Macro Afternoon

See the latest Australian dollar analysis here:

Bitcoin has killed gold (for now)

Asian stock markets are mixed given the lack of confidence on Wall Street overnight, as strong US economic data continues to push the USD higher and leaves the risk markets a little hesitant. The latest unemployment figures locally didn’t cause much movement while the return of mainland Chinese markets saw the only bright spot across the region. Bitcoin remains well above the magical $50K level, pushing through the $52K as it continues to literally double from Christmas last year in a big meltup bubble:

The Shanghai Composite returned from the Chinese NY holiday, lifting over 0.7% to be at 2685 points while the Hang Seng Index had a breather, pulling back 1.2%, currently at 30699 points. Meanwhile Japanese markets also remain in pullback mode, with the Nikkei 225 finishing 0.2% lower at 30233 points as the USDJPY pair steadies just below the 106 level after failing to extend gains above the 106.20 level overnight:

The ASX200 returned a scratch session with a thirty point trading range ending up finishing only a point higher at 6886 points while the Australian dollar traded around the unemployment print, briefly touching the 77.20 level before coming back to where it started the day at the mid 77’s as it continues to track sideways:

Eurostoxx and S&P futures were tracking slightly higher this afternoon but have pulled back just before the European opening session, with the four hourly chart of the S&P500 in hesitation mode  with the clear breakout above the 3900 point level starting to waver here as momentum goes negative:

The economic calendar includes the ECB minutes and US initial jobless claims.

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  1. New Zealand Government Bond Yields Soar …

    A review of things you need to know before you go home on Thursday; Crown accounts edge back into surplus in December month, median age rises, bond yields rise, swaps firm, NZD slips, & more … David Chaston … Interest Co NZ

    https://www.interest.co.nz/news/109120/review-things-you-need-know-you-go-home-thursday-crown-accounts-edge-back-surplus

    … extract …

    … INVESTORS GET HIGHER RISK-FREE YIELDS

    Today’s NZGB tender brought noticeably higher yields, but investor demand was lower than recently. The April 2025 $200 mln attracted $270 mln in bids and the winning yields averaged 0.60% pa, almost double those of three weeks ago or 0.34%. The April 2029 $150 mln offer attracted bids of $390 mln and the winning yields averaged 1.25% pa, well above the prior 0.81%. The final $100 mln for the April 2033 offer attracted $268 mln in bids and the yield was 1.67%, a jump from the prior 1.18% three weeks earlier. Overall there were 91 bids, but only 19 succeeded, and that left $578 mln unsatisfied, the lowest in a long time.

    • happy valleyMEMBER

      Peanut differences, albeit admittedly on a duration basis a 1% pa increase in the bond interest rate at these gutter levels will have roughly a 10% capital value diminution effect?

      • 4 % capital loss on the Index fund in Australia so far , but with the RBA buying up gov. bonds hand over fist distributions are holding up. No one is going to buy 0.25% bonds unless the RBA promises to buy them back on a regular basis. They are a savings vehicle now.

  2. Family Court of Australia will be abolished.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-02-18/family-court-merger-federal-circuit-court-reactions/13168506

    Expect more of these to happen as people are thrown in jail due to self representation.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-01-31/proposed-lawsuit-could-test-whether-judge-can-be-sued-for-senten/11910592

    More than 70% of applicants in the Family Court in divorce proceedings are self represented. To put them in front of judges who are used to handling criminal cases is, as Jacqui Lambie, a ‘train wreck in action’.

    There as a comprehensive review of the Family Law which recommended the abolishment of the Family Court along with simplifying the law in property division in divorce cases.

    https://www.alrc.gov.au/inquiry/review-of-the-family-law-system/

    Unfortunately, ScoMo is only interested in scoring political points so The Family Court got abolished but the law didn’t change at all. It will be held as a ‘victory’ until people need to wait 5 years before they can get their case heard in court due to the overload, then the next government will just have to resurrect it again to deal with the case load.

        • Apparently, Pauline may have a son with some domestic/divorce issues.

          Net, they will stack the Federal Court with paid – off LNP hacks, just like they are doing with the ART.

        • Hanson fails to understand the problem is the Family Law, not the Family Court. The horror stories for the self-represented male divorcee is only going to get worse.

          Hanson’s crusade against the Family Court is a result of her son Adam Hanson pleaded guilty in a Cairns court to breaching a domestic violence order. She still believes her son is faultless and everything must be a lie, even though he pleaded guilty.

          • It’s the qanon way. These are disastrous people with no policy and fervent zeal, like Trump these clowns exploit public grievances to settle personal scores…

    • I see a 5 year delay as a positive, many family law matters that end up in court should never have gotten there, they only get there because one party is being unreasonable and bullying the other. I had a simple family law matter that should have never made it to court cost close to 80k, its disgusting.

