Sunday Supplementary Links – 16 February 2020

Australian Head, to do with the blue, Michael Ramsden, 1974-79, Art Gallery of NSW


Macro & Markets




Terra Incognita

…and furthermore…



United States – 401k Millionaires


China – Coal


World Crude Balance Outlook


Eurozone Industrial Production


Greek Debt Maturation


United States – Total Debt Composition

Latest posts by Gunnamatta (see all)


    • Went to three auctions in the inner west of Sydney and can confirm. one big block that would be a knockdown and subdivision. One with limited development potential beyond simple renovation and another which had had an expensive nicely done Reno. All three had big crowds of legacy Australian types, heavy bidding and sold high.

    • Yep, the housing market here is suddenly doing a good impression of US stocks ie. completely off the reservation. Ignore the risk that a pandemic could bury the global economy within the next few months and just buy everything with both hands and feet.

      • Yep, nothing goes down in a straight line – the authorities will always do something to forestall the inevitable. H/t Peachy in this instance.

  1. reusachtigeMEMBER

    Does anyone know where you can get designer label masks from? If I’m gonna have to start looking pathetic I want to do it with style!

    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      I bought a pack of four off ebay which arrived this week, with the snazzy plastic doovers in the middle of the mouth.

      But since then I have been told by a medico that if I am going to get them I dont need four, I need to buy packs of 50 or 100 as they only last 20 minutes. Then I had the idea of keeping them fresh by wearing a stocking over the top of my head with a mask on, and then thought maybe a layered approach with a beanie over the top of that and possibly one of those intifada bandana things might be the go. Though I reckon that may complicate paying for petrol each week – as its difficult to make sense of what I am saying, no matter how loud I yell, when I do that.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Sitting here at Sonoma Cafe licking my wounds from defeat this morn, luckily still got my undefeated crown for Forrest Rd, digressing from reply that I’ve been holding my breath earlier when suspects walk past without masks.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        At a Thai restaurant (wharf) atm, full of suspects, luckily near the door with the Southerly blowing in.btw not one wearing a mask.
        Damm spoke to soon, now have some between the door and I,
        Wanted to leave but the missus likes it here. Too noisy as well in non English

        • reusachtigeMEMBER

          Dude man, I know we’re meant to respect our elders and all, and you lot are a bit funny with your outdated views, but fark man. Just because they look Chinamen doesn’t mean they are. They could be all sorts of chinamen-like races. Before you judge them please ask to make sure your racialist views are targeted to the right race. And man, it’s a Thai restaurant not Yum Cha!

    • I wear a scuba mask and snorkel. Useless against the virus but highly effective at keeping people away from me.

    • The Traveling Wilbur

      A plastic bag, duct tape and some neatly cut hosing is all that’s required for that warehouse-industrial look.

      • PalimpsestMEMBER

        The Meioair look great. But they are not P2 rated, and they don’t have a carbon layer, so they won’t really be effective against virus particles. They’re not rated for P10 either but they’ll take some larger smoke particles out.

  2. Changing the pH of the body too drastically before homeostatic responses kick in can kill you, and I have no idea if this would work but it’s worth sharing anyway cos if the shtf and I hope it doesn’t, I’d rather try something than do nothing. I know iodine is a powerful disinfectant and is essential for your thyroid. Do your own research though before following any advice.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Charlie, Many thanks for that info, that partly explains why if you swim/surf in the ocean every day you rarely get a cold or flu due to the chemicals your extract mentions, which are in abundance in sea waiter

      • Yeah I notice that too. A lot of us are deficient in those minerals anyway so if your not in the ocean regularly a multi mineral supplement would probably do no harm as maintenance.

      • “Dr. Mark Sircus, Ac., OMD, DM (P) (acupuncturist, doctor of oriental and pastoral medicine)”

        That’s got quack written all over it.

        Might want to take anything he says with a grain of salt (judging from a quick skim of his material, he’d approve.)

        • I rather like the odd grain of salt. Initial trials suggest some existing antivirals with known safety profiles will work against COVID-19. It shares 4 receptor sites with MERS and SARS. The catch is they need to be taken fairly early and COVID-19 initially presents as a minor niggle. It seems to take days before that “run over by a bus” feeling. By then it’s too late. As for “Dr” Sircus the idea that medicine is harmful, but it’s OK to take megadoses of Selenium and Iodine – I find that contradiction hard to reconcile. Selenium is one of those things where too little is clearly harmful, but too much is extremely dangerous. As for building up your immune system – that can be counter-productive. It looks as if some of the patients might be dying because of their immune response attacking their own organs. There’s mad keen research going on, and Australia might get a small window while we learn more about managing this pest. Just keep swallowing the sea water as you’re doing.

    • I am a person who was once ‘of the left’.

