Links 16 August 2019

Global Macro / Markets / Investing:





Latest posts by Leith van Onselen (see all)



    NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) – General Electric is getting a harsh lesson in the cost of credibility. A man who warned about Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme claims the conglomerate is hiding $38 billion in losses with false accounting. The company run by Larry Culp strongly denies it, but its history of opaque reports and belated write-offs put it on weak ground. The stock’s more than 10% drop implies investors give the claims only partial credence – for now.

    • It has previously been discussed that there is no way they will be able to keep up with their pension commitments. Unfortunately, it is retirees that will suffer.

    • My question is why would anyone sell gold to others considering the sales pitch …. sounds irrational …

  2. interested partyMEMBER

    Remember hillarys bootleg server in her “bathroom”?

    Investigative Findings on Alleged Hack of Clinton’s Server by China

    “WASHINGTON – Staff from the Intelligence Community Inspector General’s office (ICIG) witnessed efforts by senior Obama State Department officials to downplay the volume of classified emails that transited former Secretary Hillary Clinton’s unauthorized server”……..remember…….. some items on the server were SAP (special access programs) where she didn’t have the authority or clearance to even look at them herself, but “somehow” they mysteriously “arrived ” there…seems she allowed china open access, for a fee, of course. It’s just good business…….

    it is good to see that the info is coming out, and maybe…just maybe…..the justice system will be level one more.

    • “I’m not sure I would be relying on the yield curve as the best signal of that risk given the yield curve has obviously not got the same sort of structure that it’s had historically.”
      goodo …the old understatement makes Q uality E ntertainment trick

  3. Some anecdata:

    My wife told me this morning that the Engineering (Electrical) graduate they’ve recently hired is on the same wage ($60k – albeit on the higher end of the range) she was on in her first job nearly twenty years ago.

    She was also able to purchase her first home (in Rockhampton) around the same time for ca. $70k. Value today: ca. $150-175k.

    So let’s be very generous and say the equivalent relatively high graduate wage today might be $75k – housing costs (at least in Rocky) have effectively doubled in real terms in the last 20 years.

    • My first job after graduation from Computer Science was earning high 30k odd in 2004. I don’t recall what house prices were exactly in many places, I do know a house near my mum’s sold for around $550k (Caulfield South) and the neighbours were concerned with how their daughters would afford to buy a home near them.

      My manager at work bought a small apartment in Caulfield North for $220k (2 bed I think) and renovated to rent it out. I think same place now would be $400k odd.

    • 1997 – Me: $35K. First home purchase $72K on 1000sqm, 15km from Melbourne CBD. Reasonably dodgy area in the west.

      Now – Graduate Civil Eng in same role $60K. Same house $750K.

      Result – from 2x annual salary to 12x annual salary over 20 years. Anyone who reckons this isn’t a dead duck bubble is completely and utterly delusional.

    • innocent bystander

      My first job after graduation from Computer Science was … $5200.
      Had to bargain hard to get a nice round $100pw.
      Block of land round Penrith way as iirc $1800, or was it $3000?
      I remember 2 bush blocks in the Blue Mountains for same $
      Dad said Mountains would never take off, people had been speculating it since the war.

    • A. time and space is a motherfker …

      B. Birth is a lotto in the Biddness cycle ….

      C. RE is location location location …

      D. Capital controls ….

      E. The market is never wrong ….

      F. I digress …

  4. NEW ZEALAND … Kiwis supporting more affordable cruise holidays big time … as they demand more affordable housing too …

    … Further reasons why New Zealand must urgently deal with its land use regulatory environment (abolish urban limits / increase land supply and properly debt finance infrastructure) … so that much more competitive property markets are allowed to evolve and visitors and tourists get better value for money … like the inspirational and dynamic customer focused cruise industry …

    Cruise ship numbers and spend swell … Statistics New Zealand
    h/t Interest Co NZ

    Cruise ship spending is going full steam ahead, swelling 28 percent to $570 million in the year ended June 2019, Stats NZ said today.

    The $125.2 million lift in annual cruise spending reflected a surge in the number of cruise voyages, port calls, and passengers. This followed an 11 percent increase for the June 2018 year.

    “Cruise ship spending has risen every year since 2015, but the annual increase in the latest 12 months is the biggest in both dollar and percentage terms,” national accounts senior manager Gary Dunnet said. … read more via hyperlink above …

    Bumper cruise ship season nears as other tourist sectors slow … Grant Bradley … New Zealand Herald (behind paywall)

    The tourism boom is over, prepare for visitor numbers to flatline … Amanda Cropp … Stuff NZ