        • My psychopathic first wife refused me access to my three children so she could maximise the amount of family support I had to pay her. I had to make the bitter choice between having enough money to look after my kids or blowing it all on lawyers. I rolled over, and for more than a decade I only saw my children every second weekend as they grew up without me there to be their Dad.

          During this period she spent over $8000 of my money on breast enlargement surgery while my kids were going to school with holes in their pants and the toes blown out of shoes. I had to buy them clothes and shoes. Then there was the booze and smokes and dope…

          The boob job worked, but the husband after me came home one day to find her rooting another bloke in the marital bed, and he didn’t roll over and spent close to $70K fighting her refusal to grant him access to his son for no reason. He “won” but at vast financial cost.

          It’s easy to post glib comments on a blog about things you don’t understand. If the subject is trivial, well, who cares? When the subject is men being unable to see their children for a decade while being impoverished, you should think twice before hitting “submit”.

          • The Traveling Wilbur

            But this is the problem, that’s the sort of thing that should be simple, but isn’t. Simple matters are going to cost you (these days) $20k all up to get in front of a judge (eventually). And then you’re done in 5 minutes and 1 handed-down decision. But, like the comment posted by the person Mig replied to, most people don’t want to spend 20k when the matter is a truly simple one. That’s why those stories are ones you don’t hear – they hardly ever happen.

            So… what did the $80k disappear on? Nothing that’s had $80k spent on it is “simple”. Surely?

          • Bullsh!t motherfkr I can tell you scores of stories that are the exact opposite! So you had a sht marriage, so did many others – how exactly would 5 years have changed anything??

            You’re not complaining about the same that just happened, kids won’t be any better off and all that will happen is someone will save some money – disgusting.

          • A lot of unnecessary anguish and pain can be avoided if child support is abolished all together.

          • Very good post mate. As a forty year old bloke I know at least six peers who have paid over 50k to get access. Remember all that man hating talk of deadbeat dads.

            Now he has told me he is concerned that he still may have to pay child support past them being 18 because the ex was too lazy to send them to school. And they will be still enrolled after 18.

          • Yeah some of them aren’t too bright mate. My ex started dumping my daughter on me at short notice so she could live the single life, thereby undermining her own accusations and case. Figure that one out?? It’s all about validation, some people need a soap-opera and drama so they can justify their perverse decisions. The psychopathy is remarkable.

        • Mig, the court system is abused. I had an ex accuse me of being a cocaine trafficker, mentally incompetent and a domestic violence perpetrator without a skerrick of evidence. Her wealthy parents funded a case against me to effectively steal my daughter – they lost, I have more contact with my daughter now than my ex does. The case should have never come near the court is was so absurd and there are absolutely no consequences for the party that makes false accusations, even costs are never awarded in family law. Any family lawyer will tell you that most affidavits are full of lies with the aim of getting cases expedited etc. The costs are extraordinary, good luck getting a decent barrister for under 5k for the day (sometimes the judge won’t turn up so you’ll be back), private mediation with a barrister and solicitor 1500 per hr, family report writer 5k, solicitor to write affidavit, deal with correspondence and attend court 650 per hr – 80k is nothing when you’re fighting people with deep pockets. If I hadn’t received an inheritance at the time I wouldn’t be seeing my daughter now.

          It was a simple matter, all I wanted was to have the same contact I had always had with my daughter. The system is broken beyond belief. As someone else mentioned there should be a tribunal system where parties are only allowed to self-represent.

          It was probably the most traumatic experience of my life, it was a few years ago now and I still think about it all the time.

          • My second ex called the cops and told them I was carrying firearms around in an attempt to get me in trouble. Not a good time. She also said she’d claim I’d raped her if I didn’t give her $20K cash straight away. Because she’s not a criminal genius she actually wrote that to me in an email, so I passed that on to the cops who paid her a visit, discussed blackmail laws and told her to settle down with the malicious claims or she’d be in front of the beak.

            Blokes are definitely on the back foot with family law.

          • I occasionally wonder what terrible thing happened to this Migtronix character to make him the way he is.

      • The Traveling Wilbur

        @Mig Should we add NRL penalties for time wasting to the list?

        Were you sleeping with your solicitor? That would have been a good(ish) reason to fork out for about 200 hours of legal rep for a “simple … matter”. And that’s accounting for court costs separately.

        • Someone ElseMEMBER

          I hooked up with a lady-lawyer once. High-falutin’, PhD’ed, international type. Very pretty, elegant 1940’s fashion sense.

          She saved me motza in lawyering costs. I did pay her in kind, so she got a pretty good deal too.

          • The Traveling Wilbur

            Upstairs for thinking. Downstairs for saving money on lawyers, groceries and getting out of traffic stops/tickets.

            I have to say, the sooner gender balance is achieved across all workplaces the better.

      • The delay will only make it more expensive, not cheaper. Family Law really should be a tribunal rather than a court.

        Most of the backlog is a result from asylum seekers using the court system to get a protection visa : that gives them work rights straight away. By adding the family court disputes to the same court system, the ‘visa abuse’ will only get worse.

