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Ten Early News -

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(generated from captions) This program is captioned live.

Good morning. I'm Bill Woods. Welcome to Ten's Early News. Today's headlines:

The investigation begins into what

sparked a fire at Myer's flagship

store in Melbourne, which forced

the evacuation of 2,000 people.

Peter Costello takes aim at John

Howard in his long-awaited memoirs,

claiming he would have won the

election if he had been leader of

the Coalition.

In sport, rugby league celebrates

its season high-achievers with a

dramatic awards night.

In finance, a rebound in retail

sales casts doubt over an interest

rate cut in October.

The iconic Melbourne Myer store is expected to reopen m-this morning

after a fire that forced the evacuation of thousands of shoppers

and staff. Investigators are now

trying to work out what caused the

construction area. blaze, which started in a

Fire fighters rushed to the

historic Burke Street store fearing

the worst. The blaze threat yelped

to spread throughout the building,

forcing a mass evacuation, rarely

seen in Melbourne. The fire appears

to have occurred on level one to

five in the shaft, well away from

customers and staff. An early day

the off for staff, 500 forced to leave

the building. We thought it was

maybe a test or something and then

the beeps started happening and a

lot of people were told to evacuate.

A shock too for customers. Around

2,500 were herded out of the store.

It's a precaution more than

anything. As I said, they were

nowhere near the fire but you never

know what might occur. The blaze forced police to close roads in

the CBD, making it a long trip

home for many city workers. The

store will be inspected by WorkSafe

today before being reopened to

construction workers and the public.

One person has been killed, another

injured, in a house fire in Central NSW. The fire broke out at the home NSW.

yesterday in Spring Flat near Mudgee

yesterday afternoon. A body was

found in a rear bedroom while a 46-year-old man suffered minor

injuries and has been taken to hospital. A third person is missing.

They may not have been in the home

at the time.

A family has escaped a blaze at

their home in Brisbane overnight.

It broke out while they were

cooking dinner just before seven

o'clock. No-one was injured. The cause of that fire is still being investigated.

Former Treasurer, Peter Former Treasurer, Peter Costello,

has reportedly launched a scathing

attack on the Howard Government in

his political memoirs, to be

released next week. According to

News Limited, the 400-page book

claims the Coalition could have won

last year's federal election if Mr

Costello had been leader. The

former treasurer also says the

Coalition bungled three key issues

- reconciliation, the republic and

the rise of Pauline Hanson.

But there's no answer to the most

asked question - will Mr Costello

Liberal leader? contest the next election as

The search has resumed this morning

for an Australian hiker missing in

high way. 77-year-old John Parsons

set out on a track on the island of

Oahu last Thursday and hasn't been

seen or heard from since. It's

feared he may have slipped down a

ravine. Mr Parsons's children have

search. flown to Hawaii to help in the

Sometimes we're confident. Sometimes we're not. It just

depends. We're up and down. We're trusting God that he will help us

to find him and we're just praying

and believing that that will be so.

Mr Parsons's family says he's an

physical condition. experienced hiker and is in good

It's been revealed Australia's

spending on public education is the

second lowest among developed

nations. A new OECD report shows

while Australia performs well overall, there are longstanding

areas of underinvestment. Education

Minister Julia Gillard says the

study highlights the importance of revolution. the Government's education

The Government has come under

renewed pressure to provide relief

for seniors struggling on the aged pension. Even Prime Minister Kevin

Rudd has admitted he wouldn't be

able to survive on the meagre income. More than a million aged pensioners their retirement. can't afford to enjoy are often too expensive. Even simple pleasures No vino, no beer, no nothing. That's no surprise - is just $273 a week, the single pension well below other Western countries. With $50 rent assistance, it adds up to $323.

leaves just $63 a week - $200 for rent and $60 for food doctor's bills, prescriptions, for fuel or transport,

haircuts and phone costs. insurance, clothing, entertainment, he couldn't live on it. Even the PM admits almost impossible It would be, I think, the current single aged pension. to continue to live on

any extra relief but Kevin Rudd has ruled out in February, until after a review is completed a budget surplus even though the Government has of almost $22 billion. to look after Australia's pensioners Mr Rudd has the money available the outcome of another committee. and he shouldn't wait till Meg Palmer, Ten News. US President George W Bush has

announced the withdrawal of,000

American soldiers from Iraq by next

-- 8,000 American soldiers from

Iraq by next February, bringing the

number of troops in the country to

just under 140,000. The enemy in

Iraq is dangerous. We have seized

the offensive. Iraqi forces are

becoming increasingly capable of

leading and winning the fight. If

conditions continue to improve,

more troops will be brought home in

the first half of next year.

President Bush has promised to

Afghanistan. deploy more troops, though, to

Hurricane Ike is still lashing Cuba,

killing at least four people and

forcing massive evacuations. Ike

has sparked flooding in Florida.

Texas and Louisiana residents are

bracing themselves as the storm

heads to the Gulf of Mexico.

Ike may be skirting the Florida

Keys but it's powerful enough

tomorrow send a 3-foot storm surge

into the streets of Key West. Cuba

is feeling the full force for is feeling the full force for a

third day in a row. Officials work

to keep the death toll down.

