Weekend Reading: 13-14 April 2019

Global Macro / Markets / Investing:










…And furthermore…


      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Hardly ever first.
        Some of us need to have our beauty sleep in anticipation of the morning ride, speaking of which, calling —-
        AFUND, — W.E. ride report.
        Wrongly assumed it was Shorty tagging along but lo and behold it was Mike who said he hadn’t ridden since with us a year ago. To rub salt in the wound he beat both of us up the hill which caused my immediate hypocritical retaliation accusation of secret training. His defense being his hard gym leg workouts and mountain biking. One consolation was that I didn’t have to relinquish my unbeaten smaller hill Forrest Way crown.
        Bike is running smooth atm, new cluster 11-30, new chain, new crank axle bearings, new Cat Eye 500LM light.( the lower gears threw me a bit this morn). When changing the bearings the BB (bottom brackets) came so Ioctited them in, if you do that don’t use super strength, thread locker is what you want. BTW, cheaper clusters run smoother than Dura ace.
        How are you faring ?

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        That was supposed to be 11–28,( too much of a hurry for my caffeine fix) no wonder people have more than they should.

      • @BE .. that bloody secret training …. we did 101k today, but that was it for the week. The boys have been sick through the week, and I’ve been working my butt off so dog tired every day. It was a killer today (just tried) … perfect conditions here and hardly any wind 3knts earlier and maybe 6 knts later, but for Melbourne that’s rare. A few close calls with cars which really p1ssed us off. One on a round about and a dual cab doing 80-90 in a 60 zone who must have been on some illegal stuff as he nearly took us all out and we were single file in the bike lane. There was a lot of cursing after that. Great coffee and sausage roll so we’re all fired up for tomorrow. Well done to you anyway as there is always some better. One of our guys is a gun and we rarely get him…in fact only once :))

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Did 12 laps secret N Head training but will have to up the ante and try for 20 laps. Only velodrome when at Central Coast though, as the roads there have great cycle ways until the round about’s, then they merge with traffic, a highly dangerous design. Was hit by a car couple of years ago at DY and don’t need that hospital scenario again. Mike must have expended all his energy on the hill as we blew him away on the Forrest Way one, so tactics demand more hill endurance as per 20 laps although my speed isn’t particularly fast as those high gears don’t allow it,and not prepared to sacrifice m/mass for cadence.
        Nearly bought a house in Collaroy with great sea views for 10k mid 70’s but tried to scam lower interest rate to first house buyer meaning non disclosure of already owning a house, which in turn meant no required deposit available. The old cottage was half way up Alexander St ( a very steep hill) and at that time WA houses with a view were at a premium but Sydney had no appreciation of any view. There was a guy in Mosman buying a lot of properties positively geared in that era, only met him once so do’t know what happened after. Did try for another at Balgowlah but got gazumped, so it wasn’t all that easy in those days either. Generally 4 times the price of other cities except for those bargains mentioned earlier.
        Simon got squeezed by a ute this morn but all Mike could say was he loved its hot V8 note. One thing he did say was disc brakes were safer on long descents a rims can overheat and break apart.
        Good luck tomorrow and keep safe, better late than never.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Just remembered, the Balgowlah place was located on a rat run bypassing Sydney Road on a corner below the road level so a car could have landed on the house roof if it over shot, still a kings ransom at $40,000, a bargain at the time compared to others less precarious,

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        EQUATION No 1
        Baby boomer family + owned more than one house = bad persons.
        EQUATION No 2
        Any family + owns more than one car = in future, perceived bad persons ?
        Years ago there seemed to be more houses than families so a lot of people had a holiday home left vacant most of the year.
        Today there seems to be more cars than couples so in 40 or 50 years will they be condemned if the ratio changes.
        Anything considered normal and acceptable today may not necessarily be so in future by the next younger generation.

      • @BE ….went out very early and did 65k, and it was good again with little traffic, but the wind was a big stronger. Generally really good.

      • @triage BE …I haven’t been to the doctors for about four years now, but I also gave up alcohol which I read now can really screw you. I was hitting the bottle heavily to get through my daughters anxiety. But if anyone has seen that happening to a child it’s chilling at the extremes. Triage I don’t know how I’d go now without the exercise now. BE I got called out this arvo to do another 50k to go see a triathlon, and on the way back we saw one triathlete loading up his bike on the his car while his girlfriend was blowing cig smoke in to the car like the old Newcastle BHP steel mill. Everyone nearly feel off laughing. The day just got better as well and I’ve just got home. Also kudos on the training.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        You’re the one that deserves the kudos for that double ride day, but watch out for over training, bad for your health, mental and physical.

    • Sitting on the couch listening to some David Bowie, wild is the wind.


      I am not sure what it is yet, but the new Arctic Monkeys album and the song Ultracheese really channels Bowie.


      Some people don’t like the new album but I love it.

      When I listen to it, I feel like I’m back in a Chicago Jazz club holding a smokey scotch and even though I don’t smoke a fat cigar in my hand.

      Harry knows what’s up!

      • I saw the AM’s at the Reading Festival in 2006 and they were brilliant. But my favourite was Pearl Jam. The line up that year was epic. I really miss that part of Europe where you could see all the big bands easily….short flight away. The other one was Womad until they moved it from Reading west up the M4 near the A34 in a field and it was really sh1t in the rain, and f all transport,

      • Yeah I really miss that about Europe also. The wife and I saw Kasabian like 5 times live simply because they kept visiting Ireland and paying gigs. I think they came to Australia once. My friend got to see them then and was blown away. I said yeah I see them like every 2 months lol.

        I saw AM in 2005 at Festival Hall. 2011 at Oxygen and 2019 in Sydney. Always a great show. I love how each album is different to the last.

    • I’d be sceptical. Why not announce it and reap the benefits — global risk on!

      The only other angle I can think of is that announcing it might pressure the Yuan. That 7.00 line in the sand won’t last forever.

  1. Here’s an article from today’s West Australian newspaper by journalist Jack Houghton about electric cars.

    ‘Norway has been heralded by Labor and Tesla chief executive Elon Musk as the Utopian example of successful electric vehicle policy but new modelling shows the country is losing $500 million a year subsidising the market.
    Electric vehicle sales in the Scandinavian country hit 58 per cent of new car purchases this year but those still driving combustion engine cars have been left with the bill
    The tiny country supplements its green initiatives in part through CO2 and road taxes on fuel which have pushed the petrol prices to an eye-watering $3 a litre, among the highest in the world.
    The average Australian uses 102.5 litres of fuel a month, which costs them $143.5 in total, according to consumer website Canstarblue.
    If Australians paid Norwegian rates, that figure would rise to $309.55 a month, or an extra $1992.55 a year in fuel prices.
    The cost of filling the tank on a Mazda3, the most popular new family vehicle on the market, would jump from $71.40 to $154.02. Any Norwegian wealthy enough to fill an entire Toyota Hilux 80-litre tank would need $241.
    Other costs to taxpayers came from increasing taxation on combustion engine vehicles and offering perks to green drivers, including free parking and full access to bus lanes in some cities.
    In the capital Oslo a toll on gas and diesel cars entering and leaving the city increased by 74 per cent. It led to a 4000-person protest in 2017.
    The Oslo local government tried to ban all cars from its CBD, which led to more protests until it backed away from the proposal.
    Instead, motorists were banned from parking in the CBD.
    Mr Musk and Labor deputy leader Tanya Plibersek have pointed to Norway as a case study for Australia’s transport future but both failed to mention the significant economic caveats required for the transition.
    “Norway has already proven it could be done last month … no question Australia could do this in far fewer than 11 years,” Mr Musk tweeted this week.
    Norway also achieved the feat by tapping into the world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund, valued at $1.4 trillion, which was earned from exporting oil and gas around the world.’