      I was an ALP man in the Hawke Keating era and essentially think they have never really gotten over their decision to try and run Kim Beazley into office by following John Winston Howard’s ‘small target’ strategy in 1998. I think the ALP has been running ‘small target ever since.

      And to a large extent the ‘left’ of the UK, NZ, Canada and the ‘less right’ the Democrats represent in the US have all been running ‘small target’ for a long time.

      For many people – myself included – that small target mindset is essentially a ‘small reality’ mindset, and that what the ALP has increasingly been about has been encapsulating less and less of the reality of the world and lives of the very people they once considered their rusted on supporters, and their bread and butter. I have pointed this out before but I do it again for forms sake. They have coughed their supporters up on the following issues…….

      Immigration – the ALP was central to an Australian immigration program between 1945 and 2005 which averaged a Net Overseas Migration of 75 thousand per year. It went above 150 thousand in a single year only twice in that period time (1949 and 1988). Since 2005 Australia has been adding more than 200k per year. Yet the ALP wants to run campaigns about racism without facing up to the lived reality of ordinary everyday people and the influence of an immigration program the size Australia has been running for 15 years on that experience.

      Australian economic competitiveness/free trade/economic engagement with the rest of the world – The ALP has been the party of the only genuinely reforming economic governments in Australian history. Yet any time forward of the 2000s Australia has been drifting back towards the giant quarry Hawke and Keating reformed us away from in the wake of the early 80s implosion – any genuinely reforming government now has to do it all over again.

      At the same time the ALP has in our era been central to the idea that we are some form of diverse competitive economy – while for people like me it appears that more and more Australians are simply living the bubble of an economy which has completely detached from any sense of competitiveness, and is running solely of mining revenues leveraged into housing speculation, buttressed by flooding the place with migrants to juice demand.

      The New Zealanders are running an even more extreme version of what we have been running, the UK and Canada have been running variants of the same. The US ( a much much larger economy) has been doing broadly similar.

      That leaves ‘progressive’ sides of politics in these nations essentially in a political cul de sac where whenever they do get to power, of being able to do sweet nothing in terms of meaningfully improving the living circumstances of people who would really like reform – and leaving them all essentially running right wing narratives revolving around deregulation, population ponzis, corporate profits and uber debt.

      • boomengineeringMEMBER

        The wife’s family are all staunch Labor supporters but she has turned around and showed me a quote she found.
        If you are young and don’t vote Labor you don’t have a heart.
        If you are old and don’t vote Liberal you don’t have a brain.

        • @Boomengineering

          For many that will be the dynamic. But I actually think there is a far larger dynamic (even for older people – I am mid 50s myself) of people who have let go of the progressive and reform side of politics (though they often still believe in the principles) who simply no longer vote for the ‘left’ and find there is nothing really there for them to vote for, and who, in the face of that perception, find themselves now voting on their own personal self interest (and they would often agree that it is against the self interest of their children and the broader economic betterment of the nation they are part of) because that is all that is there for them to vote for.

          I even know Liberal voters who will say straight out they vote for the here and now and dont want to think about what following generations will need to do because they think the economic future is utterly trashed.

          And to go back to the original piece about NZ. I actually know NZers, Poms, Irish guys, Canadians and Americans who are all saying roughly the same thing. Maybe its just me and the types of people I keep in contact with – but I do think there is something there.

          • I feel your pain as a “once was left”, mid fifties kinda guy. Still feeling that desire not to go all in on the self interest thing, so now I go for whoever’s on the ticket that actually stands a chance of getting in and is most likely to cause pain to the government of the day. Incumbent goes last, of course…

          • Display NameMEMBER

            Both sides of politics have been bought. Many of the political actors are someone else’s useful idiots.

            When the PM’s office looks like the Canberra branch of the MCA or the BCA, (take your pick), what chance does policy that is in the interest of the average tax payer have. Any that does happen is a side effect of pursuing their own party interests or their donors,

            Clearly I am jaded, but on the big issues, energy , climate , education, innovation, taxation I think I could back the above statements far too often.The system is broken. A new party is needed.Or a bunch of them so they are harder for donors to herd and purchase,

        • And reality has always reflected that. You go to any Uni dorm and there are left wing papers strewn around the joint and the inhabitants are idealists. Once they’ve left Uni, joined the work force and started to accumulate wealth, that all changes.

          • Get ready for it not to happen this time around. They are too poor now to have much worth protecting.

          • Agreed, that’s a possibility. And when that cohort cannot have the life their parents had, that’s when the political winds start to shift and major change becomes a higher probability.

        • If you are young and don’t vote Labor you don’t have a heart.
          If you are old and don’t vote Liberal you don’t have a brain.

          Typical conservative propaganda.

          In reality it is children who are selfish, short-sighted and greedy.

          Empathy, perspective and temperance come with maturity.

