Macro Afternoon

See the latest Australian dollar analysis here:

Australian dollar taken hostage by dramatic US election

Share markets are lifting across most of Asia, although Chinese bourses are flagging, as Wall Street helped increase risk taking and optimism. Gold remains flat after its pullback overnight, still unable to get back to its former historic and weekly highs above the $2000USD per ounce level, with price decelerating into the $1965USD per ounce level:

In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite is putting in a scratch session to be unchanged just above 3400 points while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng Index is off a little, down 0.3% to 25101 points. Japanese stock markets are doing much better than previously, with the Nikkei 225 closing 0.5% higher as the USDJPY pair tries to push higher above the 106 handle but is meeting a lot of resistance:

The ASX200 continues to be the odd one out, but this time to the upside! Can’t let a once in a generation recession get it down, with a 1.8% surge higher to be back above the 6000 point level as the Australian dollar remains unable to crack the 74 handle finding lots of resistance overhead:

Eurostoxx futures are up 0.7% or so alongside S&P moves with the S&P500 four hourly chart indicating another breakout tonight as it extends its gains above the 3500 point level as traders take another big deep breath into the abyss:

Latest posts by Chris Becker (see all)


    • I’d be staggered if that statement about public service staff were true — I reckon there’s more public servants in QLD today than there was in all of Straya (federal and state) in 1992.

      • Arthur Schopenhauer

        The Qld Public Works Department was huge, and competent. It no longer exists.

        A lot of essential services that have been privatized since then. The numbers look to be accurate.

        It shows how much government capacity has been lost since then. Much of the government failings in dealing with Covid comes down to not having the institutions or people to create, and more importantly, execute, a competent plan.

        30 years of outsourcing deskills a government. Who coulda…

        • I suspect what’s at work here is that neither contractors (nor casuals) are counted in the employment numbers.

          Agreed that a lot of services have been privatized (in some fashion) but if you add all the above into the numbers you’ll find that the ‘original’ public sector has grown substantially.

          What I would say though is, when you have a ‘suite’ of public services, everyone gets to pay for them including those who don’t use them. When that suite gets thinned down, the people who actually use them get to pay for them, which is only fair, quite frankly. The problem, in general, with privatisations is that they are very poorly structured leaving the taxpayer short-changed almost every time. So, it’s not privatisation itself that’s the problem, it’s the morons who execute the deal that are the problem. The privatisations are almost universally a total fck up (and I should know, because I was involved in a few so had a front row seat).

          • Arthur Schopenhauer

            If privatizations continuously fail, it’s the concept not the implementation.
            If you ever have a stroke, and need 3 years of intensive rehabilitation, would you like your family to pay for that or have it amortized across all users of the health system?

          • Arthur, sorry your logic is flawed. The reason privatisations tend to fail is because the people on the Govt side in charge of the transaction have made a decision to execute the deal and end up doing so ‘on any terms’ — usually highly favourable to the buyer and detrimental to the taxpayer and consumer. These people have precisely zero skin in the game — their jobs are not at risk and they have no financial interest. I have never come across an instance where a privatisation has not taken place, once it’s been slated, on the grounds that the terms were ‘not acceptable to the taxpayer and citizens at large.’ Not one.

            The Govt staff involved are judged on whether they get the deal done – not what the terms or consequences are.

        • Jumping jack flash


          Government sells off its power and jurisdiction to enact change. Thanks, Thatcherism.

      • It’s the sell off of the power utilities. Ausgrid had over 10,000 staff. Queensland Rail had nearly 10,000. Transgrid had thousands.

        When was Telstra sold? Those were all former public servants.

        Its not an apples to apples comparison. I’d say the non-frontline bureaucrats sitting in offices has exploded ….

        • That’s probably about right. More lazy journalism (or perhaps an ideologue bending the truth again)

    • “We want to see quality projects that the community can get behind and support.”

      – and therein lies the problem Mark, the projects are piss-poor quality, are far too dense and the community is simply not behind them in any way what so ever!!!! No-one wants your density!

      • Not surprised. I’ve been saying from outset he’s pretty dense – and no one wants or likes it.

    • There is a lot of infill occuring in my suburb. But the process is buy a block bulldoze it then put 3 dog boxes on it with closet size rooms then list each of the 3 at virtually the same price the entire original block cost with house. And people are buying them. Developers are walking away with huge profits for selling shoddy dig boxes for the same price as the original entire block. Then that price becomes the norm. It’s obscene.

      • darklydrawlMEMBER

        SE Melbourne bayside as well – happens on nearly every block they sell. Single family home pulled down and 2 / 3 ‘luxury’ (haha!) townhouses built. Naturally the ratepayers have to pick up the added expense of expanding the drains and sewer systems that needs upgrading due to the additional demand of more residents on the system. More noise on bin day too I note. Meh!