Massive waves are pounding coastal

towns and villages. Thousands of

homes are damaged or destroyed.

Once Ike hits the open waters of

the Gulf, forecasters say it will

take aim at the Texas coast. With

land fall still several days away

and its path unpredictable,

everyone from Louisiana to Mexico

has been told to get ready.

Complacency is not the game to play

now. We are asking our citizens to

be prepared. Thousands of Texas

National Guard have been put on

standby and Louisiana is also

putting emergency plans in place.

Thousands there are still without

power after Hurricane Gustav and four powerful storm could spell disaster.

Manly's Matt Orford has been named

the National rugby league's player

of the year at last night's Dally M

awards. He edged out Melbourne's

Billy Slater in the final round of voting.

A chance for the players to trade their injuriesies for black tie their injuriesies for black tie as

their partners sparkled on the red

carpet. Some revealed their

wardrobe secrets. Actually, my mum

helped me. It's a bit sad but she

helped me today. Inside, Melbourne's Billy Slater and

Cameron Smith and Manly's Matt

Orford were all in contention right

up to the voting for the player of the year.

The Sea Eagles captain triumphed

with two votes to spare. I'm

serious, I'm shocked. Very

surprised, very honoured to be here

and to accept this. Look, yeah,

geez, lost for words. Canberra won

two awards. Neil Henry was voted

coach of the year while Alan Tongue

was named best captain. Chris Sando

was crowned the year's best rookie.

Roddy Eade says it will be a

wasted season if his team loses to

Sydney on Friday night. The Dogs

finished third on the ladder but

they'll be eliminated if they

can't beat the Swans. I think to can't beat the Swans. I think to go

out in straight sets makes it a

hollow season. We need to make a

stand and I would think we'd like

to win. Collingwood is confident

that Nathan Burns will be available

for the weekend's other

sudden-death semi against St Kilda.

Most r more gold for Australia at

the Paralympics in Beijing.

One-armed sprinter, Heath Francis,

won a world record to one the 200m.

He's got a gold medal, and the world record! It's absolutely amazing. We dream

about this as kids and to have it

happen to us is just amazing. I'm

living the dream. There was bad

news for Australia, though. Kurt

Fearnley's 4x100m relay team was

disqualified in the final after a fall on the track.

Let's talk about finance now. Jacqui, a surprising boost in retail sales.

Bill, absolutely. There was a

stronger than expected increase in

July. Sales rose 174%. In

seasonally adjusted term, that's

the largest monthly increase the largest monthly increase in

more than a year and well above

forecasts. Annually, retail sales

grew by 3.5%. Some industries

continue to suffer, though.

Spending on cafes, restaurants and

clothing is down. Meantime, the

August survey of business

conditions v has revealed a slight

improvement but for many firms, the

outlook remains bleak.

And the latest lending figures

show demand for home loans falling

for a sixth straight month. Just

over 50,000 people took out a new

lone in July, the smallest take-up

in four years. Hundreds of ANZ

managers are set to lose their

jobs as the bank carries out a

major restructure. The shake-up

will take place over the next few

months with ANZ boss Mike Smith

pledging to slash jobs in an

effort to rein in costs. Staff at

the bank have been told the first

and second layers of management will be targeted.

Briefly in other news, St George

Bank's CEO will step down once the

merger with Westpac is complete.

BG Group has abandoned it's $13.7

billion bid for original yip energy

after the deal struck with ConocoPhillips.

ConocoPhillips.

Amcor is likely to bid for a number

of packaging businesses being

offloaded by Rio and ABC Learning

has once again post popd the

release of its full-year profit results.

results. They're now expected by the end of the month.

A tumble in the price of crude oil

has weighed on Wall Street stocks

overnight. The Dow Jones is down

164 points while the NASDAQ has lost 40. European markets lost 40. European markets finished

in the red N Asia both the Nikkei

and Hang Seng shed almost 1.5% and

oil has fallen to a 5-month low

while gold is trading below $800

US a barrel. On the crosses, one

Aussie dollar buys: Here's the national Wednesday weather now:

checking the newspaper front pages,

the Adelaide 'Advertiser' has more on

on Peter Costello's upcoming

memoirs, which reportedly criticise

the government's handling of a

number of key issues.

The 'Financial Review' says that

financial planners are receiving

retention payments worth up to $300,000 as their funds suffer heavy losses. The 'Australian' reports Kevin Rudd

has flagged a major expansion of the Navy.

A foreign leader ordered to stand

down for hosting a cooking show.

We'll have the details when the Early News returns.

VOICEOVER: Recently moved to Canberra? Then you could win one of four $5,000 Service One Members Banking accounts simply by updating your Medicare address. The Australian Government uses population numbers to decide how much funding each community receives. And Medicare addresses are one way the population is counted. So update your address today by calling Medicare Australia on 132011. Then enter the draw at a Service One Members Banking branch or at somb.com.au and you could win $5,000 and help your community.

This program is captioned live.

This is Ten's Early News. Today's top stories:

Peter Costello launches a scathing

attack on the Howard Government in

his long-awaited memoirs, to be released next week.

The search resumes for a missing Australian hiker in Hawaii, with

fears he may have fallen down a ravine.