    The elites could have zero net immigration to address the pollution problem, instead of imposing more progressive ideology on the people.

    • Good exposé on Norway.

      I have always felt that it is silly to allow electric cars to use bus lanes. That handout will be hard to unwind – just look at negative gearing in Australia.

      And Australia is 7.692 million km² (mostly desert) while Norway is 385,203 km².

      Norway needs cycleways:

      the city adopted the goal of 50 percent “sustainable mode share” by 2020 — half of all trips in the city taken by walking, biking, or transit rather than automobile.

      Fun fact: The city hit that target in 2015, five years early.


    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      Jack Houghton eh? Given his past scribblings I’m really going to have to see how he got his numbers and how everything compares because he’s got a great big long history of just making sh!t up.

    • As an idea it is excellent.
      But it is apples and oranges. Nope rather apples and boulders.
      If all of 25mil of Aussies lived in the narrow stretch from Mel to Syd along the freeway perhaps coercing people into electric car use would make some sense.
      Plus .we blew our “sovereign wealth” on neg gearing, cgt discounts, fhb grants and tax discounts.
      For starters we could do bucketloads by enforcing a number of seemingly little things like house thermal efficiency to to centuries old Norvegian high level.
      If Aus can achieve average Norvegian household energent efficiency we’d be going further faster than any other counter cultural coercion. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.
      My point is that there are plenty more simpler, quicker and less expensive things to do before we tackle one of the hardest applicable change for Aus model.

      But above all, why clutch to the sinking boat and a loony nutcase when there are bucketloads of other proper car manufacturers about to flood the market with properly made EV cars.

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      It is hilarious that conservatives have latched onto this idea of half new cars sold in *2030* as some fantastical objective requiring massive levels of coercion to achieve when the reality is that it’s a pretty soft goal that will probably be reached (or only just missed) without any specific influence at all.

      Electric cars are a drop-in replacement for the majority of people today, by 2030 they’ll be near the same price-points as ICE vehicles today, the difference made up by lower running costs.

      Just goes to show there’s no thought at all from these people, just knee-jerk reactionary opposition to any ideas from “them”.

      • The latest Mazda 3 will have a Skyactiv X petrol engine that is 20 to 30% more fuel efficient than current petrol engines.

        So the fuel tax is being eroded bit by bit. When will the fake Greens put in a land tax to fund the roads?

      • I see evidence of Harold being part of the testing team. Clearly lost interest in driving and started drawing on that water tank or whatever it is. Second photo.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        I’m guessing by the 400 miles SF to Yosemite plug there’s a certain demographic they’re aiming at…

        EVs are going to be interesting. When Tesla arrived I thought new makers would consume the old dinosaurs but after recent unpleastness maybe the old dogs still have some fight. See I-Pace and the Hilux above. Will we see a Rivian v electric Hilux long term battle or will the disruptors fall to the wayside after doing the good work?

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Yes nikola, there’s nothing like a chance of drawing a large doodle on the side of a building to drag a shut-in into the great outdoors.

        Also, does a silent 4×4 increase the chances of sneaking up on a proud and noble wild animal and killing it?

      • good point MB. I have been thinking same. I believe some better new starters might get bought by the established players in order to catch up with rest of the pack. Some will just go bankrupt. Toyota is clearly opting to develop its own but there are lot of Euro brands that will are way behind the curve and may opt to acquire companies like Rivian.
        Even Tesla might be forced to sell as they do experience serious financial stress. And that is if anyone wants to buy them and Elon’s ego does not get in the way.

      • MB – I haven’t killed any noble animal. I shoot pigs, rabbits, wild cats and foxes who have been introduced in Oz and are causing lot of damage to native flora and fauna.
        Have shot few roos I came across that have been badly injured by other shooters and left to suffer for weeks before they die.
        But to answer your question, I think such vehicle will allow to get closer to the target – means lot less walking looking for one but I doubt will allow anyone to sneak close enough to shoot at a Stag for example.

      • Some lumbering shiny whiny alien thing coming at you….. You’ve only got to break a light stick underfoot & anything that’s wary is gone!

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Colin, anyone who has spent more than an hour in the bush knows that.

        There’s millions that don’t.

      • “Gasoline prices: We show prices for Norway from 31-Dec-2018 to 08-Apr-2019. The average value for Norway during that period was 16.07 Norwegian Krone with a minimum of 15.72 Norwegian Krone on 31-Dec-2018 and a maximum of 16.72 Norwegian Krone on 08-Apr-2019. For comparison, the average price of gasoline in the world for this period is 12.71 Norwegian Krone.”

        So, 1 kroner =0.16 AUD
        At average of 16.07 kroner = $2.57 AUD

        In October 2017 it was 2.27 US dollars a litre in Norway, multiply it 1.4 to convert AUD = $3.17 litre.
        Though to be fair, the Australian exchange rate then was 1.26 to US dollar, so about $2.86 AUD a litre in late 2017.

        Fill er up mate!

      • smithy – your link just shows petrol prices makes no connection with electric vehicle taxes.

        In 2013 the average US price for a barrel of oil was 105.87.
        In 2019 the average US price so far for a barrel of oil is 61.29.
        You seem to be implying that high oil price in 2013 makes high price fine today, even though barrel of oil is nearly half price.

        The point is petrol price in Norway is much higher than it would otherwise be, assuming “…road taxes on fuel…” means increased tax on petrol prices.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        smithy – your link just shows petrol prices makes no connection with electric vehicle taxes.

        Yes. Because the point is that fuel in Norway has been expensive for a very, very long time.

        The point is petrol price in Norway is much higher than it would otherwise be, assuming “…road taxes on fuel…” means increased tax on petrol prices.

        No, the point is that Norway’s fuel has always been relatively expensive. Here’s another one from 2005:

        It’s not just petrol, either. Norway is one of the most expensive countries to live in globally:

        (The is a common problem with democratic countries that like to do pinko-commie things like plan for the future.)

        However, Houghton’s argument, is that Norway’s fuel has become (or remained) expensive to drive uptake of electric vehicles (and punish non-electric car owners) and this is what will happen here. It is either a deliberate lie, or an incorrect conclusion due to lack of research and basic thought – given the source, either is possible, though the former more probable.

      • smithy – “…The tiny country supplements its green initiatives in part through CO2 and road taxes on fuel which have pushed the petrol prices to an eye-watering $3 a litre, among the highest in the world..”

        I think this part of the article might of been a bit clearer. I initially read it as new eco tax

        However in 2014 petrol tax made up 58% of the cost of a litre of fuel and has gone up since then but I can’t find any article that show what taxes are today. What the article says is true, that petrol at around $3 a litre is very expensive and is made up mostly of taxes some of which goes to green initiatives.

        “However, Houghton’s argument, is that Norway’s fuel has become (or remained) expensive to drive uptake of electric…”

        I disagree, the high fuel price is a negative for combustion engine owners, Houghton was just highlighting the plight of the long suffering combustion engine owners in little Norway, the incentives to drive electric car uptake had more to do with other taxes, charges and tolls on combustion car owners and the same taxes,charges and tolls removed or reduced for electric car owners.
        By the way, most electric car owners still have their combustion engine cars, they use them on the longer country trips, they use the electric car in the city because no tolls, parking fees etc, .

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        I disagree, the high fuel price is a negative for combustion engine owners, Houghton was just highlighting the plight of the long suffering combustion engine owners in little Norway, the incentives to drive electric car uptake had more to do with other taxes, charges and tolls on combustion car owners and the same taxes,charges and tolls removed or reduced for electric car owners.

        Right. So the situation for petrol car owners has not changed, but it is better for electric car owners.

