the city in advance of the AFL showdown between the Western Bulldogs and the Sydney Swans.

And traders are crash-tackled by the occasion, according to a survey by the Australian Industry Group.

The overall cost to the state economy is at least $1 billion, the AiG calculates.

And one company calls the day off: A nothing holiday where we pay employees not to come to work.

The Victorian head of the AiG Tim Piper said today that during last years holiday 85 per cent of companies closed for the day. The average loss in revenue per business was $57,500 and ranged from $1000 to well over $500,000.

This year wont be much better.

Some 61 per cent of surveyed businesses said they planned to shut on Friday and anticipated an average loss of $16,000.

Those who stayed open faced a bigger wage bill because of public holiday penalty payments.

The average extra cost is expected to be around $9000 a business.

Some 51 per cent expected their revenue to be down by an average of around $16,000.

Some companies have decided they simply have no choice but to open, often because of national responsibilities or the need to keep faith with customers, said Mr Piper.

They will need to pay huge penalty rates to service the rest of the country as the consequences of closing are simply too great. But for them its become a shemozzle.

One large Victorian regional business has told AiG the extra costs resulting from the day are well over $200,000 and will mean a loss for the company for the entire month of September.

One company outside Melbourne is quoted saying: This holiday is forced on struggling small regional businesses Regional people do not travel to Melbourne to watch a parade, its just another day off.

And this: This holiday is a complete nonsense. And being based outside of the metropolitan area there is no benefit to our staff except a day off for no reason just another cost that our business has to bear paying staff to have another day off.

Thousands join home and car insurance campaign for better deal


´╗┐MORE than 16,000 Australian households have signed up to chase a cheaper deal on their home and car insurance.

The Big Insurance Switch campaign, run by consumer network One Big Switch, is aiming to attract 30,000 households to unlock group discounted insurance offers.

It says statistics show that the cost of home insurance has climbed 38 per cent in four years, more than four times the pace of inflation. And car insurance costs can vary by up to 80 per cent for similar cover, so it pays to shop around.

One Big Switch campaign director Joel Gibson says the campaign is going strong.

Were also ruffling some feathers, with everyone from insurance companies to insurance brokers and comparison websites coming out to criticise the campaign because it will make it easier for consumers to compare home and car insurance prices, he says.

We agree that no one should choose their cover based on price alone, but we think it should be easier to shop around on both price and product features.

Gibson says One Big Switch has received support from Senator Nick Xenophon and Labor Senator Katy Gallagher for a website that would make it easier to shop around for home and car insurance. The support in Canberra is building so watch this space, he says.

A One Big Switch survey found that one in three Australians have never switched home insurer and one in four had never switched car insurer.

Of those who had switched home insurance, almost nine out of 10 reported a saving of at least $100. Eighty-six per cent of car insurance switchers saved money, with half saving more than $100 and one quarter saving more than $200 a year.

There are millions of dollars in potential savings sitting on the kitchen tables of Australian families, and we want to help everyone to access them if they can, Gibson says.

One Big Switchs campaign will run for at least another week, and it aims to have group-discounted offers available soon after November 21.

To sign up go to this site

There is no obligation to take up any offer.

News Corp Australia and One Big Switch will earn a commission from any accepted deals. News Corp Australia is a shareholder of One Big Switch.