In sport, Manly's Matt Orford wins

rugby league's most prestigious award.

In finance news, it's not all doom

and gloom for the economy with

retail spending, housing finance and business conditions all improving.

First, Peter Costello's long-awaited memoirs will reportedly slam John Howard's

legacy, claiming the former

government bungled key issues, including reconciliation, the

republic and the rise of Pauline Hanson.

The book, to be launched NEC week,

is also expected to claim the

Coalition could have won last

year's election if Mr Costello had

been leader. Meantime, the former

treasurer has been criticised for denouncing the current government's economic management

while he was on a trip to the US.

There's been a dramatic slowdown in

Australia since the last election,

actually. When he goes offshore and

delivers us a lecture about the

state of the Australian economy. I

think, um, Mr Costello should

reflect on the conditions he left this

this Australian economy in. Treasurer Wayne Swan says Mr

Costello's arrogant for blaming

the slowdown on the Government.

morning into a fire at Melbourne's Investigation also begin this

iconic

iconic Myer store. 2,500 customers

and 500 staff were evacuated from

the building yesterday after a

blaze broke out in a construction

area. We thought it was maybe a

test or something and then the beeps

beeps started happening and a lot

of people were told to evacuate from

from the security guards. The from the security guards. The blaze

was quickly contained and the store

is expected to reopen today.

A teenage girl has been killed in a

car crash in Sydney's north-west

outskirts overnight. The

16-year-old was travelling in the passenger

passenger seat when the vehicle

left the road and slammed into a

power pole at Middle Dural at

around 11 pm. The driver and

hospital with minor injuries. another passenger were taken to

The family of an Australian man

missing in a rugged forest in

Hawaii fears he may have slipped

down a ravine. John Parsons went

hiking last Thursday and has not

been seen since.

John Parsons has been missing for

five days but his family aren't

giving up hope of finding the

77-year-old alive. His two sons and

join the search. daughters have flown to Hawaii to

Sometimes we're confident.

Sometimes we're not. It depends.

We're up and down. We're trusting

good that he will help us to find him and we're praying him and we're praying and believing

that that will be so.

The experience the climber set off

on a hike on the island of Oahu

where he was holiday being a friend

near Pearl City. He was last seen

by a pig hunter on the track but

air searches have failed to find

him. It's very overgrown and it's

difficult to see beyond the

established trail. It's steep,

overgrown, rocky terrain. overgrown, rocky terrain. Friends

and family fear the semi-retired

builder may have slipped down a

ravine. Went for a walk Thursday

morning, said he'd be back in three

hours and never came back. His

family continue to stop and won't

stop -- continue to hope and won't stop until he's stop until he's found.

A new report has found Australia's

spending on public education is the

second lowest amongs developed

countries. Julia Gillard says the study shows the need for the

Government's much-touted education

revolution. Ms Gillard says, while

performs well overall, there are

some areas of underinvestment.

Hurricane Ike has pounded Cuba for

the third day in a row, killing at

least four people. Officials have

evacuated more than a million

residents. The storm has flooded

parts of the Florida Keys and is

now headed west into the Gulf of

Mexico towards Texas, where

residents are bracing themselves

this week. for a direct hit, expected later

Pakistan's newly sworn in president

has vowed to work with Afghanistan

to fight terrorism. Just hours

after he took the oath of office,

asive, Ali Zardari held a joint

news conference with the Afghan news conference with the Afghan

President in which the two leaders

announced they would tackle the region's problems together.

Observers say the surprise move say

that war on terror is the new

leader's top priority.

The Prime Minister of Thailand has

been ordered to stand down for

hosting a cooking show. A court has

ruled that Samak Sundaravej

violated the constitution for

accepting money to appear on the program. Thousands of anti-grooft

protesters erupted in cheers at the

verdict. A new leader will be elected in 30 days. Australian country music singer

Keith Urban will take to the stage

in a star-studed concert to

celebrate New York Fashion Week.

The new dad took time out from

rehearsals to talk about clothes,

of course, and how baby Sunday Rose

has affected his music.

Performing as fashion weeks is a bi Performing as fashion weeks is a bit

a departure for the two-time Grammy

winner, Mariah Carey, Becyonce are

some of the decked-out divas

sharing the stage tonight but the

one star Urban is looking forward

to meet something Justin Timberlake

a fell yeo Tennesseeian. Since having our little girl and being

married, everything's just kind of

come into a new focus and I have a

profound. passion for it that is really

I play guitar more now than I've

ever played it. Why do you think

that is? Because I don't take f it

for granted but Keith Urban's

wardrobe hasn't changed much. How

would you describe your style? Your

fashion sense? Just comfortable. Mostly because I'm performing.

You've got to dress in something

right? you feel comfortable in and move in, you feel comfortable in and move in,

Rugby league first. The big night.

Manly skipper Matt Orford has won

the Dally M player of the year

award N a thrilling finale to the

count, three players were in

contention heading into the final

round of the year but Orford beat Melbourne's Billy Slater and

Cameron Smith to the prize. I

seriously... I'm shocked... um...

very surprised, very honoured...

um... to be here and to accept this.

Look, yeah, Geez... lost for words.