        Houghton is merely echoing the current conservative hysteria about electric cars, itself triggered by nothing more substantive than the knee-jerk response to oppose anything those damn lefties suggest.

        By the way, most electric car owners still have their combustion engine cars, they use them on the longer country trips, they use the electric car in the city because no tolls, parking fees etc, .

        Yes ?

    • There’d be riots in this country if any pollie gave this serious thought. Canberra would burn.

      Progressives may be granted a lot of airtime in the media but the actual numbers of them are tiny. Strayans love their cars and their 4x4s in particular. And public transport is sh!t to non-existent. For this to work, the Govt will have to work overtime to import millions of Jenny Leongs and freeze out the original rednecks. Literally change the country culturally — PDQ.

  2. Hugh PavletichMEMBER


    … A glimpse of the unnecessary destructive and disruptive flight to affordability … and the deepening public intolerance of urban governance / planning failure …essential viewing …

    Otago and Southland experience booming property prices as Auckland’s dip … TVNZ


    Miserable end to summer for the housing market, especially in Auckland where March sales volumes were down 18% compared to March last year … Greg Ninness … Interest Co NZ


    The housing market appears to have had a miserable end to summer with the number of sales in March slumping by 12.9% compared to March last year, according to the latest data from the Real Estate Institute of NZ. … read more via hyperlink above …
    … as new housing production lifts … allowing the more efficient new housing production industry to be restored (the United States, Canada and Australia maintained theirs all along) … and the grossly inefficient and costly cottage building industry to retreat …

    New dwelling consents are particularly strong in Auckland led by growth in apartments … Interest Co NZ


    The construction industry’s grumpiness may be the result of a forced shift in focus towards more affordable housing, says Greg Ninness … Interest Co NZ

    … The political direction is clear …

    New Zealaned Housing Minister Phil Twyfords speech to the New Zealand Initiative Members Retreat … New Zealand Government / Beehive


    … extract …

    … In our view there are three big challenges that have to be addressed:

    1. A broken system for financing infrastructure

    2. A planning system based on urban containment

    3. The failure of governments until now, both local and central, to actively work with the private sector to enable urban growth and expansion.

    … concluding …

    … I talked about the land banking and speculative economy, and the pressure cooker that has given us some of the most obscenely expensive housing in the world.

    These moves are designed to change that. …

    … If we do these things we can truly flood the market with development opportunities. We can break the land banking economy, and drive down the cost of urban land.

    We can achieve more competitive urban land markets. And industry that is more focused on development and building places of enduring value instead of land banking and speculation.

    That is the pathway to more affordable housing, and a systemic fix of the crisis that has caused so much hardship, and sucked so much of our national wealth into residential property instead of the productive economy. … read more via hyperlink above …

    • Interesting that the 50%+ fall in Ireland took over 5 years. So, 8-10% falls each year.

      I don’t see why prices in Australia shouldn’t fall even more over the next 5 years. Prices need to fall 50% to just be relatively high (5X) compared to median household income. And when debt is limited, people will actually need to buy homes with real income. Plus, we can expect incomes to fall as unemployment increases, resulting in even lower rents, making the ROI even worse for investors.

      It IS going to be a bloodbath!

      • Yup, that is a good exercise just to contextualise things: where would prices be if debt were banned and everyone had to pay hard cash for homes? We are talking 85-90% falls (assuming everything else remained the same i.e. the economy continued to tick along and unemployment remained around 5%). Of course, it doesn’t work like that. the knock on effects of a property crash would see unemployment launch through 10-15% and continue on.

        And debt will never be banned but at least it sets out a range of potential outcomes.

      • Mining BoganMEMBER

        Ready to be restored? Ready?

        For $1.4m I want it decked out with everything. Everything. Twice.

      • Yup, lovely home but crazy price. Will be available for a fraction of that in the years to come.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      66 Gore St Fitzroy last sold in 2011 for $1,463,000. They’re looking for offers between $1,400,000 & $1,500,000.

      Assuming a minimal deposit IO loan, that’s quite a haircut.

  3. Arthur Schopenhauer

    Can anyone in the know explain the mechanics of mortgagee sales in Australia?

    • Yeah I usually only get as far as the first idiot calling out “in the hole!” even before the inanimate object arrives anywhere near that particlar spot of grass. Dumbest thing in sport in my view. Love the azaleas though.

      • America may be an anglophone country but culturally they are on a different planet.

    • Looked up tickets and was shocked to see they are only 115 but via a lottery

      A British open seems a better bet plus you can play St. Andrews and the other public courses

      Visited Drummond today – looking up updating my 20 year old Crenshaw blade putter and 25 year old (!) footjoy shoes. Apparel so cheap balls the same (love the flouro yellow pro v1) buy yegads putters are exy I don’t recall Scotty Cameron’s being so exy ….

      • Golf gear, like everything baby boomers like buying, is stupidly expensive because baby boomers have stupid amounts of money. They are the bubble generation.

    • Superb event. Timely opportunity to do an Aussie property price comparison on properties in the neighborhood.

      Like a 3/2 on 1200 sqm within a km of the course for less than $140K!

      You’d struggle to find anything within 300km of Royal Melbourne for that price.

      How about this stately looking place on 1/2 acre, 700m off the course for less than $200K?

  4. Nine-Fairfax is joining Newscorp in the Labor-bashing campaign.

    I wonder if they’re going to come out with an editorial supporting the LNP like they did in the NSW election. “Allow Gladys to finish the job”

    What job that is I wonder. Selling every single public asset and spending the money on stadiums?

    The establishment is clearly trying to sink Labor’s campaign.

  5. Interesting read on the Boeing drama. Looks like much more than a software update is needed to fix that turd. At least they will need to add another AoA sensor and provide override of the MCAS, but with no MCAS the plane has abnormal lift in some circumstances due to the new engines so it can stall, so training will be needed too. And then you are still left with a dodgy plane. Plus they will need to apply these fixes to the hundreds already sold plus the thousands on order at their cost. I wouldn’t want to fly on it either. That’s what you get when you put greed and profits ahead of everything else.


    • The Traveling Wilbur

      Nah. It’s just standard practice.

      Really important people would never fly a 737 300.

    • The 737 is basically a 707 optimsed for short haul routes,

      That it has been safe and successful in its 50 year career is beyond doubt,

      This tragic chapter is plane proof of the extent of which government oversight is captured by Corporates.

      When passengers start actively seeking out and avoiding the Max ,
      It’s Gone Boeing Gone

      The stain is so severe ,Boeing will have no option but to start over with a clean sheet design.

      • Management was so preoccupied with share buybacks that they forgot to actually understand what their competition was doing and invest in their business accordingly.

        This story is one of catastrophic management failure on a bunch of levels.

    • @CharlieM
      I used to do a fair bit of gliding where stalling the brute was half the fun. Looking at that Boeing, with the tiny wings and extreme aspect ratio, you wouldn’t want to even THINK about stalling it. That baby could lose 10,000 feet faster than a Dago can spit… But hey, it’s all about optimizing fuel consumption. Just great – as long as no-one makes a mistake…

      • Thanks RS – I haven’t seen any TAE stuff for yonks. I used to read it all the time and went to hear Nicole Foss when she was out in Australia some years back. That article seems clear and damning for Boeing.

    • They should cut their losses and scrap the plane entirely. It’s time for a brand new design.

      I would not be long Boeing stock right now.

    • Thanks Charlie but to be honest I don’t think we’ve heard the last of this Max8 story.
      The story we’re being told just doesn’t make sense, Boeing is releasing FAA certified solutions to a problem that they’ve defined (but never really released details for public scurrility) So we have a certified solution before we even know for sure what the problem is. Huh?? does that make sense to anyone
      Maybe Boeing is right, maybe they have a fix, maybe if we all just trust them than planes will be safe for another 50 years BUT the real truth is that they F’ed up and when you f’up as badly as Boeing you owe the public more than a trust us ..we’re the experts …you owe the Public a real technical explanation with proper third party oversight and verification.
      Sorry Boeing but that’s the minimum price for such a monumental F’up …and be glad if this is all it costs you.

