Here are today’s headlines from the S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX: XJO)(ASX: XJO) and Australian finance circles.

First, here are the data points:

Australian Dollar ($A) (AUDUSD): 72.52 US cents

Dow Jones (DJI) : down 0.7%

Oil (WTI): $US72.20 per barrel

Gold: $US1,203 per ounce

Australian Finance News

Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC), Australia’s second-largest bank, is expected to deliver a rude surprise to property investors, Fairfax Media reports. It’s believed Westpac could be about to pull the rug from underneath property investors who use the bank for funding their investments. Westpac refutes the claims, “We don’t support the claims made regarding the Westpac customer communications.” 

While it may or may not be true, it’s a spooky headline. And the major banks’ lending practices are in the limelight with the recent Royal Commission revealing some troubling truths. Moreover, concerns over property prices are bubbling away in the background.

Read next: What 40% Property Price Fall?

In sharemarket news, Google parent Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOG) is under fire for allegedly logging people into the Chrome browser without their consent. Big tech companies are constantly under scrutiny for privacy concerns, given users will often unwittingly submit data without reading updated policies. Google said the automated log-in only applies to users who accepted the syncing, according to BusinessInsider.

Google was recently handed a $5 billion fine by the European Union for pre-installing certain apps on its devices.

Nufarm Limited (ASX: NUF) shares have entered a trading halt on the ASX as it undertakes a capital raising. No explanation was provided but in July, the $2 billion chemicals company revealed dry weather had “significantly impacted the ANZ business”.

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