The other awards were not so

surprising. Canberra's Neil Henry coach

coach of the year. South Sydney's

Chris Sandow was named rookie of

the year. The AFL's man of the

moment, Lance Franklin has made a

rare media appearance and he admits

he's loving the spotlight of the finals. It's taken all season, but Hawthorn has finally put Lance Franklin in front of the cameras. And after bagging eight goals on Friday night, it's no surprise big Buddy loves September. To be out there with your 22 mates on the biggest stage of the year - I reckon. it's an outstanding place to be, have a number of sore players The Western Bulldogs after being thumped by the Hawks. it'll be a wasted season Coach Rodney Eade says

on Friday night. if they don't beat the Sydney Swans it makes it a hollow season, I think to go out in straight sets, A, make a stand, so we certainly need to - and B, I would think, like to win. recalling vice-captain Luke Ball St Kilda hasn't ruled out other sudden death semifinal for the weekend's against Collingwood. The Pies, meanwhile, are confident veteran defender Simon Prestigiacomo skipper Scott Burns and for the Saturday night clash. will both be fit The Socceroos are confident they

can adapt to the oppressive weather

conditions that have been forecast

for their World Cup for their World Cup qualifier

against Uzbekistan in Tashkent. The

match is expected to be played in

30 degree heat but the Aussies are

not phased.

That's not so bad. It's nice and

cool in the evening and warm during

the day, so it's very nice

conditions for football. Trained at

the stadium this afternoon and it

was a beautiful stadium. The match

tomorrow morning. kicks off in the early hours of

Well, it's not all doom and gloom

for yaunts economy with retail

spending, housing finance and

business conditions all improving.

With more let's cross to CommSec.

Good morning, Juliette Saly.

There's been a surprise increase in

retail sales. Do you think this is

likely to delay a cut in the

official cash rate. Good morning,

Jacqui. We think the Reserve Bank

will hold off until November before

cutting rates again. The economy is

soft but not as dire as previously

thought. Retail spending will its biggest

biggest increase in more than a year

in July, partly thanks to winter stock

stock take sales and also as the

cooler weather made us stock up on

clothing and blankets. We've seen

a pick-up in the number of people taking out home loans and business

conditions seem to be improving.

It's been a bumpy night on Wall

Street. What can we expect on our

market today? Unfortunately, it

looks like we're in for another day

of selling after Wall Street

slumped by almost 2.5% overnight.

We've also had weakness in

commodities, oil down $3, gold off

$19 and copper off 2% so it's one

step forward, one step back at this

stage. The futures is pointing to a

drop of 3%. Juliette Saly at

CommSec, thanks for judgment date.

Thanks.

British Energy giant BG Group has

officially abandoned its bid for

Origin Energy. The writing was on

the wall after the joint venture

signed between Origin and US-based

company, ConocoPhillips. Under the

deal, origin will send half of its

coal seam gas reserves to Conoco

and begin a Queensland LNG export project.

Centro Group has withdrawn the sale

of its $600 million Bankstown

sthopg centre. St George's CEO will

step down when the Westpac merger is complete.

The Index of Consumer Sentiment is

due out today.

Let's look at the forecast now around the nation today: Police investigate a "House of

Horrors" in Poland. We'll have the dames when the Early News comes back.

VOICEOVER: Recently moved to Canberra? Then you could win one of four $5,000 Service One Members Banking accounts simply by updating your Medicare address.

The Australian Government uses population numbers to decide how much funding each community receives. And Medicare addresses are one way the population is counted. So update your address today by calling Medicare Australia on 132011. Then enter the draw at a Service One Members Banking branch or at somb.com.au

and you could win $5,000 and help your community. This program is captioned This program is captioned live.

This is Ten's Early News. Today's headlines:

headlines:

Peter Costello taking aim at John

Howard in his long-awaited memoirs,

claiming he would have won the election

election if he had been leader of the Coalition. The investigation begins into what

sparked a fire at Myer's flagship

store in Melbourne. It forced the evacuation of 2,000 people.

In sport, rugby league celebrates

its season's high achievers with a dramatic awards night.

And in finance news, a rebound in

retail sales casts doubt over an

October rate cut. Former treasurer, Peter Costello,

has reportedly launched a scathing

attack on the Howard government in

his political memoirs to be

released next week. According to

News Limited, the 400-page book

claims the Coalition could have won

last year's federal election if Mr

Costello had been leader. The

former treasurer also says the

Coalition bungled three key issues

- reconciliation, the republic and

the rise of Pauline Hanson. But

there's no answer to the most asked

question - will Mr Costello contest

the next election as the Liberal leader?

The iconic Melbourne Myer store is

expected to re-open this morning

after a fire that forced the

evacuation of thousands of shoppers

and staff. Investigators are now

trying to work out what caused the blaze that started in a construction area.

Firefighters rushed to the historic

Burke Street store fearing the

worst. The blaze threatened to

spread throughout the building,

forcing a mass evacuation rarely

seen in Melbourne.