      • Another “once was left” bloke here. Or rather, once was Labor. I still have a lot of classical left views, but the supposed mainstream party of the left does not. They are narcissistic sociopathic scum who only care about themselves.

    • Not surprisingly, the Guardian manages to avoid mentioning Ardern’s election promise to reduce immigration, and her failure to deliver it. Instead we hear about housing and inequality. We even hear from an advocate for migrant workers, but nothing on how ordinary New Zealanders wanted a bit less population pressure.

      • It’s almost like the original inhabitants don’t exist at all. Extraordinary that pollies have gotten away with ignoring the base for so long.

        It’ll be ugly when the locals finally get fed up.

    • boomengineeringMEMBER

      Well that holds true for my house buying as after having lost it all was far too cautious doing a Gavin large dep. If I had dived in earlier could have bought at less than half price. Despite being wrong for over 20yrs about impending crash I think now is the time only for shelter not capital gain.

      • Agree, big deposit like I did means I’ll sleep well at night. Can’t put a price on that. Especially now that my wife is pregnant with our first child.

        I don’t think things can be sustained the way they are long term. It will all unravel soon enough

      • Arthur Schopenhauer

        I was in exactly the same boat Boomer. I waited 10 years after I could have to buy, while saving every penny. Housing appreciated at about the same rate of my savings.

        • It sucks, but what’s really going on is the purchasing power of money is being eroded. Hence stocks have gone nuts again because of more QE and lower teh rates forever.

          That was why I bought, I couldn’t fight the Fed forever and I had sold a majority of my equities and was all in cash. So needed to buy some kind of asset to stop my purchasing power being destroyed and I already had too many classic cars. Lol.

    • That’s what happens when monetary policy and gov incentives are wrong. Saving a larger deposit costs you, not just a little, but enough that it can make financial sense to max out a credit card to push your current deposit up.

      I don’t know how much longer this can go on, but I expect central banks to extend this lunacy via any means necessary. And I expect wealth will continue to trickle up and the central bankers will continue to BS us with quarter truths about their actions being a result of trying to help the lowest paid.

      • The flip side of this is that, the longer this lunacy goes on, the bigger will be the bust. The only way to ‘win’ is to play the game but get out at (or near) the top. How many normal people will manage that? Most will be left holding the baby when this ship goes down.

        • I don’t expect a widespread crash. There will be a flood of liquidity coming to hold up asset prices. Savers and younger generations will foot the bill.

        • If you could time it great, but if I have learnt anything it’s that timing is almost impossible so just hold long term and ride it out (low leverage), I sold a bunch of stock early in the year and they appreciate 40% in the last few months. It’s not sane or logical but it shows that if you sell during a wobble you miss out. Good thing I bought a house in October because I’d be further behind again if I didn’t.

          I agree it should crash, but I somehow think those who should pay, won’t again. The young will be canon fodder and their quality of life will continue to suffer.

  3. Real analysis of the corona virus situation from Imperial college london. Fascinating stuff. Quality.

    Interesting takeaways are that lots of people are going to get infected and not even know they have it and the Chinese case numbers are bulls*it as they are only including those with travel history to Wuhan and Hebei not everyone who has the virus.

    • I’m still pi$$ed and amazed people are shocked about dodgy Chinese corona virus numbers considering this same Government that accurately predicts GDP numbers to with one or two basis points BEFORE they’re released!

      • Well it had to be before doesn’t it? How do the plebs know what number everything should add up to? The GDP is the input to the whole process to ensure the production numbers are divided correctly. Duh.

    • I have no idea where they determine that only ‘traveller from Hubei’ is tested and reported, because the Chinese newspaper is full of stories about how people who never went to Hubei catching the virus.

  4. Arthur Schopenhauer

    Another 70 test positive on the Ghost Ship 🛳.

    How many cruise 🚢 lines will go bust by New Years Eve?

  5. reusachtigeMEMBER

    The commie tone in this left wing propaganda piece sh1ts me to no end!
    The fact is, only a farkn idiot wears a useless ugly mask that makes them look like a sucker. If suckers gonna pay top dollar let the farkn idiots pay. Supply and demand you farkn commie scum-lords!! We’re a free society and goods and services should be priced accordingly, not to some scum commie directive.

    • Don’t worry, the ACCC these days goes to court when a company lower prices, not when it raise prices.

  6. Why is the Australian government now trying to rescue people on the quarantined ship?
    The whole point of quarantine is quarantine, if every nation is trying to get their people off it, it completely defeats the purpose.
    Seems the equivalent of Japan offering to send a plane load of arsonists to Australia during the next bush fire season.

    • Won’t they dump them on Christmas Island?
      It seems like this thing can be asymptomatic for long periods…42 days? That’ll change quarantine.