      • Yeah. When your incompetence/greed/whatever results in hundreds of men, women and children shieking in their final moments as they rocket into the deck at at several hundred knots and are smashed to doll rags…it might be time to pause and reflect on how you are running your business, among other things.

        I will NOT fly on one of those damned machines. I have many times given thanks to Boeing’s engineers while riding through the turbulent skies in one of their aircraft. But they’ve travelled down a dark path and this machine is damned.

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        @both of the above: Yup. Declared the same myself, and this ‘fix’ doesn’t alleviate any of the concerns that led to that (fisho mentions some of the key ones).


    • In the future this is what sex will look like..

      We are halfway there, a friend of mine is on Tinder and hooks up with random women all the time. Just last night some bird was on the way home and didn’t want to go home empty handed and hits him up.

      He said he feels dirty, 1 way to solve that will be technology simply have remote sex with random strangers over some sort of VR device and remove the exchange of fluids.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Sounds like a better option than mine. Walking back f from The Manly Boatshed for this week’s coffee with the missus cursing me when a bloke in front turned around ” charming ” she then let loose a torrent at him he promptly scuttled off with her in verbal pursuit denigrating him for his defensive lat spread.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Correction, The Boathouse Shelly Beach.
        Later met up with a couple of new early 40’s parents who didn’t appreciate my spiel on Sustainable Australia Party. Oh well made some enemies that will never see again anyhow but at least the spiel won’t escape their mind for a while.

      • Thanks Gav, a movie I haven’t seen. Did your mate have to go for the Dettol? Or maybe his dirty feeling is actually a used feeling if he thinks about it with his big head first. It doesn’t hurt to be selective sometimes…….

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        Colin, finally got paid for that EWP job that threatened me with violence. Luckily a bit of thick skin and perseverance required that’s all, but thanks for the concern.
        Doing work for the cerebral palsy place atm.(machinery to make wheelchair mods) and had to OH&S certify a bandsaw which did a lot of damage to a user leaning over to retrieve the cut off.

      • Glad about that Boom! Good to see you’re still keeping active in the game too even if this one has a gory story. Always something interesting in it : )

  6. Capital Appreciation

    For your viewing pleasure… I present what I consider to be one of Canberra’s ugliest homes:


    However, it’s clear my taste in homes is not sophisticated enough to be won over “by the grace and sophistication of French Baroque architecture”. It would be more apt to call it a broken attempt at French architecture. It was due to auction this morning at 9.30am and I was morbidly interested in viewing this monstrosity as I’ve always marvelled at its grotesque architectural exterior of sky blue, weird flowerpots and it’s stark Game of Thrones like entrance, and the allhomes photos suggest this theme continues through the interior of the home. However, I have this feeling that they may have withdrawn the auction and forgotten to update the listing as it wasn’t listed with open times this morning, which is highly unusual, especially for auction day.

    They’ll probably want north of 1.5 million for it too! There’s probably a colour blind, tasteless fool out there, but this one will likely be a hard sell.

    • If that’s as ugly as it gets you’re doing ok…. I’ve seen some shockers in Sydney / Melbourne. Just look at 70/80s Greek / Italian abodes… With those arch ways and columns lol..

      • innocent bystander

        too country club for me.
        is that single leaf stone work? without a cavity would think there would be damp issues.

      • BoomToBustMEMBER

        I think it would have a lot of traffic noise, and depending on where you go and when you go can get very busy around there especially in Warrandyte at peak times.

    • The Penske FileMEMBER

      With all the extra clicks on the property now through this site I wonder if the site owners will read the analytics and be excited by all the interest in the actual property.

    • Well the East Asians would not touch it with a bargepole given its street number. Luckily for the owners Canberra has substantial slavic communities: (not saying that members of those communities are colour blind, tasteless fools).

    • innocent bystander

      take out the furniture and the light fittings and it no uglier than most built in the last 15 years.

      tho I have nothing against chandeliers – put one in a girlfriends bedroom once. looked cool.
      no swinging from tho.

  7. Capital Appreciation

    Not sure if this was posted during the week, but Malcolm’s former Kingston apartment sales price has come through at 2.06 million:



    Looks like the data in the article are true, and the property appreciated 110k in 13 years, so a capital loss once buying and selling costs factored in. It originally listed with a price expectation around 2.5m.


    Looking at the allhomes past sales data, there have been a few sales in the same apartment complex around 2.5-3 million. I reckon those owners would be sweating a bit.

    • Interesting he had no interest holding onto it. He has a lot to do with John Hampton hedge fund manager who is a property bear.

    • yeh…. I had a 3 bdrm under him … got out of it for $1.45m back in 2008 …. one of the BEST decisions I’ve ever made … couldn’t believe that the buyers didn’t seem to know what was happening o/s …. had to accept a 60 day settlement as they were doing the Euro cruise thing … sweated for a while but with a 10% deposit reckoned I had a chance for a resale … back then was absolutely paranoid about my debt exposure …

      unlike Mal I don’t have a merchant banker thingi (as the marsupial used to say – what happened to him BTW) to fall back on. Just a lot of hard work to make it happen within the rules which I think are BS, but, ‘there you go’ – as they say in the south (US that is) ….

      Thanks for those updates CA – haven’t felt that good about a decision for a while, DW

  8. Nassim Nicholas Taleb Bot
    ‏”In poor countries, officials receive explicit bribes; in D.C. they get the sophisticated, implicit, unspoken promise to work for large corporations” – @nntaleb

  9. https://www.greaterfool.ca/
    Check out this bit of history:

    “The curve has been inverted for 75 out of 148 years since the start of the historical data set in 1871. Since 1950, the curve has been inverted 21 out of 68 years or about one-third of the time. So clearly the frequency of recessions before the post-WWI period distorts things, but either way, the slope spends much more time inverted than the US economy spends in recession.”

  10. Why you’re more likely to die of cancer in Europe than America
    They missed the key reason, Am ericans die froym heart disease before they get a chance to get cancer

    • innocent bystander

      that reminds me of the story about how the French had low heart disease despite their diet.
      the story goes they stopped doing post mortems on everybody long before other countries so just put down natural causes as to the cause of death.

      • those who were sick and died didn’t need the autopsy to determine that they died form hearth disease
        for those died suddenly they have to do autopsy to make sure it’s not murder

        french stats are fine – they live longer than Americans and less of them as sick while alive … french food is actually OK because it’s not trans fat that is killing us but sugar

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Pretty sure the relative portion sizes play a non-trivial role as well.

        You could probably nearly feed an entire French family from an American restaurant’s three-course dinner for one, if you added an extra side of veggies/salad.

  11. Anyone been using Motley Fool reports? Any views if they are any good or any recommendations on other similar to Motley Fool?

    • They are ok. You can get some info about a company you didn’t know about before. If you get interested in the company then you can start digging for more info from other sources. But their recommendations are pretty useless – I wouldn’t pay attention to them.

      The general rule of investing doesn’t change with time.

      (1) Industry leader, preferably monopoly or near monopoly position
      (2) High ROE, fat margins, low capital requirements, strong brand
      (3) Good management, evidence of long-term thinking, history of sensible acquisitions, record of honest and straight shooting communications, high ownership by the management, preferably history of under-promising and over-delivering.
      (4) Good financial position, plenty of cash, low debt

      Once you have identified your target companies, put them on your watch list and wait.

