Houses and Holes


Europe debates designating LNG climate hostile

Welcome to the new frontier of LNG doom. Via FTAlphaville: This is a guest post by Rauli Partanen, an author, analyst and communicator on climate change, environment and energy systems. Partanen co-founded and leads Think Atom, a non-profit think tank advocating nuclear energy alternatives. In this post he argues Germany’s interests in natural gas are jeopardising the European Taxonomy for


RBNZ drops $20bn capital requirement on Aussie banks

Bravo RBNZ again: The Reserve Bank of New Zealand today released its final decisions following its comprehensive review of its capital framework for banks, known as the Capital Review. Governor Adrian Orr said the decisions to increase capital requirements are about making the banking system safer for all New Zealanders, and will ensure bank owners have


A parade of bad suggestions to lift growth

Let’s start the parade of bad ideas with Gottiboff: Our largest state, NSW is the country’s engine room, but it has a crazy property development approval system designed to create uncertainty and boost costs. Victoria has a deep energy crisis that makes both consumers and business nervous. Victoria creates an artificial gas shortage by banning


Lunatic RBA botches start to unconventional policy

In his recent speech describing unconventional policy options, Governor Phil Lowe noted that: The fourth policy response was forward guidance. This took two forms: calendar based and state based. Under calendar-based guidance, the central bank makes an explicit commitment not to increase interest rates until a certain point in time. Under state-based guidance, the central


HEM date with destiny set

Via the AFR: The Federal Court has set a date for the appeal against the “Wagyu and shiraz” judgment, however the regulator will be meeting a different adversary than the one it faced off against in the first half of 2019. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission will front up to a full bench of Federal


Australian dollar jumps on trade scuttlebutt

DXY was down last night as CNY jumped: The Australian dollar roared back against DMs: But EMs did better: Gold sagged: Oil lifted: Metals too: And miners: Plus EM stocks: And junk: All bonds sold: As stocks rebounded: Another day, another trade rumour, at Bloomie: The U.S. and China are moving closer to agreeing on


Caixin services PMI adds more sunshine

Via Caixin: The Caixin China Composite PMI™ data (which covers both manufacturing and services) signalled a solid increase in total business activity across China in November. The Composite Output Index rose from 52.0 in October to 53.2, to indicate the steepest rate of growth for 21 months. The upturn was driven by strong performances across


Blundell-Wignall: China’s stimulus days are over

From the always excellent Adrian Blundell-Wignall today at the AFR: In the early phases of economic development, authoritarian governments can more or less “buy” economic growth. Asia did it in the run-up to the 1998 crisis…In effect, “costs” — such as providing capital to new workers moving from the countryside to the cities — are


Household financial confidence head for Hades

Via Martin North: We continue to release the data from our household surveys to end November 2019. Today we look at our Household Financial Confidence Index, which examines how households are feeling about their financial status, relative to a year ago. The index dropped again to 83.5, which is a new low in the series,


ASX smashed

Not much fun for Aussie assets today. The Australian dollar has come off a little from its Lunatic RBA spike: Bonds too: XJO is getting creamed, down another 1.7% after 2% yesterday: And sporting a potential major double top pattern: Dalian has a mind of its own as Vale worries: Big Iron ore is thumped


How to invest now for Australian quantitative easing (QE)

According to Bloomberg, here’s how some fund managers are preparing for Aussie QE: …Australian sovereign bond yields are likely to fall across the curve as the RBA steps in as a default purchaser, said Raymond Lee, money manager at Kapstream Capital, a unit of Janus Henderson Investors. That makes government bonds a fairly compelling buy


China Cold War or Luke Warm War?

Via ASPI comes Amy King is a senior lecturer at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre at the Australian National University: For more than a century, close economic ties between China and Japan have developed in the absence of cooperative political and security relations, suggesting that the first is not a necessary precondition for the


WMO: Globe heating much faster than we thought

Some more good news for the species, not, from the World Meteorological Organisation: The year 2019 concludes a decade of exceptional global heat, retreating ice and record sea levels driven by greenhouse gases from human activities. Average temperatures for the five-year (2015-2019) and ten-year (2010-2019) periods are almost certain to be the highest on record.


Current account surges as nobody wants to buy Australia any more

The ABS released September QTR balance of payments yesterday and it threw up the largest quarterly current account surplus on record in both dollar and percentage of GDP terms: Even the annual figure turned positive: Though is less impressive (so far) in annual terms: It will likely also set recrods in the December quarter though


RBA & APRA thrilled with low mortgage property bubble

Those looking for imminent macroprudential will be disappointed I fear. From the Council of Financial Regulators: Financing conditions and the housing market. Council members discussed trends in credit and recent developments in the housing market. Growth in housing credit remains subdued overall, with credit to investors particularly weak. Owner-occupier loan commitments and housing turnover in


How long can ScoMo protect CCP cash stooge Gladys Liu?

So says Domain, in news that will shock nobody: Liberal MP Gladys Liu secured access to the federal government for a company and Liberal Party donor endorsed by the Chinese Communist Party and later implicated in a major organised crime probe into $1 million in suspected drug money. Brighsun New Energy is the Australian subsidiary


Daily iron ore price update (Brazil hiccup)

Texture from Reuters: “As (China’s) winter production control is less severe than last year and steel demand remains solid due to government’s support policies, we expect the steel prices to rise further, underpinning further recovery in iron ore and coking coal prices,” said Helen Lau, metals and mining analyst at Argonaut Securities. Meh. This is


Bill Evans: RBA overconfident of rebound

Via Bill Evans at Westpac: As expected, the Reserve Bank Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 0.75%. The key themes around the policy outlook which have been consistently promoted in these RBA statements in recent months have been repeated today. Firstly, the Board “continues to monitor developments, including in the labour market”,