The fierp appears to have occurred

someone swr on level one to five in

the shaft, well away from the area

where our customers were and where our

our staff were. An early day off

for staff, 500 forced to leave the

building. We thought it was maybe a

test or something and then the

beeps started happening and a lot

of people were told to evacuate

from the security guards. A shock

too for customers, 2,5 hundred hub herded

herded from the store. It's a

precaution more than anything. It's

good to make sure they're not in

the building. You never know what

might occur. The blaze forced

police to close roads in the CBD

many city workers. making it a long trip home for

One person has been killed and

another injured in a house fire in

central NSW. Fire broke out in the

home near Spring Flat near Mudgee yesterday afternoon. A body was

found in a rear bedroom. A third

person is missing. They may not

have been in the home at the time.

A family has escaped a blaze at

their Brisbane home overnight. The

blaze broke out while they were cooking dinner just before seven

o'clock. No-one was injured. The

investigation. cause of that fire is still under

A 16-year-old girl has died when a

car slammed head-on into a power

pole in Sydney's north-west

outskirts. The teenager was a

passenger in the vehicle which left

the road before 11 pm last the road before 11 pm last night.

The driver and another passenger

suffered minor injuries. There

will be long delays in the

north-west of the city this morning

after a crash at Old Toongabbie

brought down power lines. West

bound lanes will be closed until

further notice.

The search has resumed this morning

for an Australian hiker missing in

Hawaii. 77-year-old John Parsons

set out on a trek on the I'll of

Oahu last Thursday and hasn't been

seen or heard from since. It's

feared he may have slipped down a

ravine. Mr Parsons's children have

search. flown to Hawaii to help in the

Sometimes we're confident and

sometimes we're not. It just

depends. We're up and down. We're

trusting God that will help us to

find him and we're just praying and

believing that that will be so. believing that that will be so.

The family says he's

The family says he's an

physical condition. experienced hiker and is in good

It's been revealed Australia's

spending on public education is the

second lowest among developed

nations. A new OECD report shows

while Australia performs well overall, there are longstanding

areas of underinvestment. Education

Minister Julia Gillard says the

study highlights the importance of

the Government's education revolution.

Hurricane Ike is still lashing Cuba, killing at least four people and

forcing mass evacuations. Ike has

also sparked flooding in Florida.

Residents in Texas and lease Koran

ya are now bracing themselves as

the storm is heading to the Gulf of Mexico.

Ike may be skirting the Florida

Keys but it's still powerful

Keys but it's still powerful enough

to send a three-foot storm surge

into the streets of Key West. Cuba

is feeling the full force of Ike

for the third day in a row. More

than one million people were

ordered to evacuate as officialed

worked to keep the death toll down.

Massive waves are pounding coastal towns and villages. Thousands of

homes are damaged or destroyed.

Once Ike hits the open waters of

the Gulf, forecasters say it will

take aim at the Texas coast but,

with land fall still several days

away and its path unpredictable,

everyone from Louisiana to Mexico

has been told to get ready.

Complacency is not the game to Complacency is not the game to play

now. We are asking our citizens to

be prepared.

House of Texas National Guard have

been put on standby and Louisiana

is also putting emergency plans in

place. Thousands there are still without power after Hurricane

Gustav and another powerful storm

could spell disaster.

Poland has been rocked by its open

"House of Horrors", with a man

accused of imprisoning his daughter for six years and raping

her repeatedly. The 45-year-old

also allegedly fathered two sons

with his 21-year-old daughter. The

man has been taken into custody and

DNA samples are being assessed.

This follows the case of Josef

Fritzl in Austria, who locked his

daughter in a dungeon for 24 years

and fathered her seven children.

The Prime Minister of Thailand has

been ordered to stand down for

hosting a cooking show. A court has ruled Samak Sundaravej violated the constitution for accepting

money to appear on the program. Thousands of anti-government

protesters erupted in cheers at the

verdict. A new leader will be

elected in 30 days.

Manly's Matt Orford has been named

the National Rugby League player of

the year at last night's Dally M

awards. The Sea Eagles skipper edged out Melbourne's Billy Slater

in the final round of voting.

A chance for the players to trade

their injuriesies for black tie as

their partners sparkled on the red

carpet. Some revealed their

wardrobe secrets. My mum helped me.

It's a bit sad. Inside, Melbourne's

Billy Slater and Cameron Smith and

Manly's Matt Orford were all in

contention town the final round of

voiting for the player of the year

award. The Sea Eagles halfback

triemftd with two votes to spare.

Look, I seriously, I'm shocked.

Um... very surprised. Um... very

hop order. Um... to be here and to

accept this. Look, yeah, I'm lost for words. Canberra

Canberra won two awards. Neil Henry

coach of the year and Alan Tongue

the season's best captain. Chris

Sandow from South Sydney was the

year's best rookie.

AFL and we're Bulldogs coach Rodney

Eade says it will be a wasted

season if they lose to Sydney on

Friday night. The Dogs finished

third on the ladder but will be

eliminated if they can't beat the

Swans. To go out in straight Swans. To go out in straight sets makes

makes it a hollow season. We need

to make a stand and I would think

we'd like to win. Collingwood is

confident that captain Scott Burns

will be available for the weekend's other sudden-death against skilled ya. other sudden-death semifinal

More gold for Australia at the

Paralympics at Beijing. One-armed

sprinter Heath Francis ran a world

record to win the 200m. The

complete set for Francis. He's got

the gold medal and the world record in 21.75!

