Unconventional Economist


Australian CEOs bask in “culture of entitlement”

Recently, average CEO pay packets in the top 100 Australian companies surpassed $5 million, according to research from The Australia Institute: Now, the latest CEO pay report from the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI) shows that Australia’s top earning CEOs were paid 280-times the average Australian full-time salary of $85,000, which ACSI describes as “a


ABS employment in detail: more wages gloom

As summarised earlier, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today released its labour force report for August, which registered a 34,700 increase in total employment but an increase in the headline unemployment rate (from 5.2% to 5.3%) due to a 0.09% increase in labour force participation. However, the underemployment rate rose by 0.2% in seasonally


Business Council shill: ‘Big Australia’ will save economy

Adam Boyton, chief economist of the Business Council of Australia (BCA), has penned a spurious article claiming that mass immigration will prevent the Australian economy from experiencing the economic declines experienced in places like Japan and Europe: One difference between the US on the one hand and the eurozone and Japan on the other is


Final auction clearance rate stays strong

Last weekend, CoreLogic released its preliminary auction clearance rates, which revealed the following results: Today, CoreLogic has released its final auction results, which reported a 2.9% decline in the final national auction clearance rate to 72.8% – well above the same weekend last year (51.8%) and also above last week’s 72.3%: As you can see,


NZ GDP growth slowest since 2013

Statistics New Zealand has released national accounts figures for the June quarter of 2019, with Gross domestic product (GDP) rising by 0.5% over the quarter. Between the June quarter of 2018 and the latest June quarter GDP rose 2.1%, which was the slowest rate since December 2013. As shown below, services drove the GDP growth,


Study: Apartment living bad for children’s health

With Australia’s mass immigration policy forcing people to live in high density apartments rather than traditional houses, a new study by the University of Queensland has found that the loss of backyards is harming children’s health: The steadily shrinking backyard in Australia could be having an effect on how much exercise children get, new research


Vic Minister: No more dams, but 5m more people great!

Victoria water minister has ruled-out building any new dams, claiming that climate change and lack of rain fall will render them useless. From The Australian: Water Minister Lisa Neville says water in the state’s rivers will halve by 2065, citing this forecast in her refusal to build even one dam, even though over that period


Australia’s housing valuation bottoms-out

The ABS on Tuesday released its property price data for the June quarter, which valued Australia’s dwelling stock owned by households at $6.31 trillion, whereas the total housing stock was valued at $6.61 trillion. As shown below, the total value of Australia’s dwelling stock owned by households was 6.93 times employee incomes as at June,


Australia’s international student stranglehold ends

Over the past five years, Australia has experienced an unprecedented boom in international student enrolments, which hit an all-time high 712,000 as at June 2019: Moreover, Australia now has by far the highest concentration of international students in the developed world, with per capita enrolments roughly 2.5 times second-placed United Kingdom and three times third-placed


Links 19 September 2019

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Repo Market Chaos Signals Fed May Be Losing Control of Rates – Bloomberg A crack just emerged in the financial markets: The NY Fed spends $53 billion to rescue the overnight lending market – CNN An Army of Japanese Salarymen Is Rocking Global Currency Markets – Bloomberg Where you


Victorian pollies get massive pay rises as households flounder

The newly established Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal has handed down its first determination regarding the pay of Victorian MPs. Victorian MPs will now receive a base salary of $182,413, up 3.5% per cent. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews was given a $46,522 pay increase that sees him become the highest-paid state leader, while ministers and the


Population ponzi to swallow Sydney’s golf courses

With Sydney’s population projected to balloon to nearly 10 million people over the next 48 years, driven entirely by mass immigration: Rather than slowing the deluge by cutting immigration, the government wants to canibalise Sydney’s golf courses: Long parklands and shared areas on golf courses will help Sydneysiders make the most of our green space


CEDA contradicts itself again on mass immigration’s ‘benefits’

You have got to love the clowns at the business lobby, the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA), which continues to contradict itself on the ‘benefits’ arising from the “Big Australia” mass immigration policy. In 2015, CEDA released a report estimating that in the next 10 to 15 years, more than five million jobs


UDIA: Victorian housing shortage worsens as population soars

New dwelling approvals in Victoria in the year to June were at 59,719, according to the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA), which compares to 75,613 in the previous year. With the UDIA estimating that 78% of approvals become completed homes, this would mean completed dwellings fell from 58,978 to 46,581. UDIA Victoria CEO Danni


Perth’s rental market enters “strong recovery phase”