        I have seen them construct these things – they are sooo cheaply built. :-/

          • What happens when that gig ends? I know local retired builders who have been ‘blessed’ with riches from doing the subdivision thing multiple times over and now encouraging their kids to get into the same. I’m sure there will be regret down the line.

        • Arthur Schopenhauer

          Happening in NE Melbourne too. Gearing up to go to VCAT, yet again: 20 something apartments on 2 x 600sqm blocks in the middle of leafy suburbia.

          Strip mining the suburbs.

        • That shocking build quality. I wonder how long until that bites us all in the arse. Can’t be eco-friendly either. How sad.

    • “Speaking to a Property Council lunch on Friday, Mr McGowan told the development industry his government was “ambitious when it comes to development, housing or planning”.

      Yeah, but the people don’t want mass third world immigration and the problems that come with it.

      Last year, after lobbying from greedy business, universities, tourist sector and gleeful acceptance of the feds, the traitor McGowan back flipped allowing international students to work here w

      “Perth will be a more attractive destination for international students, with the Federal Government reinstating Perth’s status as a regional city, helping to create local jobs.”

      • Pollies need to shore up their positions and get themselves paid (and take a few backhanders if that’s their thing). So, Keynesian economics is their thing — more people = more GDP. Simples.

    • “I’m a supporter of density, I’m not afraid to say it,” he said.
      I assume he lives in a high density arrangement then. Can anyone confirm this?

  1. hey Chris.. in the past you used to also report on what economic print/reports to watch for which I found very useful..
    If not too much trouble, is it possible to add a line at the end of each Arvo report?

  2. Mining BoganMEMBER

    I forgot about this. The little niggles are coming back.

    “Hi Bogan,

    We’re getting in touch to let you know that some of the COVID-19 support measures we put in place for credit cards are ending from 28 September 2020.

    What does that mean for you?

    Your minimum monthly payment will return to the calculation in your terms and conditions (usually the greater of 2% of the closing balance or $25) from this date;

    If you have a direct debit set up to pay only your minimum monthly payment (rather than a fixed amount or your closing balance) we’ll automatically debit the new amount from this date;

    The late payment fee of $15 will return if you don’t pay your minimum monthly payment due on or after this date.”


    One In Four Workers Say They Are Working Entirely From Home: Gallup … Zerohedge

    By Jeffrey Jones of Gallup,

    The coronavirus pandemic has led to a surge in remote work. However, that surge is more apparent in the number of remote working days for telecommuters than in the number of workers moving from on-site to at-home work. … read more via hyperlink above …

  4. Arthur Schopenhauer

    There are a number of excessive town planning applications in the neighborhood. It doesn’t stack up against the current state of the Victorian economy. The funny money appears to be flowing back into the economy, like a spring stream.

  5. I wonder if ADP and non-farms have any other effect this week than market rocket. A USD effect or bond effect. Good ADP and Non farms = good economy and Fed keeping rates low so market rocket. Bad ADP and NF = more stimulus of somekind = market rocket, but I wonder if the pattern will change this time, particularly if it’s a strong print.

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      I’ve retweeted that a number of times today.
      The authoritarian Andrews Government needs to be overthrown by riots in the streets.

      • I’m honestly shocked

        I never thought Australia would fall this far this quickly to fascism

        And over something so absurd

        And to be honest David and Leith bear some responsibility along with the rest of the media for catastrophising , and closing the door to debate and reason

        This is making me very nervous about the future of the country

        Certainly I would get the f out of victoria if I lived there

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      🤣 Not even close to to Stasi, Mr Coming. Not even close! And the KGB’s brutality put the Stasi to shame.

      If you think that’s eastern block brutality you need to take a long hard look in the mirror and HTFU. 😀

          • Arresting a person at home for “incitement” because they were posting about a Facebook protest about lockdowns.
            I wouldn’t have believed such a thing possible 6 weeks ago. Yet here we are.
            None of these descents into police and state overreach occurs because one day the state suddenly found it had arrogated excessive power to itself.
            It happens incrementally.
            To deny it shows a deep ignorance of history.

        • Others have also been arrested for organising rallies. So she isn’t being made an example of. Does being pregnant suddenly raise one above the law? As a story it gets more clicks than a shut in being arrested for doing the same thing. Especially if you’re filming it and can upload the film to cry “Poor me!” and fish for sympathy. How daft must you be to organise a public gathering during a lock down to deal with a dangerous
          contagious disease. It’s akin to publicly announcing a sprinkler party during stage 5 water restrictions because you don’t like not being able to water your lawn or hose down your driveway.

          • How daft must you be to protest state oppression?

