Australia

Liberals close in on victory in Chisholm, Morrison secures majority government

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The Coalition has forged ahead in the previously too close to call seat of Chisholm, with more than 1,200 votes separating Gladys Liu from Labor's Jennifer Yang.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison is set to secure majority government with the Liberals expected to win several tight races, including the Melbourne seat of Chisholm and Malcolm Turnbull's old seat of Wentworth.  

While two seats are extremely close, the Australian Electoral Commission has awarded 77 seats to the Coalition which would give it a two-seat majority in the House of Representatives. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny on Sunday.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny on Sunday.
AAP

Labor is expected to end up with 68 seats and six MPs will sit on the crossbench, including three independents.

On Tuesday, the AEC website moved the Liberal-held seat of Chisholm out of the 'close seats' list, with Coalition candidate Gladys Liu forging ahead of Labor's Jennifer Yang with a margin of more than 1200 votes.

The seat was previously labelled 'too close to call' with only 166 votes separating the candidates.

Ms Liu is likely to become the first Chinese-Australian woman elected to the federal lower house. 

The lead comes after independent incumbent in Wentworth, Kerryn Phelps, conceded defeat on Monday to the Liberal candidate Dave Sharma on Monday. 

The AEC's projection is in line with ABC's election guru Antony Green, who believes the Coalition will also pick up Chisholm and Bass, while the Labor candidate in Boothby has conceded defeat to incumbent Nicolle Flint. 

Liberal candidate for Chisholm Gladys Liu at her campaign launch at the Box Hill Golf Club in Melbourne, Monday, April 15, 2019. (AAP Image/Mick Tsikas) NO ARCHIVING
Liberal candidate for Chisholm Gladys Liu is just ahead of her Labor rival.
AAP

The Liberals are ahead in Bass in Tasmania, while the ALP leads in Wayne Swan's former seat of Lilley in Queensland and Macquarie in New South Wales. 

In Cowan in Western Australia, Labor's Anne Aly is expected to win. 

Labor candidate for Cowan Anne Aly is ahead, but there is still a quarter of votes to be counted.
Labor candidate for Cowan Anne Aly is ahead, but there is still a quarter of votes to be counted.
AAP

Coalition win boosts banks

The Australian dollar firmed in the wake of the Coalition's surprise election victory, although the gains were pared in the face of Sino-US trade tensions and bets for a local rate cut.

The ASX 200 has been buoyed by the shock loss of Labor which had been planning changes to negative gearing and franking credits, as well as further changes to the financial industry. 

The financial sector surged $28 billion, with the Commonwealth bank up 5.2 per cent.  

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The 2019 Federal Election fallout: How Labor is dealing with its loss
The 2019 Federal Election fallout: How Labor is dealing with its loss

New ministry choices

While the prime minister was rarely flanked by his minister during the election campaign, he now he faces the task of deciding who will form his refreshed ministry and cabinet.

Several positions are up for grabs, including the women and industrial relations portfolios that were held by retired MP Kelly O'Dwyer.

The prime minister also needs a new Indigenous affairs minister, with former Northern Territory senator Nigel Scullion bowing out at the poll.

Australia needs a new human services minister too since WA MP Michael Keenan has stepped down.

Mr Morrison may look to boost the number of women in Cabinet with several fresh faces to choose from. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny speak to the media as they arrive at the Horizon Church in Sutherland.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny speak to the media as they arrive at the Horizon Church in Sutherland.
AAP

Women make up at least seven of the coalition's newcomers for the 46th parliament, with paediatrician Katie Allen replacing Ms O'Dwyer in the Melbourne seat of Higgins.

The Nationals' Anne Webster, the founder of an organisation that supports mothers, has won the Victorian seat of Mallee left open by Andrew Broad.

In western Sydney, psychologist Fiona Martin has taken over outgoing MP Craig Laundy's seat of Reid and community housing executive Melissa McIntosh has picked up Lindsay from Labor.

Former University of Notre Dame Vice Chancellor Celia Hammond is succeeding Julie Bishop in Perth's Curtin as the Liberals had hoped.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison celebrates a remarkable victory.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison celebrates a remarkable victory.
AAP

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