After spending years in the doldrums, whereby rental prices fell by 22% peak-to-trough: SQM Research claims that Perth rents are “in a strong recovery phase”: After an extended housing downturn, it appears that Perth’s rental market is in a strong recovery phase. While rental vacancy rates are elevated at 2.9% the trend has been down


LvO talks “bullshit” services jobs on Radio 2GB

This morning I was interviewed by Luke Grant from Radio 2GB to discuss yesterday’s article on Australia’s “bullshit” services jobs boom. Below is the exerpt: Leith Van Onselen, from Macrobusiness – the ‘Unconventional Economist’, about his article ‘Australia’s services “bogus” jobs boom He writes ‘the types of services jobs that have been created are more


17.5m more migrants will suck Australia’s water dry

The Australian has published a report warning that Australia’s water supply is running far behind the nation’s rapid immigration-driven population growth: It’s the worst drought in generations… But the story goes back much further: a progressive slowdown in construction of dams over the decades has led to a crisis that might have been avoided had


Governments open temporary visa floodgates

It never ceases to amaze how our dishonest governments pull the wool over voters’ eyes on immigration. In Australia, we’ve recently witnessed the Morrison Government wax lyrical about reducing immigration to “relieve congestion in the cities”, only to then see the number of temporary visas balloon to unprecedented levels, as illustrated below: Accordingly, net overseas


Sydney rental vacancies to hit 4% by year’s end

SQM Researchhas released its rental vacancy series for August, which revealed a small decrease in the national vacancy rate to 2.2% from 2.3% last month; although it was up 0.1% over the year: Over the year, decreases in vacancies were recorded in Brisbane (-0.3%), Perth (-0.8%), Adelaide (-0.2%), and Darwin (-0.6%), whereas increases were recorded


1,000 Chinese international students extorted

On Monday, Fairfax reported that around 1,000 Chinese international students studying in Australia have fallen victim to extortion by Chinese criminal syndicates: Chinese students are being forced to pretend they’ve been kidnapped, taking photos of themselves bound and gagged, in an alarming scam sweeping the country. Almost 1000 people have reported falling victim to scams


Links 18 September 2019

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma files for bankruptcy – After owners stash the loot away – BBC Dow set to lose more than 100 points on fears spiking oil will slow the global economy – CNBC Oil prices surge nearly 20% after attack on Saudi facilities – Reuters Oil prices


Marketisation of Australia’s public services has failed

This time last year, Ross Gittins penned an excellent article lamenting the neoliberal obsession with transferring the provision of public services to private providers, which focussed on aged care: A key part of the era of what we used to call “micro-economic reform” has been to take services formerly provided by governments – and sometimes


How the Coalition destroyed the NBN

MichaelWest.com.au has published interesting analysis explaining how changes implemented by the Coalition when it came to power in 2013 have wrecked the National Broadband Network (NBN): The real rot started with the “strategic review” of the NBNCo plans initiated after the 2013 election… The review predictably concluded that the latest corporate plan was too optimistic


Sydney’s stark East-West housing divide

I has been dubbed the “latte line” – the divide between poorer disadvantaged Sydney residents living in the West and their wealthy counterparts in living in the East. Christopher Brown, Chairman of the Western Sydney Leadership Dialogue (WSLD), explained the “latte line” recently: “As much as we are strong advocates of western Sydney, we need


Labor’s lackey peddles superannuation lies

Labor’s policy thinktank, the McKell Institute, has released a spurious ‘research’ report claiming that there is no evidence that previous compulsory superannuation increases eroded workers’ pay rises: Key points There is no clear empirical evidence that increasing the superannuation guarantee directly lowers wages. Our analysis finds no evidence to suggest that increases in the Superannuation


ABS: Property prices fell 0.7% in Q2

The ABS has released its property price index – incorporating both detached houses and units – which registered another 0.7% decline in home values nationally over the June quarter and a 7.4% decline over the year: Sydney (-0.5%), Melbourne (-0.8%), Brisbane (-0.7%), Perth (-1.4%), Adelaide (-0.6%), and Darwin (-1.8%) all recorded quarterly declines in values,


Hypocrite feds blame states for water crisis

Water Minister, David Littleproud, has hypocritically attacked Australia’s states for failing to build enough dams to provide for Australia’s ballooning population: The federal government has sounded a warning about falling water security, saying the states have failed to match water storage with population growth over the past two decades. At the current rates, water storage


Ralan collapse torches Chinese investor millions

As we know, developer Ralan has collapsed owing creditors at least half a billion dollars. Included among them are hundreds of buyers who bought apartments off-the-plan who are facing deposit losses of up to $70,000 or more. Many of these buyers were Chinese, who were targeted in an elaborate ponzi scheme: “It’s a quasi Ponzi