            Yes, sure

            See Olof’s comment above

            Eventually they’ll come for you as well

          • I was worried about mission creep. But I am relieved to know others have been arrested for organising rallies.
            That changes everything and means the police entering a private residence with a warrant over a Facebook post and arresting this woman is much more acceptable.
            I thought they might have started by entering private homes about socially distanced protests encouraging mask-wearing but it is reassuring to know that this is occurring further down the track after other people have been previously arrested.
            I trust the wisdom and sagacity of our politicians implicitly and know that they would not overreach or infringe anyone’s rights. Same with the police.

          • State oppression? What would happen if you encouraged people to have burnoffs and bonfires during a total fire ban?

            re the ahistorical comparisons: you’ll know when fascism arrives; it’ll be when the libertarians stop whining about the government and start collaborating with true fascists to fight the left, like they did in the 30s, Hayek/Pinochet etc.

          • What would happen if you urged people to start fires during a fire ban ?

            Absolutely nothing

            Got an example of something happening to someone who urged but didn’t start a fire themselves ?

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        Creeping authoritarianism is what we have and if it isn’t resisted it’s only going to get worse.
        Though I’ve been pretty neutral on the issue up until recently I am now becoming increasingly revolted by all those calling for greater “lockdown” powers and enforcement. So often by people who don’t need to go out into the community to work. By Shutins the least likely to be exposed

        My work is classified an essential service and if a customer goes to shake my hand I shake it,…but if they decline my hand it’s no big deal to me either. I spray meself down with metho after every job but my risk is still high so I’m cool with people not wanting to shake hands with a Plumber,… but the other night, dropping my kid of to cubs another parent there asked my name and that of my boy. I told him and asked his and offered my hand. He immediately said, quite annoyed, oh no I’m not shaking anyone’s hand.
        I thought what a weak grubby Cnvt you are.
        Why even introduce yourself dcikhead and said OK and walked off.
        Looking at that clip has me thinking I’d rather see a million Australians die than have my family have to answer to fascist cnvts like those vic police entering people’s homes with impunity.

        • That’s right
          The negligible mortality and the economic damage is really insignificant in comparison to the loss of liberty and freedom
          And the degradation of our quality of life, especially kids

          I feel sorry for everyone in Melbourne

          Get out , the place is stuffed

          Even NSW is better , if only for the fact that Gladys will look after her hotelier and construction mates and the rest of us benefit as a side effect

        • Ermo, Dan is an amateur compared to Porter and Dutton. Get your priorities sorted out.
          We have a classic case of dragging a dead cat over the scene to stop people watching what our lovely Fed LNP are up to under the cover of CV19..

        • Thanks Ermo.

          Some of us, regardless of our political officiation, know what needs to be done.

    • So is it as good as the secret trial being stage managed by Porter and Dutton in Canberra so that the LNP b*stadry toward East Timor by Howard and Lord Downer on behalf of Woodside is covered up (too late, everyone knows).
      Porter and Dutton (cheered on by LNP and IPA) are working on much more evil longterm spying activities.
      Dan is a rank amateur compared to our Fed LNP.

      • To be frank I dont give a stuff what happens in East Timor

        This is happening in the suburbs of Melbourne right now

        I care about my family and my kids future

        • The secret trial is running in Canberra now. Dan is the amateur.

          I live in Melbourne and unless the COVID situation is taken much more seriously, we deserve to be locked up until Xmas. I do not want my kids, grandkids and elderly father affected by it because some libertarian/free thinker wants to impose their values on me.

          • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

            Then lock your self up if you’re so paranoid about it but don’t demand others be locked up.

          • Plenty of commie boot lickers in here
            Not sure why these people dont want freedom and prosperity
            average age of death of covid is over 85 y.o now

          • He gazed up at the enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden beneath the dark moustache. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast! Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.

      • Sites can go downhill rapidly when people start posting the pastor but you deserve it
        First they came for the Communists
        And I did not speak out
        Because I was not a Communist
        Then they came for the Socialists
        And I did not speak out
        Because I was not a Socialist
        Then they came for the trade unionists
        And I did not speak out
        Because I was not a trade unionist
        Then they came for the Edit
        And I did not speak out
        Because I was not a Modded comment
        Then they came for me
        And there was no one left
        To speak out for me

  6. UpperWestsideMEMBER

    This story got my interest this wet NY morning.

    “NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance said building trains in Australia was not a realistic option, estimating that it would cost an extra 25 per cent compared with overseas.”

    Maybe I am not thinking about this the right way (please correct me MB’ers) , but lets assume we built them in Australia from Australian materials paying Australian workers. Lets assume these workers pay say 25% tax ( personal + payroll + medicare + super levi ). And lets assume that the money the workers spend has the same above assumptions and tax takes.
    Then the tax take from a geometric series of 25% tax each time the dollars change hands is 1/(3/4) -1 ie 33%.

    So the China price has to be lower by more than 25% of the “Australian Made” price for any politician to claim they might be cheaper.
    ( oh and we haven’t even started on the whole network effect value of actually having a manufacturing base in Australia).