      Once in a while some bad news or accidents hit some of your targets. It doesn’t happen often so don’t miss it when it does. Remember dumpling’s golden adage:

      A good investor let the market come to him. A bad investor chases it.

      • Yes, it takes effort. You shouldn’t invest in stocks (businesses) unless you can do some basic cash flow analyses and NPV calculations using discounted cash flows.

        Investing is more like gardening than gambling.

    • NIkola
      Do you happen to know what AI company they were touting recently?Deep Learning technology will make it bigger than Facebook and all that..

      • Never used them so I wouldn’t. I am thinking of subscribing hence why I asked if anyone used them.

    • They are guilty of pumping certain stocks and have recommended some duds. Just be aware that stocks actually go up most of the time so long calls have a (statistically) greater chance of success than short calls. Ergo, if you make several dodgy long calls that flake then you really suck at stock picking.

    • Nikola – I’m pretty conservative (money-wise) so all I can do is recommend the classic “The Intelligent Investor” by Ben Graham. Key findings that relate to your Motley Fool question are:

      – If someone really has a special skill at picking stocks, they won’t be telling everyone their secrets via a newsletter.

      – Someone may appear to have a special skill – if they cherry pick their data points – but over the long run even professional money managers struggle to beat the index once you deduct their fees.

      – Some people do have enough skill at analysing stocks to beat the index funds over the long term – it’s a case of understanding valuations, earnings, debt etc, and you can do it – but the time and effort required is significant. The book concludes that for most people, the return on extra effort is not worth it. Ie you can get almost all the gains of investing in the stock market by buying index funds (choose ones with low fees/costs ONLY) and for most people this is best. Or you can put in a lot of extra effort and you MIGHT do a bit better. But you might not, too.

      • This is a very good suggestion.

        I might add two points.

        First, one needs to have a certain type of temperament to be successful in investing. Intellect helps, but not as important as one’s temperament.

        Second, since the time and effort required is significant, it does not make any sense to do so if one only invests peanuts. It will make more and more sense as one’s capital becomes larger.

  12. GunnamattaMEMBER

    This election campaign has degenerated into claims of racism and bigotry real quick….

    ‘I think there’s form here’: Scott Morrison accuses Labor of peddling racist sentiments

    Mr Morrison accused deputy opposition leader Tanya Plibersek of racism – though without actually using the word – after she said Australians could not “rely on an Indian mining company to bring jobs to central and North Queensland”.

    At a press conference in the multicultural Sydney suburb of Ashfield, the Prime Minister linked the issue to former NSW Labor leader Michael Daley’s infamous remarks that Asian migrants were taking young people’s jobs.

    “I think there’s form here from the Labor Party, particularly here in NSW,” Mr Morrison said.

    “At the recent state election, we had Michael Daley saying Asians will take your jobs. Now we’ve got Tanya Plibersek, who would be deputy prime minister of the country, saying that Indian businesses can’t create jobs.

    and the great Dutto

    Both sides expect the election to be dirty but few thought Peter Dutton would stoop so low so quickly

    The Home Affairs Minister has launched a grubby overnight attack on Ali France, his Labor opponent in the marginal Queensland seat of Dickson, accusing the amputee of “using her disability as an excuse” for not yet buying a home in the seat she wants to win at the May 18 election.


    “There are plenty of people with disability living in Dickson,” Dutton told News Corp on Friday.

    “A lot of people have raised this with me. I think they are quite angry that Ms France is using her disability as an excuse for not moving into our electorate.”

    • innocent bystander

      that’s hilarious – thought it was a spoof.

      “You can hear sirens going off all the time when they’re paging people, but I can’t see it, so it doesn’t bother us at all,” Ms Linley said.
      “Why let it put you off, it’s maximum security so they [the inmates] are not likely to get out.”

      “Since we’ve lived here, I think one [prisoner] has escaped but as long as they’re not knocking on my door, I’m alright.”

  13. GunnamattaMEMBER

    OK MB Boys and Girls

    Who knows much about lemon trees?

    I have a lemon tree which seems in good nick, I make sure I throw some fertilizer pellets (for lemon trees) its way once a year, and give it a regular water.

    It throws lots and lots of small cruddy lemons and rarely ever has larger respectable juicy lemons. I have googled and youtubed for answers, but really found sweet FA addressing the issue. Who can tell me why?

    • Yep, pee on it. But also, citrus tend to have shallow root systems, so you should mulch out to the drip line to keep it moist (not against trunk, or will rot). They don’t like drying out, and if you are only getting small lemons, i’d be inclined to think you may not be watering it enough. The don’t like grass growing around them either. So kill grass, mulch, water.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        OK, confession time

        I have also asked one of the old ducks at work (who is forever bringing into work uber lemons which flex like Arnold Schwarzenegger) who said exactly the same thing. I headed out to take a slash on the tree one night and of course that happened to be the one night in the millennium my wife and daughter thought they’d go for a backyard mosey at the same time.- thus affording my daughter a valid excuse to scream out at the top of her voice ‘Daddy is doing a peepee on the tree!’ and enabling my wife, who had hitherto assumed she had married a well educated urbane man, to canvass the possibility she had married an agrarian yob. After explaining to the Mrs I have done that a few times.

        The tree has mulch out to tree line and no grass. No gall wasps. I’ll go and take another leak now (while they arent home)

      • OK, sounds like you are doing the right thing. Try a PH test for your soil as they like it slightly acidic. Might be the problem. Giving it a good prune might help too.

      • innocent bystander

        it is obviously the quality of your pee Gunna.
        you are not drinking that low carb sh1t are you?

      • GunnamattaMEMBER


        Anything absorbing my pee would be getting an awful lot of caffeine. I open the innings each day with 2 – 3 long blacks, and I am on the turmeric and vinegar thing at the moment – god only knows what the tree makes of that.

      • And stay off the Metho the night before. I peed on my lemon tree and it caught fire..

      • Also,drive a non galvanised nail into the trunk( courtesy of ABC gardening). Apparently Australian soils are iron deficien-it’s all over in one spot in WA.
        Worked well for our tree- and yes all male household members are encouraged to piss on the tree.

      • I grew lemons in London (in a pot, in a “sunny” corner) – the visiting gardener couldn’t believe it. Said he’d never seen it before. Not sure if he was serious or not.

        Anyway the only things I did to help it were
        – position it right
        – pick off the bugs
        – p!ss on it.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      Yep, pee but dilute it first. Into a watering can, and then dilute it 1 in 10. Undiluted will burn the tree’s roots.

    • And after all the other advice, if it’s too bitter get some Cast Iron swarf from an engineering shop & sprinkle it around it from time to time, it’ll be sweeter next year.

    • If none of these suggestions work I would try planting a tree in a different location. It sounds odd but sometimes certain spots just don’t work for some reason.

    • Mr RobertsMEMBER

      I would guess Boron deficiency. As we are on a financial type site, I must add a caveat, that being; hope is not a strategy. If you really want to know; send off a soil sample and a leaf sample for analysis. This will tell tou what is lacking, and what is available in the soil and what isn’t being transferred to the plant. Costs about $150 ea, but that’s how you grab it by the short and curlies.

      You could also pee on the missus during the full moon on the solstice.

      Kill a chicken and sprinkle the blood on your door post, etc, etc

      • Mr RobertsMEMBER

        If you wern’t up for a soil sample, I’d suggest throwing a few handfuls of dolomite lime around it to buffer any PH issues. Lime is essentially calcium, which is needed for cell development. It is not really stable in the soil and shoots through like a vibrant at settlement time. Water in well and wait a month. Check soil PH. If Ok, add fertilizer.

    • Was the tree grown from a seed? Citrus are notoriously variable so it’s important to get a named, grafted variety.
      The only other thing I can think of – give the trunk a good kicking while wearing some steel cap boots. Scares the tree in to producing better. Works on other fruit trees too.