That's just absolutely amazing.

Like, we dream about this as kids

and to have it happen to us is just

amazing. I'm living the dream. Not

so good news for Australia, though.

Kurt Fearnley's 4x100m relay team

was disqualified in the final after

a fall on the track.

Finance again. Jacqui, a boost in

retail sales. Not bad.

A stronger than expected increase

in July. We saw sales rise 1.4% in

seasonally adjusted terms t the largest

largest monthly increase in more

than a year and well above

forecasts. Annually, sales grew a

industries seasonally adjusted 3.5% but some

industries continue to suffer industries continue to suffer with

spending on cafes and restaurants

down. Meantime f the latest survey

of business conditions has revealed a slime-of-slight improvement a slime-of-slight improvement in

August but the outlook of many firms remains poor.

The late errs lending figures have

also been released, showing demand

for home loans falling for a sixth

straight month. Just over 50,000

people took out a new loan in July, marking a 4-year low.

are Well, hundreds of ANZ managers are

are set to lose their jobs as the

bank carries out a major

restructure. The shake-up is

expected to take place over the

next few months with ANZ boss Mike

Smith pledging to slash jobs in an

effort to rein in costs. Staff have

been sold the first and second

layers of management below Mr Smith

and his senior managers will be trimmed.

Briefly in other news, St George

Bank's CEO will step down once the

merger with Westpac is complete.

BG Group has abandoned its

$13.billion bid for Origin Energy

after the deal was struck with

ConocoPhillips. Amcor is likely to

bid for a number of packaging

businesses being offloaded by Rio

and ABC Learning has postponed the

release of its full-year profit

results again. They're expected by the end of the month.

has A trumble in the price of crude oil

has weighed heavily on Wall Street

stocks overnight. The Dow Jones is

down 280 points while the NASDAQ

has lost 60. European markets

finished in the red across the

board and in Asia both the Nikkei

and the Hang Seng should more than

1.5%. Oil has fallen to a 5-month

low and gold is trading below $800 US an ounce.

Let's get around the nation now for

the Wednesday weather:

Skheking the newspaper headlines.

The 'Herald Sun' has more on the

Melbourne. fire at Myer's flagship store in

The herald's business day reports

hundreds of middle management

positions are expected to be cut at

ANZ in the coming months.

The 'Daily Telegraph' says police

are struggling to deal with surging

surging rates of property crime in

some areas of NSW.

Keith Urban talks about fashion,

music and, of course, his new

daughter Sunday rosz. That story

when we return. NELSON... WITH YOUR LOCAL GOOD MORNING, I'M FIONA NEWS THE PUBLIC SERVICE IN FIRST UP, PEOPLE WORKING IN OFF, UNDER A PLAN TO GIVE CANBERRA, WILL BE BETTER PROTECTION TO PEOPLE BETTER SUPPORT AND SPEAKING OUT. THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SAYS, IT'S LOOKING INTO A NEW REPORT BY GRIFFITH UNIVERSITY, WHICH SHOWS 98 PER CENT OF WHISTLEBLOWERS GO WITHOUT SUPPORT FROM WITHIN THE AGENCY. SPECIAL MINISTER OF STATE, JOHN FAULKINER SAYS, NO

FAULKINER SAYS, NO CHANGES WILL BE MADE BEFORE FEBRUARY NEXT YEAR. THE CHIEF MINISTER, HAS UNVEILED THE LATEST DEVELOPMENT PLANS FOR CANBERRA'S NEWEST SUBURB. JON STANHOPE, HAS ANNOUNCED, THE RELEASE OF MORE THAN 14 HUNDRED BLOCKS OF LAND IN CRACE, BETWEEN BLOCKS OF LAND IN CRACE, BETWEEN GIRALANG AND PALMERSTON. CRACE, IS DESIGNED TO APPEAL TO CANBERRA FAMILIES, WITH 15 PER CENT OF HOUSE AND LAND PACKAGES, TO BE AVAILABLE FOR LESS THAN THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND

DOLLARS. A NEW NATIONAL SERVICE, IS ABOUT TO GET UNDERWAY, WHICH WILL HELP SAVE WATER FOR IRRIGATORS IN THE REGION. THE IRRI-GATEWAY, S-M-S SERVICE, WILL WORK WITH WORK WITH BUREAU OF METEOROLOGY, TO GIVE RECOMMENDATIONS OF WATER USE TO IRRIGATORS. AND IN SPORTS NEWS THIS MORNING, MARSHALL CHALK, WILL MAKE HIS RETURN TO THE RAIDERS SIDE THIS WEEKEND, RETURN TO THE RAIDERS SIDE THIS WEEKEND, FOR THE FIRST ROUND OF FINALS.

IT'S THE FIRST FINALS MATCH IN TWO YEARS FOR THE GREEN MACHINE AND CHALK, IS A WELCOME RETURN. THE RAIDERS UTILITY, IS RETURNING TO THE SIDE, AFTER AGGRAVATING A HAND AGGRAVATING A HAND INJURY. NOW HAVING A LOOK AT LOOK AT TODAY'S WEATHER... A HIGH PRESSURE SYSTEM WILL MOVE INTO THE TASMAN SEA SEA TODAY - AND A WEAKENING TROUGH LOOKS SET TO CROSS

REGION LATE TOMORROW.