      • Yes must look after our private school drones they followed the rules to the letter it would be discussing to throw them in the trash u know rules are rules jsk0

  3. A poster yesterday corrected me on the fact TFF was not solely intended to business lending, and is in fact primarily used to lower mortgage rates by ultimately replacing more expensive offshore funding.

    With this realisation, I am now thinking we have got it all wrong on how low mortgage rates could go. With 40% (?) of mortgage credit coming via offshore lending, that means RBA could go deeply negative on TFF rates for the existing 40% and goodness know how much more new credit on top of that, without dropping the cash rate below zero. Is my understanding correct on this?

      • They have gone beyond the proverbial every trick in the book. There must be a point where workers realise they are being led into debt peonage with no way to live without getting into astronomical levels of debt. The pitchforks must come out at some stage. On that point, I recommend listening to the latest Jolly Swagman podcast.

        • “with no way to live without getting into astronomical levels of debt. ”
          We’ve been there for quite a while. No pitchforks yet though.

          The vast majority of workers wouldn’t know what the TFF was let alone the effect it has. Lower rates just mean housing is more affordable to an awful lot of people.

          “Rates will always be lower under the libs”, remember.

  4. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    Packing my ute this morning before a hot water heater job I noticed the 6 metre length of 40mm Unistrut I had unstraped from the roof racks the night before was still there on the roof.
    I was about to take it off after loading some stuff into the lock up boxes when the Kids, who were outside, said “Dad look at that big wasps nest”
    Right outside the back door and about 3m up was a large nest in our 60 year old magnolia tree.
    I wanted to get to work but thought Id better sort out the wasps first.
    So I put up a ladder and climbed it with my propane turbo torch in one hand and a full 500ml spray bottle of methylated spirits in the other.
    There were a lot of wasps buzzing about but I pointed my turbo torch in the right direction, pulled the trigger and started cooking the nest.
    At the same time I started spraying the nest with metho. This burnt several dozen leaves much to the excitement of the kids and quite soon after the nest fell to the ground.
    There were dozens of half dead wasps wriggling on the ground along with the nest full of eggs so I started spraying broadly from a kneeling position near by.
    The spray bottle leaks quite a bit so I had Metho all over my hand and wouldn’t ya know it my hand caught on fire. I immediately threw the bottle away from the kids and the house onto the grass and started waving my hand around trying to blow out the flames but only succeeding by pating out the flames on my pants.

    Of course the Kids thought it hilarious.

    It burnt all the hairs on the front of my fingers and I got a few small blisters there as well.
    Nothing a few band-aids didn’t fix though.

    Anyway I then set off to work.
    3 rights and 2 lefts to get onto the bussy Victoria rd at the blue star servo.
    The traffic picked up speed a bit past the KFC and across Marsden rd but at the last second I decided to turn into the BP/McDonalds and as I did the 6 metre length of Galvanised steel Unistrut flew sideways of the roof racks and crashed onto the driveway and foot path right in front of a group of High school kids on the way to the nearby school.
    Missed 3 of them by less than 2 Metres!
    Circled the ute up into a parking space and quickly retrieved the strut and tied it back down onto the roof racks.
    That thing could have done a lot of damage to a person or car.

    After the burn and this near miss I was feeling pretty jinxed in spite of not believing in such superstitious nonsense.
    Been taking it easy all day.

  5. Arthur Schopenhauer

    Facebook is doing the country a favor. Our great northern neighbor restricting rare early metals, following up with another favor.

    Bradbury should be on the $100- note.

  6. Clown world downunder

    “We will not be intimidated’: PM takes Facebook fight to India and the world”

    Does this bozo have any idea how many Indians are employed by “bigtech” 😂😂

  7. Here’s a thought. Maybe this shows the true machination of scomo. There is currently a political scandal that can bring the govt down and he engineers a situation whereby media giants won’t spread the news story that can bring him down.

  8. Ranked: The World’s Least Affordable Cities To Buy A Home … Zerohedge

    https://www.zerohedge.com/personal-finance/ranked-worlds-least-affordable-cities-buy-home

    In certain parts of the world, housing prices have risen much faster than household incomes, making home ownership increasingly more difficult for the average Joe.

    Using data from Demographia published in 2020, this graphic from Visual Capitalist’s Carmen Ang looks at some of the world’s most expensive housing markets. …

    … concluding …

    … Keep in mind, these figures are from Q3’2019. Considering the pandemic-induced suburban shuffle that’s been going on in some of America’s major housing markets, this list could look a bit different in Demographia’s next report.

    • happy valleyMEMBER

      Nah – this effort from PB Tim Wilson is sheer brilliance and only what you’d expect from the best ever managers at everything. Those FHB grants involve taxpayer handouts for FHBs to be able to piss the grant up against the wall in bidding up house prices, whereas this way FHBs will be using their own hard-earned to piss up against the wall in pursuit of the moronic Strayan dream.

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