  14. I was in a 7-Eleven yesterday. The guy behind the counter was white. A white customer comes in and says to the counter guy, “You’re not 1ndian!”. Counter guy says, “I get that a lot,” before adding, “this is a corporate store. 1ndians only hire 1ndians”. We all laughed. The guys were 20-somethings, ‘alternative’ types.

    Not everyone is fooled.

      • And some Patel’s from Uganda ended up in New Zealand. Life hasn’t been easy for them….

        “Vilpesh Patel’s father… used to be a prosperous dry-goods merchant in Lira, a town in central Uganda. In 1972, when 32, Idi Amin ordered the confiscation of all Asian property, stripping the owners of their Ugandan nationality. After a few months in a refugee camp in Austria, where he was separated from his wife and young children, he ended up working as a bus conductor in London.”

      • This quote is quite revealing…

        ”An old-fashioned Patel would say, Why so many cars? But I’m just enjoying my achievements, right? It’s a generation thing,” he says. ”My dad never went out to dinner, never indulged himself. He saved every penny. That’s how he had $50,000 to give me.

        ”I’ll tell you something, though,” Amin adds. ”If my dad had enjoyed the fruits of his labor, I’d have been in trouble. Big trouble.”

    • Yeah nah I reckon you made that one up, too conveniently fits within your constant narrative on MB. It was almost believable until the last bit, which was too much on point. Keep proselytising though, you might win over one or two here.

    • George Street, Brisbane CBD, opposite Brisbane Square. I can give you details of the worker if you want, if that helps?

  15. innocent bystander

    given how hard it is, impossible?, to caste a meaningful vote I went and had a look at the ABC Vote Compass survey
    After getting past the annoyance of the partisan questions, no real questions on the important questions, you do get to the questions on what you think of the major parties(4) and their leaders. Here you can express your disgust.
    Over 250,000 have so far used Vote Compass. I think last election they got over 1m.

    Given the ABC election coverage I reckon the feedback in this section will get a good airing.

    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      I just did that survey…..

      This is what i got. I am pretty sure the only ‘socially conservative’ answer I gave was not wanting any increased immigration

      For the most part I don not see the Greens in any way as being more left economically or more socially progressive – unless progress is feeding neoliberal dogma in the form of unending new wage serfs

      • TailorTrashMEMBER

        Funny that Gunna …I did it and landed in pretty much the same spot …….and not uncomfortable with that ( yes I am socially conservative …..but open to gradual change ) ……….but got to say all that demographic sucking in info at the end from our ABC disturbs me a tad …even for a chap who might have been born in São Tomé and Príncipe………..the ABC is loosing trust every day ………Ita ……….you have a job ……

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        For the most part I don not see the Greens in any way as being more left economically or more socially progressive – unless progress is feeding neoliberal dogma in the form of unending new wage serfs

        Come on, mate, really ? The ALP spent most of the last twenty years opposed to same-sex marriage and still has the cattleticks onboard. The Greens talk about actual genuinely publicly owned infrastructure, properly re-establishing public healthcare, and better workplace laws for everyone, not just union members.

        I ended up parallel to the ALP in the second-from-left column. Their relative positions seem mostly fair to me, albeit based on the ALP’s recent policy shifts rather than in the context of recent history (plus Aunty has to maintain the story that there’s still a “centre” between ALP and LNP).

        Hopefully Political Compass will update for this election as well.
        (Note the relative distance between Greens and ALP here is a lot bigger.)

      • TailorTrashMEMBER

        IB …..you are correct ….but I stumbled into this site ………..as many do…………missing the subtleties of it
        …so I find it asking all sorts of impertinent questions …………far better that our ABC revert to a virtual cardboard box polling booth than at the end asking for your email address …( if it’s outsourced to a data processing agency that’s even more scary )

        …….I may be paranoid ……………but all arms of government and it’s agencies in the current Straya are sus ….

        I fear …that Scomo ( Himmler ) assisted by Dutton ( Geobles ) are what we have …..and what we may get again

        …………Not that Bill and co might be that much better …….but if they just inch the country in the right direction that might be a start …………

      • I ended up in the bottom left quadrant parallel with Labor on economic values and further down than the libs socially.

      • So the money they spent on this gets approved how? I thought they were supposed to report the news, and provide some entertainment. How much of what they are doing now aligns to their mandate? So what are we if we support independents or SAP? Non existent! I think parts of the ABC are very good, but it’s getting to be a very thin slice of it. They are a very privileged section of the media who pretty much run their own agenda. I read the headlines, but that’s it, and like many of us we don’t have the time anyway to be preached to.

      • ABC’s charter is very vague so that all sorts of things to fly under the radar. It’s strange we have a public broadcaster to provide light entertainment. Whilst I love a lot of the content, it is strange that tax-payers are funding the broadcasting of North American and British comedy shows for Australian viewing. How does that inform the Australian identity etc?

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Maybe if people like you weren’t so keen on defunding the ABC, they might be able to afford to do some analysis on the more obscure political parties or create more shows locally.

        The ABC’s Charter requires it: to provide innovative and comprehensive services which contribute to a sense of national identity, inform, educate, entertain and reflect Australian cultural diversity; to promote the arts; and to broadcast to other countries programs that will encourage awareness and understanding of Australia.

        This fairly easily falls under “inform” and “educate”.

      • Good try drsmithy. Perhaps if they didn’t pay Juanita Phillips, $300K plus to read a teleprompter for the Sydney news, or maybe didn’t pay good coin to Rove McManus to do a nerd show critiquing Dr Who episodes (a UK show), or maybe didn’t have a Comedy station (okay, part-time Comedy channel), or maybe didn’t have redundant websites, or didn’t have radio morning shows for each capital city covering more national issues then local issues, then maybe they would have the money required to expand the compass.

        And you do realise they have a $1.4b budget each year?

        But of course, no cuts to YOUR ABC, or the Peppa Pig gets it!

      • But drshmithy, does it really ‘inform’ and ‘educate’ if the information presented (and received in ‘good faith’ by viewers because it is suppose to be unbiased) is skewed, and does not encompass all parties, including emerging minor parties?

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        How is it skewed ? I mean, all those dots should probably be moved a couple of squares rightwards and down, but that is consistent across all of them so it’s hardly favouring anyone in that sense, just promoting the mainstream myth that the “right” and “left” split roughly 50/50 rather than something like 80/20.

        But I doubt that’s what you mean by “skewed”.

        “Objective” and “factual” is a lot more important than “balanced”.

      • the compass is in urgent need of recalibration.
        The greens are not at the far left on economic issues. that is ridiculous. They are not even to the left on economic issues of the 1950s/60 ALP.
        Do they believe in centralised wage fixing, re-unionisation of the workforce, general strikes, secondary boycotts, industry wide collective bargaining, nationalisation of banks and utilities, re-nationalisation of Telstra, 75% top marginal rate (per Menzies), long term non-parole sentence for tax avoidance, wealth taxes, active fiscal policy targeting full employment…?

        No. they don’t even have a coherent economic agenda. It’s just a bunch of reactive thought bubbles.
        And even that isn’t what I would call a “leftist” economic agenda it’s just traditional social democracy.

        Safe to say anyone to the right of the greens economically on that compass is really centre to right on economic issues.
        And ALP is centre to centre-right on economics. Less so than under Keating (which is annoying him.. good) but that is only because he was an extremist.

        And why does a question “should Australia become a republic” carry equal weight to “should the wealthy pay higher taxes”?
        The first question says nothing about a persons politics the second question says everything.

      • Why should a public agency be advising where you may be positioned on the political spectrum, based on what they think certain views equates to party wise?