LOOKING ACROSS THE NATION - A FINE SUNNY DAY AHEAD FOR CANBERRA -MOSTLY SUNNY IN SYDNEY AND MELBOURNE - LATE SHOWERS FOR PERTH AND ADELAIDE CLOSER TO HOME - PLENTY OF SUNSHINE ACROSS THE REGION - DUBBO CAN EXPECT A FINE AND SUNNY DAY WITH A TOP OF A FINE AND SUNNY DAY WITH A TOP OF 20 - MOSTLY SUNNY FOR BEGA MOSTLY SUNNY WITH AN EXPECTED TOP OF 13 FOR

BOWRAL - FROST THEN A SUNNY DAY FOR PERISHER

14 DEGREES ON THE WAY FOR COOMA - NOWRA CAN EXPECT 16 NOWRA CAN EXPECT 16 - CLOUD INCREASING AT THREDBO LOOKING AHEAD INTO THE WEEKEND - TOMORROW - WE'LL

HAVE A FINE DAY WITH AN OVERNIGHT SHOWER.

FRIDAY - THERE'S THE CHANCE THE CHANCE OF A SHOWER. SATURDAY - FINE AND PARTLY CLOUDY.

This program is captioned live. This

is Ten's Early News. Today's stories: Former treasurer, Peter Costello, launches a scathing attack on launches a scathing attack on John

Howard's legacy in his long-awaited memoirs.

The search resumes for a missing

Australian hiker in Hawaii, with

fears he may have fallen down a ravine.

In sport, Manly's Matt Orford wins rugby league's most prestigious award.

And in finance news - it's not all

doom and gloom for the Australian

economy with retail spending, housing finance and business

conditions all improving. But first, Peter Costello's

long-awaited memoirs will

reportedly slam John Howard's legacy, claiming the former

government bungled key issues,

including reconciliation, the

republic and the rise of Pauline Hanson.

The book, to be launched next week,

is also expected to claim the

Coalition could have won last

year's election if Mr Costello had

been leader. Meantime, the former

treasurer has been criticised

himself for denouncing the current

Government's economic management on

a trip to the United States.

There's been a dramatic slowdown in

Australia since the last election

actually. When he goes offshore and

delivers us a lecture about the

state of the Australian economy, I

think, um, Mr Costello should

reflect on the conditions he left this Australian economy in.

And the Treasurer, Wayne Swan, says

Mr Costello is arrogant for

blaming the slowdown on this Government.

One person has been killed, another

injured, in a house fire in central NSW.

NSW.

The fire broke out at the home in

Spring Flat near Mudgee yesterday afternoon.

A body was found in a rear bedroom.

A 46-year-old man suffered minor

injuries and has been taken to

hospital. A third person is

reported missing but they may not

have been in the home at the time. Investigations will begin this

morning into a fire at Melbourne's iconic

iconic Myer store. 2,500 customers

and 500 staff were evacuated

yesterday after a blaze broke out

in a construction area.

We just thought it was maybe a test

or something and then the beeps

started happening and a lot of people

people were told to evacuate from

the security guards. The blaze was

quickly contained and the store is expected to reopen today.

A teenage girl has been killed in a

car crash in Sydney's north-west

outskirts overnight. The

16-year-old was travelling in 16-year-old was travelling in the passenger seat when the vehicle

left the road and slammed into a

power pole at Middle Dural at

around 11 pm. The driver and

another passenger were taken to

hospital with minor injuries.

The family of an Australian The family of an Australian man

missing in rugged forest in Hawaii

fears he may have slipped down a

ravine. John Parsons went hiking

last Thursday and has not been seen or heard from since.

John Parsons has been missing for

five days but his family are not

giving up hope of finding the

77-year-old alive. His two sons and

daughters have flown to Hawaii to join the search. Sometimes we're confident and

sometimes we're not. It just depends. We're up and down. We're

trusting God that he will help us

to find him. We're praying and

believing that will be so. The

experienced climber set off on the

island of Oahu, where he was

holiday being a friend near Pearl

City. He was last seen by a pig

hunter on the track but air

searches have failed to find him.

It's very overgrown and it's difficult

difficult to see beyond the

established trail. It's steep,

overgrown, rocky terrain.

Friends and family fear the semi-retired builder may have

slipped down a ravine. Went for a

walk on Thursday morning, said he

would be back in three hours and

never came back. His family

continue to hope and won't stop until he's found.

A Ma jord of Qantas maintenance

workers claim the airline is cutting corners. They're also saying

they're having to recheck and

repeat maintenance and repairs done

offshore. A poll of more than 200

quap as workers comes after a

series of safety-related mishaps for the airline. US President George Bush has

declared that there is a dire situation. Hurricane Ike has

pounded Cuba for the third day in a

row, killing at least four people.

Officials evacuated more than a

million residents as the storm battered battered the island's capital,

Havana. The storm has flooded parts

of the Florida Keys and is now

headed west into the Gulf of Mexico

towards Texas where residents are

bracing themselves for a direct

hit later this week.

