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Australia sets May 18 election date

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on April 11, 2019 - Duration: 01:30s

Australia sets May 18 election date

Australians go to the polls in a general election on May 18, Prime Minister Scott Morrison says, firing the starting gun on a campaign expected to be fought over taxation, climate change and inequality.

Rough cut (no reporter narration).

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Australia sets May 18 election date

(ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION) Australians go to the polls in a general election on May 18, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Thursday (April 11), firing the starting gun on a campaign expected to be fought over taxation, climate change and inequality.

Opinion polls show Morrison's conservative coalition trailing the opposition Labor party after six years in power and two prime ministers toppled by internal party ructions.

While the government has framed the election as a referendum on its record of managing Australia's finances, the economy shows signs of beginning to slow.

Consumer spending has weakened as home prices fall after a prolonged property boom and high debt levels weigh on sentiment.

Financial markets are fully pricing in the probability of at least one interest rate cut later this year.

A pre-election budget included tax cuts for low and middle-income earners and record spending on health and education while promising the first budget surplus in more than a decade.

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