Leith van Onselen


Victoria records 275 new COVID-19 infections

Victoria has recorded another 275 COVID-19 infections, down from yesterday’s 363 cases: As shown above, the curve looks to have peaked. NSW also recorded 20 new infections, above yesterday’s 18 new cases. There are now 2,913 active cases of COVID-19 in Victoria, 96% of the nation’s total: Victoria has now recorded 5,942 total cases of


Huge Sydney rental vacancies “recipe for disaster for many landlords”

Sydney’s loss-making landlords face more pain, with the city’s rental vacancy rate soaring to a 20-year high of 4.5%, according to the REINSW: As shown above, the surge in Sydney’s vacancy rate has been driven by the inner-city, where the vacancy rate is 5.8%. REINSW CEO Tim McKibbin described the results as “staggering” with “no


Arrogant universities cry poor over international students

Union representatives have slammed universities’ whining over the loss of international students, citing mass casualisation of their workforce while they built-up massive financial reserves: Some of Australia’s most prestigious and cashed-up universities are being accused of hypocrisy, as data reveals almost 70 per cent of staff are employed insecurely while “thousands” have been laid off


Melbourne’s auction clearance rate bombs

CoreLogic’s preliminary auction clearance rate fell to 59.2% from 62.2% last weekend: The decline nationally was driven by Melbourne, where the preliminary clearance rate dived to 47.5% from 63.7% last weekend. According to CoreLogic: In Sydney, 512 homes were scheduled for auction this week, down from 566 over the previous week, although higher than one


Links 20 July 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: World facing ‘staggering jobs challenge’ – BBC The end of the Arab world’s oil age is nigh: Pain will be felt across the region – Economist Global debt hits record high of 331% of GDP in first quarter – Reuters The Fed Is Setting the Stage for a Major


More restrictions as VIC records 363 new COVID-19 infections

Victoria has recorded another 363 new cases of COVID-19: There are now 2,950 active cases of COVID-19 in Victoria, 97% of the nation’s total: Victoria has now recorded 5,696 total cases of COVID-19, with the curve remaining frightening: Given these explosive case numbers, the Victorian Government has mandated that masks / face coverings be worn


VIC records 217 new COVID-19 infections amid AMA calls for Stage 4 restrictions

Victoria has recorded another 217 new cases of COVID-19, almost half yesterday’s record number of 428: NSW reported 15 new COVID-19 infections. There are now 2,679 active cases in Victoria, 97% of the nation’s total: Victoria has now recorded 5,382 COVID-19 cases, with the curve remaining scary:   Meanwhile, the AMA has called for Stage


Weekend Reading 18-19 July 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Stocks fall as coronavirus cases jump in some states – Yahoo The world loves the US dollar. Trump and the pandemic could change that – CNN Oil prices rise as supply starts to fall – News Journal Goldman Sachs estimates S&P 500 will generate average annual returns of 6%,


Will Murdoch cut ties with Foxtel?

The past several years have been incredibly difficult for Foxtel and its majority owner NewsCorp. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the globe, Foxtel was bleeding subscribers. According to Roy Morgan Research, Foxtel lost almost 600,000 subscribers in the two years to February at the same time as its competitors experienced explosive growth: Foxtel’s


NZ Deputy PM: VIC quarantine “looseness” caused COVID-19 surge

With New Zealand going 75 days without community transmission of COVID-19, and having eradicated the virus, straight-talking Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters has blamed Victoria’s “looseness” in hotel quarantine for causing Australia’s virus surge: “It’s awfully frustrating… and I feel a great deal of regret that looseness allowed this thing to get out of control


Farm lobby demands migrant work visa slaves

One would have thought that the global COVID-19 pandemic, the effective closure of Australia’s international border, and mass unemployment would have dampened calls from business lobbies to import cheap migrant labour. Not so, with National Farmers Federation president, Fiona Simson, this week demanding “streamlined” regulations to make it easier to import migrant workers: “The cost


Victoria’s records 428 new COVID-19 infections

An unmitigated public health disaster is unfolding in Melbourne, with Victoria recording a whopping 428 new COVID-19 infections, by far the biggest daily increase, with a full 370 untraced sources: There were also three more COVID-19 deaths recorded in Victoria overnight, with dozens more people also requiring hospitalisation. NSW recorded only 8 new infections. There


