Links 14 February 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing:





Leith van Onselen
Latest posts by Leith van Onselen (see all)


    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      Thanks for posting.

      “Companies are realising that lengthy global supply chains designed to take advantage of low wages in the developing world have costs as well as benefits.”

      This thought hasn’t seeped into many of our corporate thinkers. It would be more convincing if he’d pulled a few quotes. Maybe someone from McKinsey and Co. Sounds more like wishful opinion.

      • Yes Banana benders lend gravitas to all econometric silliness, its why they get payed the big bucks …

  1. Abolish stamp duty – impose a proper land tax instead – SMH

    Start with vibrants – they are not allowed to vote anyway.

      • Wuhan City Blues

        They’re not exactly the solution either: they cost $100,000 – $200,000 in infrastructure each on average, yet only 1 in 5 of them would ever have a hope of paying enough tax to become a net contributor.

          • They get to $100,000 on hospital costs alone:

            Hospital bed density pre-immigration surge at turn of century was 10 per 1000 (0.01 per capita), so need 0.01 hospital beds per vibrant.

            Cost of construction per bed
            – most recent example of a capital city tertiary build – new RAH (Adelaide) = $2.44 billion / 800 beds = $3 million per bed (again rounded down)
            – but that was on a low density non contaminated site with excellent access along port road and ample space adjacent to the rail lines for spreading out construction equipment i.e NOT Sydney or Melbourne where any construction site is already crowded with residential towers 90 cm off your build lines. If you do not believe me, look at the google earth photos
            – experience with construction in densely developed areas (e.g. Sydney light rail) show potential for blowout as follows – budget $1.6 billion, actual costs $2.7 billion, so add loading of 68% for attempting to build a new hospital in a densely developed area in Sydney or Melbourne, so you are up to $5 million (again rounded down) or $50,000 per vibrant
            – actually the situation would be much, much worse in Western Sydney since the few available sites within reasonable distances of the high density residential developments are limited to places like Camilia / Rosehill which are heavily contaminated with hydrocarbons from the previous industries
            – then add annual operating costs. Westmead Hospital 2019/2020 budget provides an excellent comparison base (vibrant epicentre and #1 migration destination and good indicator of costs of providing healthcare to vibrants) = $1,023,367,000 or $1 billion (again rounded down) for 700 beds = $1.4 million per bed per annum or $14000 per vibrant per annum

            So in just 5 years of living in Australia, each vibrant would cost, in hospital beds alone $50,000 + (5 x $14,000) = $120,000

            Not that vibrants stop consuming public resources after 5 years …

            Or did I round it all down too much for you?

            And this is before public health (yes, vibrants can bring in diseases – in case you have been living under a rock for the last 8 weeks), ambulances, schools, roads, public transport (which is 80% subsidised by the Government), law enforcement, prisons (yes vibrants commit crimes too!) and so on.

            Get the picture?

    • The problem with a general Land Tax is govt remains incentivised to increase land value. Remove that incentive and I would support it.

  2. Like with all good legislation that only take effect on people born after 1965, I predict a broad based land tax won’t affect baby boomers.

    • Correct. Just as the primary place of residence will eventually be counted for aged pension eligibility but not for those born before 1965.

      • those before 65 hard earned everything in their lives without any help, just sweat and smart investments
        not like entitled brats of younger generations

        • A few questions come to mind.
          – What judgement are you referring to?
          – What science is that page / site referring to?
          – What expertise does a Prof. Of Geography (Tim Ball) bring to climate science?
          – Why should a site that proposes letting people without knowledge in a field review science papers be trusted?
          – Why should a site that claims to be based upon the standards of Karl Popper yet does not abide by it themselves (they promote theories that has shown to be false) be trusted?

          • Not allowed to reply. The link to the court’s judgment is in the article. Wasn’t allowed to reply yesterday. Its their site and I understand this- it is an economics site. Look up Spruce trees in Canada much warmer than today, blows Hottest year ever theory into the weeds based on work of H H lamb. Much hotter 1000 years ago. Tried twice with references and have given up. O’Sullivan whose site it is put his house on the line and would have lost it if Ball lost.

          • From the judgement

            “[3] The plaintiff, Dr. Mann, and the defendant, Dr. Ball, have dramatically different opinions on climate change. I do not intend to address those differences. It is sufficient that one believes climate change is man-made and the other does not. ”

            What does it have to do with science?

            And as to Spruce trees, how does that answer any of the questions I posed about why one should trust the veracity of the Principa Scientifica website, or Tim Ball’s musings on climate science?

          • Spruce trees that grew much further North than the current tree line, were carbon dated prove that summers were much warmer 1000 years ago.
            More modern papers supporting the existence of the Medieval warm period are here linked.

            The reason why Mann Lost and had to pay millions was he refused to produce the R2 stats for his hockey stick. Steve McIntyre found that if one put random data into Mann’s algorithm you got a hockey stick!

            From the website
            Team leader and co-founder, John O’Sullivan, pursued a vision to form a large body of experts united in opposing the worst excesses of government-funded science. By working as a team PSI is succeeding where lone voices had failed. From the outset PSI was driven by retired Dutch Analytical Chemist, Hans Schreuder, Texan engineer and science writer, Joseph A. Olson and Canada’s most popular climatologist, Dr. Tim Ball. Dr. Ball was our first appointed Chair of PSI and his reputation endures as a popular figure in the campaign against junk science. In 2013 John Sanderson, Past President of the Royal College of Science Association, took over as Chairman.

    • it’s clear now Scrotomo needs to go.

      But, the lumpentariat don’t care. The calls of But But But Probity fall on deaf ears when peeps are just trying to scrape by (all by design, no doubt).

      That scumbag Hanson didn’t help y’day. WTF was with that. Zero credibility.

  3. White House doesnot have ‘high confidence’ in China’s coronavirus information, official says … Jesse Pound and Eamon Javers … CNBC

    Coronavirus: Australia extends travel ban on people entering from China for a week … The Guardian

  4. NEW ZEALAND … with General Election September …

    1 NEWS Colmar Brunton poll: National and ACT hold the numbers to form a government … TVNZ

    National and ACT remain on top in the latest 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton Poll, just pulling together the numbers to form a Government. … VIEW & READ MORE via hyperlink above …
    Latest Poll – Kiwiblog

  5. The Automatic Earth website has a good explainer this morning on how the dramatic rise in reported new cases is due to a change in diagnostic criteria to recognize individuals who pretty clearly have the virus, without requiring the use of a test kit, which are in short supply. This change has been endorsed by the WHO. Thus, the big increase today is more a recognition that there are many more cases currently existing than an indicator of a dramatic expansion of new cases (though those do continue to expand rather dramatically). The curve should nomalize to the new criteria in the next several days.

  6. When one of the most bearish events imaginable, a super-contagious virus shutting down China, fails to move the S&P500 down, what’s the point of being a bear anymore? Is there any reason to believe that a recession or significant earnings drops would cause the market to go down? 🤔And if there’s no reason why the market should ever go down, why shouldn’t it go up a lot higher than it is?

    • Yep. The authorities do not want to see the markets going down so it won’t, any dip will be short lived. How? well it’s not because they are all powerful, it’s just that they control the unit of measurement that markets are measured by, fiat currency. When one controls the unit of measurement you can make that something any value you choose.