Australian country music singer,

Keith Urban, will take to the stage

in a star-studed concert to

celebrate New York Fashion Week.

The new dad took time out to talk about

about clothes and how baby Sunday

Rose has affected his music.

Performing at fashion rocks is a

bit of a departure for the two-time

Grammy winner. Mariah Carey,

beionsaway, Fergie and Rhianna are

some of the decked-out divas

sharing the stage tonight but the

one star Urban is looking forward

to meet something Justin Timberlake,

a fell yeo Tennesseeian.

Since having our little girl and

being married, everything has come

into a new focus, and I have a

profound passion for it.

I play guitar more now than I've

ever played it. Why do you think

that is? Because I don't take it

for granted. Fatherhood may have

affected his music but his wardrobe

has not changed much. How would

you describe your style? Just

comfortable. Mostly because I'm

performing, you know. You've got to

dress in something you feel

comfortable in and can move n right?

Well, the rugby league players scrub

up last night. Matt Orford has won

the Dally M player of the year

medal in a thrilling finale to the

award count. Three players were in

contention up until the final round for

for the year.

Orford meet Billy Slater and

Cameron Smith to the prize. I seriouslyam shocked.

Very surprised, very honoured to

be here to accept this. Lost for

words. Canberra's Neil Henry was

coach of the year. South Sydney's

Chris Sandow was the rookie of the year.

The AFL man of the moment, Lance

Franklin, has made a rare media

appearance and he admits he's

loving the spotlight of the finals. It's taken all season, but Hawthorn has finally put Lance Franklin in front of the cameras. And after bagging eight goals on Friday night, it's no surprise big Buddy loves September. on the biggest stage of the year - it's an outstanding place to be, I reckon. The Western Bulldogs have a number of sore players after being thumped by the Hawks. Coach Rodney Eade says it'll be a wasted season if they don't beat the Sydney Swans on Friday night. I think to go out in straight sets, it makes it a hollow season, so we certainly need to - A, make a stand, and B, I would think, like to win. St Kilda hasn't ruled out recalling vice-captain Luke Ball

for the weekend's other sudden death semifinal

against Collingwood. The Pies, meanwhile, are confident

skipper Scott Burns and veteran defender Simon Prestigiacomo will both be fit for the Saturday night clash. Nathan Templeton, Ten News.

The Socceroos are confident they

can adapt to the oppressive weather

conditions that have been forecast

for their World Cup qualifier

against Uzbekistan in Tashkent. The

match is expected to be played in

30-degree heetd but the Aussies are

not too concerned. It's not too bad.

It's very nice conditions for

football. We trained at the stadium

this afternoon and it was a beautiful stadium.

The match kicks off in the early hours of tomorrow morning.

Well, it's not all doom and Well, it's not all doom and gloom

for the Australian economy, with

retail spending, housing finance and business conditions all

improving. With more, Juliette Saly

from CommSec joins us live. Good morning again.

There's been a surprise increase in

retail sales. What do you think the

likely implications are for

interest rates? These figures show

that the economy is still soft but

not as dire as previously thought.

We think the Reserve Bank will hold

off until November before cutting interest rates again. interest rates again. Retail spending had its biggest monthly

increase in July in more than increase in July in more than a

year thanks to the winter stock

take sales. The fact that

speculation that interest rates had

peaked saw a pick-up in home loans

and in business confident. Wall

Street stocks have tumbled

overnight. Can we expect our local

market to follow that lead today?

It doesn't look pretty for our

market today. The futures is

pointing to a drop of 3%.

Financials were heavily sold off on

Wall Street. That sent the Dow

Jones off by 280 points or 2.5%.

We'd expect our banks to also be

under pressure and unfortunately

our mining and energy stocks too

after big falls in commodities,

Jacqui. It looks like we're in for a bumpy ride today. Thanks, Juliette Saly from CommSec. Thanks.

BG Group has officially abandoned

its bid for Origin Energy. The move

was anticipated following a $9.6 billion

billion venture signed between

Origin and US-based company, ConocoPhillips.

Briefly in other news, Centro Group

has withdrawn the sales of its $600

million Bankstown shopping centre.

St George Bank's CEO is set to

accept down when the merger with

Westpac is complete. Qantas is

refusing to follow Singapore

airlines lead and cut fuel prices.

Rangers in the United States have

been faced with an unusual problem

- a young bear stuck all tree.

They're normally good climbers. An

air mattress was brought in to

cushion his fall and they had to

shoot him twice. His drowsy descent

was not graceful but apart from a

few minor scratches, he came away

relatively unscathed. There is

such a thing as a drop bear.

The forecast today: Recapping this morning's top stories:

The investigation begins into what

sparked a fire at Myer's flagship store in Melbourne.

Peter Costello takes aim at John

Howard in his long-awaited memoirs,

claiming he would have won the

election if he'd been leader of the Coalition.

That's it. I'm Bill Woods. I'll be

back with the 11 o'clock

back with the 11 o'clock bulletin. Have a great day. Supertext Captions

by Red Bee Media Australia. www.redbeemedia.com.au