      • what it reveals about the user doesn’t matter..
        I think it is money very well spent because of what it reveals about the ABC.
        Namely that they have been as disoriented as almost everyone else by the dramatic shift to the right of the overton window and relentless propaganda around the “left” and “cultural Marxism” and have lost sight of where policies align to political categories and actually sit on the spectrum.
        Every party should be further to the right of where they are sitting.
        How can the greens be at the extreme left? Are they advocating to close the stock exchange and start a five year plan?

        The disorientation that reveals ties back perfectly to their “balanced” current affairs. As though having a lunatic from the IPA provides balance. No it provides extreme propaganda and an absence of balanced debate, ie. 1 extreme political view and everyone else trying to find common ground.

      • Why should a public agency be advising where you may be positioned on the political spectrum, based on what they think certain views equates to party wise?

        Because telling you where your answers about policy questions say you sit in relation to the various parties based on their policies is informative.

        The whole process is essentially a collection of:
        “What do you think about X ?”
        “I think A.”
        “Party Q’s policy agrees.”

        This is why, for example, when I select the “Immigration” subtopic in the end results it tells me I line up with One Nation.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Your last two words are probably redundant.

        How isn’t it appropriate ? This is exactly the sort of thing a publicly owned broadcaster should be doing.

      • innocent bystander

        not sure how much they are involved
        says brought to you by
        voxpoplabs.com in association with abc.net.au

        hopefully ABC might broadcast how low the parties and their leaders rated outright, as opposed to each other which all the election will tell us (apart from informal votes).

  16. If you are not doing much tonight, the Melbourne Comedy Festival Allstars show is repeated on ABC2 – Comedy at 8.30. The highlight for me was Tom Ballard fairly early on ( 30 mins in?) who gave a stellar rant about baby boomers and property. Only lasted a few minutes but he didn’t hold back. I sensed some of the crowd were slightly under whelmed but that’s stand up.

  17. Mining BoganMEMBER

    An interesting development in the doctored auction results. I watch the area over at work because I reckon it’s like a bellwether FHB/new Australian hotspot. Looking at the $550-650k mark. Early last year everything sold. Late last year/early this year probably 60-70% were selling. Today…six passed in out of seven. Lots of ex-rental crap hitting the market though. My thoughts run to the old couple who didn’t want to give their house away before Xmas. They’ve now entered a price range on their blurb. The lower end is higher than two in the same street that sold recently, and also higher than highest bids on passed in houses today. It’s not a superior house. It’s in a crap spot. Hopefully their hubris costs them six figures.

    And not one place sold in my area in two weeks! Unheard of. Must be the school holidays.

    • ‘Must be the school holidays’

      A bloke on LinkedIn commented it was the ‘usual pre-election slowdown’. Not making it up.

      • Some slowdown pre election is apparently normal. I don’t know if the data backs this up but I’ll take ANY reason that prevents hopeful FHBs making the mistake of a lifetime and buying now.

    • It appears Melbourne is hitting the panic button before Sydney even though falls (from peak) in Sydney are large than Melbourne. No new stock in my area and very few in the areas I keep an eye on. Will be interesting to see who blinks first once new stock start hitting the market.
      Sooner or later new stock must start to build unless people found alternative finance sources or banks started lending pre-RC days. Otherwise I can’t see how >50% of IO loans can re-finance this year.

  18. TailorTrashMEMBER

    Small area of North Shore I watch ……one recorded as sold at auction ( price withheld ) …yet billboard outside house has an auction date in May …..
    …..other house passed in today ……..not reported ………..and clearance rate for Sydney is 64% ……nuf said …………

    • 53% report rate makes the results totally unreliable. I think the number sold is a better indicator of the market at this stage. 2019 – there were just over 300 sales. Same weekend in 2017 – there were 700 sales at 81%. Much weaker market

    • We were in Liverpool in south-west Sydney yesterday thought i’d check out the local RE scene .

      The first agent had decided not to list prices OR price ranges on any of their listings anymore, they’d all been removed, the buyer was expected to ‘suggest’ a price instead.

      The other agent did have new stock but weren’t listing online for some reason, prices were listed and were lower than any recent precedent at around 6% gross yield for a house. I don’t know if the usual 10% discount on the asking price applies on top of that, but the vendor was under financial pressure.

      Heaps of apartments just finished or getting into final stages of completion (as everywhere else in Sydney). In the local westfield (not dissimilar to every other westfield in sydney) they were advertising new luxury apartments and ‘bargain’ new land relaase 300sqm blocks for $300k.

      Checking online, the most recent house sale in Liverpool was for $682.5k, which the vendors had only bought May last year for $850k.

      Checking out realcommercial.com.au to see how the non-resi sector looks, instead of finding warehouses shops offices for sale (which would be reasonable as the area was basically an light industry area until recently), it’s inundated with residential ‘development sites’ , again none with prices listed, all make an offer.

      At this rate it feels more like the resi sector is still in rapid decline and auction clearance rate is gaga

      • Great update, thanks.

        Do you have a link for that property that sold for $682K? That’s down 20% in less than a year.

    • innocent bystander

      I did see some tightening in my local rental market a few months ago (and this is a general Perth trend reported also) but that quickly reversed in my area with average rentals sticking on the market and asking rents dropping – good quality go quickly, but that is because they are rare in my parts.

      Having said that, Perth has become more liveable over the last few years, more infrastructure, less congestion (think that was reflected in one of UE’s graphs the other day). And more infrastructure funding coming now that WA has several electoral seats in play – both parties have already promised much, and I suspect more will be promised in coming weeks.

      Not sure what can be done, if anything, about the prevalence of suss political ideology here apart from not having them in positions of power. Just wish the lesser of 2 evils was even more less evil.

  19. Hugh PavletichMEMBER

    … IRELAND …

    Dublin house prices more than nine times the average salary … The Irish Times


    Dublin’s housing market may have reached “peak affordability” with prices now more than nine times the average salary, a level not seen since the height of the boom.

    An analysis of the latest house price data from the Central Statistics Office shows the median price paid for a house in the capital was €370,000 in February. This was 9.3 times the average annual earnings (€39,753) for the same period. In Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, the most expensive area in the State, the median price (€541, 667) paid for a house was nearly 14 times average earnings.

    The price-income multiple is a standard measure of affordability worldwide. In the past an “affordable” home was considered to be three to four times a person’s income. The Central Bank’s mortgage restrictions, which limit people to borrowing 3½ times their income, reflect this measure of affordability. The rapid rise in house prices in recent decades has, however, decoupled this relationship, with buyers requiring many multiples of income to get on the property ladder. … read more via hyperlink above …
    2019 15th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey

    Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey: All Editions


    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Gov’t says design standards and planing processes have been streamlined, we mean lowered.

    • Not sure where they get 40,000 euro as being the average salary. I can tell you a lot of people are on more like 30,000 euro. I certainly didn’t earn 40k euro for the first few years. By the time I left I was earning 60-70,000 euro. That was comfortable. Buying a house at current prices in Dublin and that salary range would still be a little difficult.

    • that design is just not right imo. It was backed by Paul Allen ex Microsoft who passed away recently and bad that he missed this, but can you imagine a cross wind landing in this monster. How strong that centre wing has to be is crazy. What if you had a wind sheer just on one side of either empennage, or either body? Also, now with coming hypersonic engines or the latest hypersonic combined rocket engine.


  20. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    Good post by Relevant Stakeholder above,

    “MH: The key is the concept of wealth addiction and how it leads to hubris — arrogance that seeks to increase power in ways that hurt other people. Hubris is not merely over-reaching; it is socially injurious. The wealthy or power injure other people knowingly, to establish their power and status.

