ASX at the close

Angus Nicholson for Chris Weston, Chief Market Strategist at IG Markets China’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) data has hurt sentiment in Asia and driven further downward moves in indices across the region. Commodities have been notoriously China data-sensitive of late, and after the impressive three-day rally seen in oil markets, it is not surprising to

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Uber vs regulators: the heavyweight bout of 2015

Cross-posted from The Conversation: Ride sharing, both the legal and “illegal” type is growing rapidly around the world, with new Australian entrant RideBoom the latest to take on market leader Uber. Uber, which began in San Francisco in 2009, now operates in more than 50 countries with 300,000+ driver-partners (as they are known in “uberspeak”)


RBA holds

by Chris Becker No surprise there, the RBA holds the official cash rate at 2%. The Aussie dollar climbed from near 71 cents to just over 71.50 before the print and not much else. Boring as bat poo. Cue boring statement: At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 2.0


Australia’s terms-of-trade falls to 9-year low

By Leith van Onselen Within today’s data dump of balance of payments data that feeds into tomorrow’s national accounts release for June was the important news that Australia’s terms-of-trade has fallen another 3.4% (seasonally adjusted) and 2.5% (trend) over the quarter to be down by 10.5% (seasonally adjusted) and 9.2% (trend) over the year (see


How APRA has changed investors’ ability to borrow

By Redom Syed, republished with permission from Property Chat: Last week the APRA chairman delivered a telling speech about the future of the lending market in Australia. The speech was the best public indication yet of what APRA is thinking, what they have done and what they’re likely to do next. Importantly, they also provided


CAD blows out, slashes GDP

by Chris Becker The 2nd quarter balance of payments was just released this morning and the current account balance blew out to $19 billion, almost double the prior quarter’s $10.7 billion and well above expectations. Significantly, net exports as a percentage of GDP is now an even bigger drag, at -0.6% instead of the expected


China manufacturing PMI lowest in 3 years

by Chris Becker The hits keep coming for those wedded to a strong China forever. The official manufacturing PMI print came out this morning at 49.7, the first move into contraction in six months. Non manufacturing PMI was at 53.4, slightly off the last print. Later this afternoon we get the Caixin manufacturing and services print,


A Coalition of whingers

by Chris Becker Following a Fairfax Media report yesterday that several cabinet members want Prime Minister Tony Abbott to dump Treasurer Joe Hockey, Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, has come out on the offensive this morning: “I think it would be helpful if some of the commentators in the area, in this space of politics, started


Manufacturing moves further out of recession

By Leith van Onselen Australia’s manufacturing sector strengthened further in August, with the Australian Industry Group’s Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI) rising to 51.7 points from 50.4 points in July: The manufacturing industry expanded for a second consecutive month in August, with the Australian Industry Group Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) increasing by


Perth apartments: fools gold for foreign buyers

By Leith van Onselen Perth Now has run an article claiming that foreigners are clamouring to buy “cheap” Perth apartments, with up to 40% of sales of new city complexes reportedly being snapped-up by Asian buyers: As Perth’s property market continues to decline, more developers are looking overseas to move stock and are now hiring


US bond yields keeping AUD/USD rallies subdued‏

Chris Weston, Chief Market Strategist at IG Markets There is an interesting dynamic at play today, with oil continuing to find huge upside price action and inflation expectations further stabilising at a time when a number of G10 central banks meet. One of those is the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), who meet today, and


RBA to hold, but only just

by Chris Becker It’s that crazy time again – predicting interest rate decisions from the RBA monthly meeting. It’s very hard to make predictions, especially about the future, but I think this one is in the bag: hold. Mainly because of ammunition required in the quarters and years ahead as we “sleepwalk into recession”. Let’s


Consensus arrives on pension assets test

By Leith van Onselen The AFR’s Joanna Mather has put together a nice summary of last week’s National Reform Summit, whereby consensus seems to have been reached on the need to include one’s principal place of residence in the assets test for the Aged Pension: At last week’s National Reform Summit, free-market and progressive think


CEDA revives flawed super-housing fix

By Leith van Onselen The Committee for Economic Development Australia (CEDA) has released a new paper, The super challenge of retirement income policy, outlining its plan for retirement reform. The paper argues that Australia’s ageing population and decreasing housing affordability means the current structure and policies in place may not be robust enough to ensure


Queensland’s slow housing recovery

By Leith van Onselen Below is a quick update on the latest fortnightly State Government data on housing transfers and mortgage lodgements for Queensland. As shown below, the number of housing transfers and mortgage lodgements (including refinancings) bottomed in December 2012 and has been rising gradually ever since, commensurate with Queensland housing prices: The number


A turning point for US inflation?

By Westpac’s Elliot Clarke: The lack of inflation in early 2015 has provided strong justification for the FOMC to hold off on policy normalisation, despite the unemployment rate signalling a labour market near full employment. Simply, on both a CPI (0.2%yr) and PCE basis (0.3%yr; the FOMC’s preferred measure), annual headline inflation is much closer


Links 1 September 2015

Global Macro/Markes If the Options Market Is Right, China’s Stock Rescue Is Doomed – Bloomberg World to Fed: We’re prepared for U.S. rate hike, so don’t delay – Reuters It’s a weak ray of sunshine trying to disperse dark clouds over mining sector – Guardian, Jericho Unlocking subsaharan Africa trade potential – Project Syndicate (interesting