Businesses swamped with job applications amid rising unemployment

Late last month, the conservative media ran reports claiming Aussies receiving ‘generous’ emergency income support were shunning jobs. It came after Prime Minister Scott Morrison referred to “anecdotal feedback” that some businesses were finding it difficult to find staff because of the boosted payments. These claims could not be further from the truth, with employers


Regional property markets to benefit from COVID decentralisation

Eliza Owen, Head of Research Australia at CoreLogic, has penned research arguing that Australia’s regional property markets could stand to benefit from COVID-19 as working from home becomes the new normal: An emerging narrative around regional dwelling markets is that they may see increased demand as a result of COVID-19. This is thought to be


Australia’s youth hardest hit by jobs collapse

Yesterday’s ABS labour force release for June was another unmitigated disaster for Australia’s youth – i.e. those aged 15 to 24 years old. The headline youth unemployment rate rose further to 16.4%, almost three times the rest of the labour market (5.8%): The impact has been partially hidden by a sharp 4.8% decline in the


CoreLogic weekly house price update: Heavy falls

In the week ended 16 July 2020, the CoreLogic 5-city daily dwelling price index, which covers the five major capital city markets, fell another 0.27%: It was the tenth consecutive weekly decline. The falls were driven by Melbourne and Sydney: So far this month, dwelling values have fallen by 0.40%, with Melbourne hammered: Quarterly dwelling


COVID-19 ravages Melbourne’s hospitals

Yesterday I published the below on-the-ground observations from Emergency Physician Stephen Parnis: Home after a rough, understaffed shift in #Emergency. More & more #COVID19, some needing ICU. The stress is showing in many colleagues, but I’m so proud of the way they just keep stepping up. Please, please lock yourselves down, because if this continues,


Links 17 July 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Cannabis has gone from a criminalized drug to a multibillion-dollar global boom in just a few years – Business Insider Coronavirus Economic Turmoil Makes Case for Alternative Data – Bloomberg What future for global oil demand? – Exploring World’s largest study shows carbon pricing reduces emissions – Phys.org World’s


Melbourne ICUs struggle amid COVID-19 onslaught

Some worrying on-the-ground observations from Emergency Physician Stephen Parnis: Home after a rough, understaffed shift in #Emergency. More & more #COVID19, some needing ICU. The stress is showing in many colleagues, but I’m so proud of the way they just keep stepping up. Please, please lock yourselves down, because if this continues, we’ll struggle. #auspol


Liberal electorates hit hardest by unemployment scourge

Data from the Department of Parliamentary Services shows that some traditional Liberal seats have recorded the strongest growth in the number of JobSeeker recipients during the pandemic. Some 5,688 people in the eastern Sydney seat of Wentworth received unemployment benefits in May, a 422% increase since the health crisis began. Likewise, the seat of Warringah


Has public transport had its day?

As we know, COVID-19 has hammered the nation’s CBDs. With so many of us now working from home and avoiding crowded spaces, our CBDs are resembling ghost towns of a bygone era. Our public transport networks, which are designed around transporting masses of people in and out of the CBD are also laying idle as


Inside Australia’s unemployment disaster

As summarised earlier, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today released its labour force report for June, which registered a 0.3% increase in the official unemployment rate to 7.4% despite a 210,800 rebound in jobs: Full-time jobs fell by 38,100, whereas part-time employment rose by 249,000: The participation rate rebounded 1.3% to 63.97%, which is


Aussie property sentiment collapses

The latest ANZ-PCA survey has been released, which remains deeply negative: Whereas house price expectations remain firmly negative across all jurisdictions, except South Australia: According to ANZ: The ANZ-Property Council Survey for the September quarter showed a modest improvement in sentiment across Australia’s property sectors, although it remains deep in negative territory as COVID-19 and


Stage 4 beckons as Victoria records 317 new COVID-19 infections

The nightmare has deepened with Victoria registering a record 317 new COVID-19 infections: NSW recorded 10 new cases over the past 24 hours. There are now 2,118 active cases of COVID-19 in Victoria, 96% of the nation’s total: The curve in Victoria remains frightening: All because the incompetent Andrews Government bungled hotel quarantine. Brace for


An ode to Jacinda Adern

It is fair to say that MB has had a love hate relationship with New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Adern. When she became New Zealand’s 40th Prime Minister on 19 October 2017, we were enamoured by her excellent and comprehensive election platform. Among other things, Adern promised to fix New Zealand’s chronic housing affordability problem