MB Fund July Performance

July added another month of good performance to the share and bond market rallies that have driven markets higher throughout 2019. Our tactical portfolios continue to perform well vs other super funds: The issue we are facing in most of our portfolios is that we are positioned for negative outcomes, which means that we tend

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Weekend Links: 24-25 August, 2019 – MacroBusiness

Superb and Solid, Howard Arkley, 1998, Art Gallery of NSW   Saturday Morning news….. Trump Says He Will Raise Existing Tariffs on Chinese Goods to 30% – NY Times Trump calls on U.S. firms to exit China as trade war escalates – Reuters Trump raises tariffs on US$250 billion of Chinese imports to 30 per


Macro Afternoon

Asian stocks have shrugged off the poor confidence from overnight and are bidding higher going into the weekend close.  Chinese stocks are leading the charge with the Shanghai Composite up nearly 0.5% to 2897 while the Hang Seng Index is doing the same, up to 26173 points. Price had been threatening the high moving average on the daily chart, but buyers


AFR pundits need monetary policy schooling

Via Patrick Commins at the AFR: Speaking at an Australian Business Economists’ event in Sydney, Westpac Institutional Bank boss Lyn Cobley wondered why the RBA was even entertaining the idea of implementing experimental policy measures in Australia, such as a quantitative easing (QE) program of the sort implemented in the United States, Europe, Britain and


Bill Evans: RBA readying slash and burn rate cuts

Via Bill Evans a Westpac: The minutes of the Reserve Bank Board meeting for August provided one significant surprise. In the Governor’s decision statement following the meeting on August 6, the conclusion included “the Board would continue to monitor developments in the labour market closely and adjust monetary policy if needed to support sustainable growth


ANU confesses massive China data hack

Via the ABC: A Nobel laureate in dark energy scared the bejeezus out of Australia’s university chiefs and intelligence agency officials a fortnight ago. “I want my pain to be your gain so that you know what we are up against,” astrophysicist Professor Brian Schmidt said. He warned of an existential threat to free and


Blame APRA not RBA for any property bubble reflation

UBS’ Jonathon Mott is freaking out a little declaring that RBA’s cure of rate cuts may be worse the housing correction “disease”: With interest rates now ultra-low, the ability of the banks to generate a lending spread and return on equity is very challenged. It is possible that RBA rate cuts could lead to a


Is the interest-only mortgage cliff still an issue?

Via Martin North: Analysis released today by Digital Finance Analytics reveals that in the coming 12 months around 124,000 interest only loans will need to be switched to principal and interest loans. This is drawing data from our rolling household surveys. This translates to an estimated value of $47 billion, and represents a significant proportion


Mascot Towers bill explodes

Why would anyone buy an apartment today? Via the ABC: Unit owners in Sydney’s evacuated Mascot Towers building have learnt the repair bill could blow out to $20 million as construction engineers zero in on what caused the complex to crack. At an extraordinary general meeting in Sydney on Thursday night, the owners of units


ACCC should block gas cartel power play

Via the AFR: Oil and gas major Shell has triggered a major shake-up of the east coast electricity supply market, striking a $617 million deal to acquire business retailer ERM Power as it prepares for the radical disruption it expects throughout the sector because of the wide-scale shift to renewables. The agreement, struck at a


Labor discovers borders

Has it twigged? Via The Guardian: Labor is claiming that Peter Dutton has lost control of Australia’s borders, saying 80,000 people have arrived by plane to claim asylum since 2014. The new line of attack against the Morrison government – spearheaded by the home affairs spokeswoman, Kristina Keneally – comes as the ALP prepares to


Das: Volatility is warning

Via Bloomie comes Satyajit Das: But the unusual size of the moves — regularly on the order of 1 per cent to 3 per cent — is being heightened by something else: the struggle to find someone with whom to trade. The decline in trading liquidity is evident in several metrics. Volumes have declined. Since


Australia pivots from China as NSW Labor fastens to it

It’s MSM China madness today and about time. Crikey leads off with a new push to support hawkishness from John Fitzgerald, Emeritus Professor in the Centre for Social Impact at Swinburne: Senior Australian political figures can curse the American president as often as they please without fearing Trump will halt shipments of Australian beef or tell


Final auction clearance rate highest in 27 months

Last weekend, CoreLogic released its preliminary auction clearance rates, which revealed the following results: Yesterday, CoreLogic released its final auction results, which reported a 3.6% decline in the final national auction clearance rate to 73.0% – well above the same weekend last year (53.3%) and also above last week’s 67.8%: As you can see, Sydney’s final


Macro Morning

By Chris Becker  No room for optimism on overseas markets last night as the lack of direction in Asia yesterday translated into mild selling on both sides of the Atlantic. Treasuries sold off slightly while gold retraced on some slightly hawkish Fed comments. Looking at the action on Asian markets yesterday, where Chinese stocks were quite mixed


Pig iron Scott. Aussie iron ore building Chinese naval threat

This is where we don’t want trade wars to go. Via Herald Sun: Australian iron ore is suspected of being used to help build China’s next-generation nuclear-powered and ballistic-missile attack submarines, according to security and industry experts. Consignments from Australia’s booming iron ore exports to China are likely being diverted by Beijing into the steel


“Tiny home” closures push thousands into homelessness

Earlier this month, Australia’s mainstream media was awash with articles touting “tiny homes” as a solution to the nation’s growing homeless epidemic. For example, SBS News reported the following: A new Melbourne-based project is aiming to break the cycle of chronic homelessness by using otherwise vacant government land to build “tiny homes”. Independent community agency


International students should ignore bogus university rankings

The Academic Rankings of World Universities was released last week, which placed a record seven Australian universities within the world’s top 100: The ranking, produced by the China-based Shanghai­Ranking Consultancy, is regarded by most top universities as the most ­prestigious of the international rankings because it measures only excellence in research — mainly in the


Links 23 August 2019

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: World Bank Raises $33 Million Selling Ethereum-Based Blockchain Bonds – Be In Crypto Market top? Homemade mystery boxes are popping up on Etsy and eBay – VOX 3 Key Facts About Centralized Cryptocurrency – Medium Recession risks overblown? Money market funds’ AUM pass 2009 high – Bloomberg Americas: At


Macro Afternoon

Stock markets in Asia are oscillating between small losses and tiny gains, with traders looking to the Fed again as it holds it symposium tonight in Wyoming. Chinese stocks are quite mixed with the Shanghai Composite again hovering on another scratch session going into the close, up three points to 2883 while the Hang Seng Index is the


Property vendor discounting stabilises

Via CoreLogic: The vendor discount metric measures, for properties that sell below the initial list price, the difference between the original list price and the ultimate sale price. The metric is calculated as a median across a rolling 3 months of data. Within the past 3 months, housing conditions have started to stabilise but there