    That is what Aristophanes meant when his characters say that wealth is not like bananas or lentil soup. Wealth has no object but itself. Wealth is status — and also political control. The creditor’s wealth is the debtor’s liability. The key to its dynamic is not production and consumption, but assets and liabilities — the economy’s balance sheet. Wealth and status in the sense of who/whom. It seeks to increase without limit, and Socrates and Aristotle found the major example to be creditors charging interest for lending “barren” money. Interest had to be paid out of the debtor’s own product, income or finally, forfeiture of property; creditors did not provide means of making interest to pay off the loan.

    This is the opposite of Austrian School theories that interest is a bargain to share the gains to be made from the loan “fairly” between creditor and debtor. It also is the opposite of neoclassical price theory. The economics taught in universities today is based on a price theory that does not even touch on this point. The liberty that oligarchs claim is the right to indebt the rest of society and then demand full payment or forfeiture of the debtor’s collateral. This leads to massive expropriations, as did the Junk Mortgage foreclosures after 2008 when President Obama failed to write down debts to realistic market values for real estate financed on loans far beyond the buyer’s ability to pay. The result was 10 million foreclosures.”

    • Well, if no one else is going to say it, I will. This is a really good post EP. Thanks.

      • ChristopherJMEMBER

        I’ll say it too.
        A mate’s missus started a hotel room cleaning business a while ago. Going gang busters…
        Increasingly she tells me the banks are starting to become a portion of her sector, foreclosure cleans. Cleaned dwellings are then put on market with do not mention mortgagee in possession.
        Parasites. Another bloke from Perth, him and his missus lost lot and then pursued for further $35k. I said, yeah and your bank over valued the place when you bought it same as you. Yet you are ones left out of pocket?

    • Mr RobertsMEMBER

      Au Contraire. I liken wealth to a measurement of time; where one with a base line consumption of 100k would hold 10 years of wealth if 1 million in the bank. Another person may have 100k in the bank and be as wealthy if they only had expenses of 10k per year.

    • “Wealth is status — and also political control”

      Correct. Thus the absurdity of thinking someone like Gates or Zuckerberg could ever be “progressive”. They are reactionary before they’ve even said anything because their wealth is an absence of power for everyone else. Once upon a time the left knew this. Politics correctly defined is just a tussle of bank balances or assets and liabilities per Hudson.

  21. Mystic MedusaMEMBER

    A surreal moment. Was reading an SMH article about “global financial chiefs” attempts to “arrest global slowdown” and I saw an ad for Mark Bouris offering opportunities to invest in pink diamonds. I would be interested to know what more informed people than I think of this “once in a lifetime, rush now, won’t last” opportunity.


    • I’m not sure, but FYI the gclid= at the end of that link is googles ID for tracking you around the web on this ad.. Someone paid google for that ad, and they’ll then track everything else you do via their analytics. I’d look to some industry person …maybe jeweller to ask as anything suggesting you rush in is likely not such a good idea.

    • Mystic – two points worth considering –

      1 – there are a lot of ads on google where some financial big shot (Musk, Bouris, Branson, etc) appears to be selling something to trade in. They are often scams and the big shot in question has no connection to them.

      2. Even if legit. Any time an investment opportunity is being spruiked by ads, it is already overpriced and the bull run is done. They are looking for bag holders.

      Stay away.

      • Mystic MedusaMEMBER

        God yes, no way would I be interested and yes, I know that’s a tracking link & they’re trying out different landing pages. But it’s interesting in the context of the R.C. – new rules around mortgages, potential Australian sub-prime I.O. products, Y.B.R. and now this?!

        There was a “pink diamond” fad about nine years ago I think. Also it almost sounds like the sort of thing that would appeal to a boomer coming down from a property investment dream high, even the name ‘pink diamond’ evokes ‘pink panther’, Monaco, crazy wealth…

    • Waiting with trepidation for an ad for ‘stink diamonds’ so that savvy investors like Reusa can say they invested 2 in the pink and one in the stink…

  22. Hugh PavletichMEMBER

    Beijing’s Daxing Airport: Giant new facility tries to keep pace with crowded skies – The Washington Post


    BEIJING — Before the Beijing Olympics in 2008, the Chinese capital unveiled a new airport terminal that covered about 200 football fields in floor space, boasted a capacity of 50 million passengers a year, and cost $4 billion.

    That’s modest compared with what is opening next.

    Crews are putting the final touches on what will be one of the world’s largest and busiest airports. Designed by the late British architect Zaha Hadid, the phoenix-shaped Beijing Daxing International Airport is set to open in September as the latest major Chinese project, even as the country’s economy cools.

    Officials say the $12 billion Daxing airport could one day serve more than 100 million passengers per year, approaching the traffic volumes of the busiest airport in the world, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. … read more via hyperlink above …

    • GDP baby, yeah!
      Thing is the constraint on flights to Beijing is not airport space but the PLA providing sufficient flight space to commercial airliners.

    • At some point the question will get an answer.

      What percentage of the 350 million Chinese day traders will want a little bit of physical AU?


    • When you migrate from a high cost property market to a low cost market it’s very hard to come back as every year (while prices are rising) you are slipping behind as your new lower cost property is appreciating less than your old house in eg Sydney. But at least you get a higher living standard.

    • Business is the weak link. The Chinese trapped them through their greed. That is how the CCP operates. They trap people, companies, and countries through their greed.

      As for Obama, he was an f’ing disgrace on China.

  23. EU27 is now free to hold summits without the UK. So how different is this “news” to what happened in September 2016?
    “EU leaders are in Slovakia for an informal summit, but it is is particularly significant because it’s the first to be held without the UK for several decades.

    We’ll get the first clear indication of what European leaders understand Brexit to mean. Britain, which has not been invited, is no longer welcome to participate in discussions about the EU’s future. Nor is it to have control of how the EU will respond to Brexit.”

    • Not too worry. Britain will be having its own say on How the EU Operates if Farage and his Brexit EUMP’s get in at the coming, pointless elections. Imagine. The EU with 75 British ‘Farages’ on the inside!

      “Farage has a chance to achieve a similar upset to the 2014 European Parliament election. Then, as then leader of the UK Independence party, Farage shocked the political establishment by leading UKIP to victory: the first time a party other than the Conservatives or Labour had topped a nationwide vote in a century.”

  24. Googles commercial drone delivery. Seriously, in my area if this comes, it’d be the end, as we are surrounded by barking dogs who’d really go even more mental at a drone. Kids walking down the street is a trigger, and any noise in fact. You can bet they’ll be delivering all the sensor info to your local council to issue fines for whatever. The start of serious house outdoor surveillance.


  25. boomengineeringMEMBER

    Finally finished making the s/s human bone cutting machine, straight to the abb workout and now off to walk the dogs with the missus, no rest for the wicked.Setting up for a junk food night as she’s been trying to unravel my purchases for tax today.

  26. Battery powered training aircraft. US$ 20/hr op costs vs US$80 say for a 172, but would need to be low as the cost is US$349,000. There are big elec commuter models coming from Airbus and others, but this is the first FAA certified, and hopefully not the same lot that certified the Boeing 737 Max 8…self certified and even the FAA pilots not trained on the type correctly…kinda puts a big question on US aircraft now.


  27. Indonesia has started building another supercritical coal fired power plant.
    The plan is to have at least 3 of these coal fired power plants. Total output of these plants 2,350 MW
    I suppose they need it to run their industrial output with cheap base load power which employ the masses.
    Car plants, steel mills, plastics industry, advanced manufacturing, shipbuilding, aluminum smelting etc.
    All run by a state owned power company, not by our rent seeking multinationals which use tax havens in the Cayman’s

    Aerial view: construction site of Indonesia’s Java-7 power plant project 1050 MW


    • Surely these migrants know the score by now. Australia is running a low-skilled migration policy branded as a ‘skilled’ migration policy.