Unconventional Economist


Brisbane property the winner from Sydney’s lockdown

I have been bullish on Brisbane property for some time. The main reason is that Brisbane dwelling values are exceptional value in a relative sense when compared to its larger East-Coast counterparts, Sydney and Melbourne, as illustrated clearly below: The other reason is that net internal migration into Brisbane has remained robust throughout the pandemic: After


UK COVID cases continue to crash after reopening

Just over a week ago, as UK COVID cases soared to 50,000 a day, an open letter in The Lancet medical journal from more than 1000 doctors labelled Britain’s ‘Freedom Day’ opening up a “dangerous and unethical experiment”. As residents inundated nightclubs, pubs, bars and music festivals, experts warned that COVID cases could soar to


Aussie CPI surges as expected

The ABS has released Q2 CPI data, which shows that inflation rose by 0.8% over the quarter and by 3.8% over the year – basically in line with analyst’s expectations of a 0.7% quarterly increase and a 3.8% rise year-on-year. The large annual increase in CPI was driven by the ‘base effect’, since CPI fell


NSW records another 177 COVID cases

NSW Health has recorded another 177 locally acquired COVID cases over the past 24 hours: NSW recorded 177 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night. pic.twitter.com/UPgvzflhFm — NSW Health (@NSWHealth) July 28, 2021 Of these locally acquired cases, 74 are linked to a known case or cluster –


Albo cashes investment property as negative gearing reform scrapped

This may seem like a cheap shot. But optics is everything in politics. Only a day after Labor dumped the negative gearing and capital gains tax reforms taken to the past two elections, leader Anthony Albanese sold his Marrickville investment house for $2.35 million, banking a $1.2 million gross profit: From the article: [Albanese] and


Ireland shows how to successfully wean off property

I am currently pulling property-related data for an upcoming subscriber special report on the property markets of English-speaking nations. Yesterday I uncovered a treasure trove of data on Ireland, which has managed to successfully deleverage from one of the world’s biggest property bubbles leading into the 2008 Global Financial Crisis (GFC). The below charts tell


Links 28 July 2021

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Universal Basic Income Now or Never – Martinhies Boeck.com A Key Gauge of Future Inflation Is Easing – WSJ Why are used cars insanely expensive right now? – The Hustle Stock futures decline amid renewed virus, growth concerns – Yahoo Competition from online platforms and the impoverishment of newspapers


HIA dances on negative gearing’s grave

The Housing Industry Association (HIA) has issued a media release cheering Labor’s decision to axe the negative gearing reforms taken to the prior two federal elections, claiming it will boost dwelling supply and affordability: “[The] announcement by the Australian Labor Party to drop plans to increase taxes on housing through changes to negative gearing and


CoreLogic: Busiest auction market since 2017

CoreLogic has released its Quarterly Auction Market Review, which reveals that Australian auction volumes were the busiest since 2017 over the June quarter of 2021; although this drove the auction clearance rate down from the March quarter’s record high: There were 31,605 homes taken to auction across the combined capital cities over the three months


Is Sweden vindicated on COVID?

One year ago Sweden was lambasted far and wide for carelessly failing to implement COVID restrictions and ‘letting the virus rip’. Sweden’s Nordic peers each implemented lockdowns, resulting in much lower infection numbers: And lower deaths: But at the cost of reduced freedoms and liberty. One year on and Sweden is enjoying the near lowest


What does the “Labor” Party stand for? Absolutely nuthin’

Labor announced yesterday that it will not make changes to the stage three income tax cuts if it wins the upcoming federal election. It also abandoned the negative gearing and capital gains tax reforms taken to the past two federal elections. Shadow cabinet formally signed-off on these policy positions yesterday. Earlier this year, Labor also


NAB ramps-up property price forecasts

NAB has released its residential property survey for Q2, with its Residential Property Index reaching a new survey high of +71 points in the second quarter: The rebound in NAB’s index is universal, although WA, SA and TAS have begun to turn down: NAB has also ramped-up its dwelling growth forecasts for 2021 from 14.1%


Links 27 July 2021

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Stuck in the Smoke as Billionaires Blast Off: Climate inaction was never really about denial. Rich countries just thought poorer countries would bear the brunt of the crisis. – The Intercept The crypto market’s volatility cuts both ways giving both bulls and bears an opportunity to make a killing,


Australian policy reform ‘gridlocked’ by soft corruption

The Grattan Institute has released a new report entitled “Gridlock: Removing barriers to policy reform”, which argues that Australia’s prosperity is at risk from a decade-plus of decay across our political institutions. Below is the Overview, combined with some key graphics: Australia’s governance has deteriorated over recent decades. The formal institutions and the informal norms


Coalition under extreme pressure to reinstate JobKeeper

The NSW government will formally request the federal government reinstate the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme, amid expectations that the COVID-19 lockdown of Greater Sydney will be extended for at least another month. The state government is also believed to have sought financial modelling on a number of scenarios, including extending the lockdown until 17 September:


NSW records another 145 COVID cases

NSW Health has just reported another 145 locally acquired COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours: NSW recorded 145 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night. pic.twitter.com/TUUIDvd6SP — NSW Health (@NSWHealth) July 26, 2021 Of these locally acquired cases, 66 are linked to a known case or cluster,


UK COVID infections plummet after reopening

In the six days following ‘Freedom Day’, which saw all remaining COVID restrictions lifted across the UK, new case numbers have fallen dramatically: Only 29,173 new cases were recorded on Sunday, down significantly from the 48,161 registered one week earlier on 18 July. New case numbers also fell for the fifth consecutive day for the


Coalition launches another fake housing affordability inquiry

Here we go again. A new federal inquiry into ‘housing supply problems’ will be launched by the Morrison Government to examine the contribution of property taxes and restrictive planning and zoning regulations [my emphasis] Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has approved a parliamentary committee inquiry into housing supply to be led by Liberal MP Jason Falinski, chairman


Victoria to reopen after COVID cases successfully quarantined

Victoria’s Department of Health has recorded another 11 locally acquired COVID cases over the past 24 hours; however all were already in isolation throughout their infection period: Reported yesterday: 11 new local cases and 1 new case acquired overseas (currently in HQ). – 13,953 vaccine doses were administered – 25,404 test results were received More


Auction market solid in face of lockdowns

With both Sydney and Melbourne still in hard lockdown, the nation’s auction market continues to hold up well. CoreLogic record a preliminary national clearance rate of 74.8%, down only slightly from the prior weekend’s 76.3%. Sydney’s preliminary clearance rate softened to 74.8% from the prior weekend’s 77.1, whereas Melbourne’s also softened to 71.9% from 76.1%.