      • Christmas Island is now full. Is it really a proper quarantine anyway if you have to land people in Darwin and then transfer them back to Christmas Island.

        • Well, the devil is in the details. But this thing looks highly contagious and so far as I know we are still letting people in from throughout SE Asia, so we’re going to hear a lot more about quarantine (and maybe even get a little holiday ourselves)

        • V – all those on Christmas Island are being flown back to oz tomorrow morning. But I suspect that a planeload of WWBB (wealthy white baby boomers) would not take kindly to being sent to the prison island for vibrants so scrotomo will likely find somewhere on the mainland for the cruise ship people.

    • That was painful to read. Nationals justifying why their own electorates got f*@k all and how their bigger brother siphoned most of the funds for their own electorates.

  7. Really having a good time watching this 12 Monkeys thingy with a huge cast …. whom knew irrational fear was more diabolical than a virus …

    • Irrational fear, skip. Really? This looks like it could plunge the world into recession. Two more weeks of this and it’s a dead cert.

        • Vote for Sanders … lmmao …

          The psychology and people wanting things to blow up because their ideological preferences are not being served is a curious case of self flagellation, mostly by others though for some reason E.g. proponents always seem to think they will ride it out to be victorious or vindicated.

          Must be something to do with their self awarded notion of “Rational Thought” [TM].

          • I know why doesn’t 1 just knel down flogging there back with there own belt strap while looking at mastakes made on the portfolio

      • Lmmao …. alternate to my reply below …

        Trump said publicly that if you did not vote for him your portfolio would go poof … so based on that which do you think has more capacity to bring on a recession or depression – a mindless virus or a mindless bug. Per the ‘never let a crisis go to waste’ which seems more a threat to everything …. then some wonder how we got here in the first place – the recession we needed to have ….

        • Trump is a total dingbat – I get it – but this virus has literally shut down the fastest growing, most important economy in the world.

          There is absolutely no equivalence in impact. None – not even close

    • Yeah, this virus is nothing compared to ranting about the Powell memo for the 100th time in February alone.

      • Yet the mental virus has been around a lot longer and more responsible for the world we live in, plus the human agency factor, covid19 has no agency – which informed that everything was a market and humans were self owning commodities in it.


    Forget Sars, the new coronavirus threatens a meltdown in China’s economy … Cary Huang … SCMP

    … extracts …

    … Thirdly, China’s rapid urbanisation means Chinese are now much more likely to travel domestically and abroad than two decades ago. This also means that when they stop travelling, the disruption is greater. The country has 288 million migrant workers, who account for about a third of China’s labour force. Many who travelled to rural homes for the holidays will be either unable or unwilling to return to work in the cities. Even if they are not frightened of the health consequences, there are travelling restrictions in force and many flights, rail services and long-distance buses have been halted. …

    … Sixthly, for the millions of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in China, the nightmare may be just beginning. Many small manufacturers fear foreign customers will shift orders to other countries due to disruptions in production and delivery. In a survey of 995 SMEs by academics from Tsinghua and Peking universities, 85 per cent said they would be unable to survive for more than three months under the current conditions. If the disruption goes on long enough, it could trigger a wave of bankruptcy among SMEs, which contribute more than 60 per cent of China’s GDP, 70 per cent of its patents and account for 80 per cent of jobs nationwide. … read more via hyperlink above …
    Coronavirus: 70 more cases on Japan cruise ship as China infections pass 68,000 … The Guardian

  9. There is still something very odd about the mortality data.…navirus-cases/

    Wuhan city and Hubei province have always had a much higher mortality than the rest of China. That has been explained by the fact the health system is overwhelmed and there are not enough hospital beds and not enough ventilators….. That would make sense. BUT the very 1st WHO sitreps (21,22 and 23 January) report a high mortality when there were only few hundred cases across the province. That number of cases could not have overwhelmed a province of 60 million people. The mortality was high from the outset.…uation-reports

    Now have a look at the other provinces with the next highest mortality.
    The provinces closest to Hubei have the highest mortality (not the highest number of cases, but the highest mortality).

    We know that 5,000,000 people escaped Wuhan and Hubei before the lockdown on 23 January. They mostly drove, and so it is likely they ended up in adjacent provinces rather than provinces on the other side of the country.

    We know China was working with Coronaviruses
    We know this virus is too weak / too slow to be a bioweapon
    We know previous coronavirus research was complicated by the fact that animals who received the trial vaccine had a higher mortality when exposed to the virus that did animals who did not get the vaccine. In other words, the vaccine was hazardous rather than protective

    We also know the first few people infected had no apparent connection to the wet market.

    The more this goes on, the more suspicious that BS-4 lab in Wuhan is looking.

    Finally, the dramatic increase in Hubei cases a few days ago had the effect (either incidental or by design) of significantly lowering the Hubei mortality and making this disparity less obvious.