I don’t follow Twitter much because it doesn’t add much more than a Seinfeldian quip to any debate. So I missed this little exchange a few weeks ago when we started calling out Greg Jericho’s slump into anti-intellectualism: If we’re offending the Fake Left and Right then that’s good. One does not open a debate
Australian business media is the world’s dumbest and one of the most corrupt. It exists in a frozen duopolostic structure between Fairfax Media and News Corporation. These two focus one another rather than innovation or service delivery, poaching each other’s staff, copying businesses and generally overpaying for any assets that pop up to threaten the cosy relationship.
Business coverage in Australia is much more akin to a “boys club” of back-slapping private school alumni than it is any investigative or analytical force. It pretends to endorse private markets as a philosophy but in actuality largely exists to defend vested interests. Both halves of the duopoly are addicted to bank and real estate advertising, with Fairfax especially prepared to sell out its editorial in pursuit of higher house prices (and more ads). It’s real estate classifieds business, Domain, has slowly but surely turned its business news coverage from reporting and investigation to press-release recycling and property price cheer-leading.
MacroBusiness covers these foibles daily.
More from Jericho Sell-out today: While retiree aged households have lower incomes, they have a great deal more wealth, because you accumulate wealth over your lifetime: A big reason for that wealth is property and superannuation. The richest 20% of households hold an average of $1.2m in property – 2.5 times the level held by
From the Jericho sell-out today: Australia’s union movement is in a period of soul-searching. After three decades of labour market “reforms”, the workforce has fractured and wage inequality has deepened. Part-time and casual jobs have increased as a proportion of the economy, along with the number of people who say they want to work more
It’s always good when one looks at the simple, forensic truth about house prices, via BofAML: With population growth expected to keep underlying housing demand robust, we see underlying demand outpacing supply in Australia’s largest housing markets, New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, from 2020: Laws of supply and demand suggest that house price pressures
The AFR continues to rot from the head as Editor Michael Stutchbury today debases the legacy of Bob Hawke and Paul Keating: Under Bob Hawke and Paul Keating in the 1980s, Labor’s wage “Accord” with the unions deliberately cut real wages to restore the profit share of national income, stimulate business investment and promote job
Further journalism downside coming: Fairfax Media chief executive Greg Hywood will look for efficiencies in the publisher’s newspaper business after a further decline in print revenues, while outlining plans to shut down one-third of the company’s New Zealand print titles. The head of The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, and Australian Financial Review said he
From an editorialising Domainfax hack: For decades, American author and economic forecaster Harry Dent has made a living out of boom-bust financial prophecies. The author of books like The Great Depression Ahead and more recently, Zero Hour, self-proclaims that his skill is forecasting demographic trends, and predicting bubbles that crash. Like with most economic doomsayers, sometimes he’s right,
CoreLogic is out with its monthly price data recording “coast-to-coast” property price falls in January yet a survey of Flufferfax shows that Melbourne prices are skyrocketing, Kevin Rudd is spitting the dummy, some sheila is getting hosed off in Perth, there’s been a clerical error in a Brisvegas hospital: The one thing that there
Over the long weekend the increasingly desperate Domainfax wasted thousands upon thousands of words in a coordinated assault upon the Australian imagination and its views on property. It began with fake market blogger Patrick Commins on Friday: …a lengthening list of factors – from the threat of higher rates to tighter lending practices – appears to have signalled the turning
Via Gottiboff today: Domain chief executive Antony Catalano — “The Cat” — gave Fairfax Media a growth future in the new era of publishing and he probably saved it from being split into its component parts. The reason for this week’s separation of The Cat from Fairfax and its Domain spin-off goes much deeper than
Via Domainfax: Some big news in the media space today with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission launching an inquiry into digital platforms, including Facebook and Google, and the impact they are having of competition in the media and advertising markets. The highly anticipated inquiry, which was a condition of a deal the Turnbull government struck with
By Leith van Onselen This year, Crispin Hull has emerged as Fairfax’s rising star, demonstrating that unlike his colleagues Peter Martin, Jessica Irvine and Michael Pascoe, he actually understands the key issues afflicting Australia. Below are some key examples of Hull’s excellent work. Back in January, Hull argued that the main solution to making housing
An Amazon junket has produced the following at the AFR: I arrived in the US over the weekend. And as usual, the immigration officer asked what business brought me to the country. When I told him I was a journalist attending an Amazon Web Services conference in Las Vegas, our conversation immediately turned to its retail parent Amazon
More good Jess, bad Jess today: In reality, the high returns on equity enjoyed by Australian banks owe in large part to the higher leverage they hold. Australian banks are some of the most heavily exposed to household sector debt in the world. Aussies would rather sell their kids than miss a home loan repayment.
Oh dear: Australian publisher Allen & Unwin has ditched a book on Chinese Communist Party influence in Australian politics and academia, citing fear of legal action from the Chinese government or its proxies. The publisher’s chief executive, Robert Gorman, said last week that it would abandon publication of a completed manuscript by Clive Hamilton, a
The Domain spin-off was voted through this mooning by shareholders. What will happen to the failing media rump? nothing good, from Citi: Following the separation, the 60 per cent of Domain that Fairfax still owns should make up 72 per cent of Fairfax’s valuation (which Citi expects should be 74 cents a share). However Citi
Jacinda Ardern, legend: New Zealand prime-minister-elect Jacinda Ardern has described capitalism as a “blatant failure” in the country, nominating poverty and homelessness as her priorities when she takes office. Speaking in her first sit-down interview, on TV3’s The Nation, Ms Ardern said New Zealanders were not feeling the benefits of prosperity. Asked if capitalism had
By Leith van Onselen Why is it that only the conservative (“Right”) side of the media and politics seems capable of having a debate on Australia’s future population? Over the past year, we have seen conservative commentators like Judith Sloan, Terry McCrann, Adam Creighton, Andrew Bolt, and Mark Latham, Quadrant Magazine, as well as federal
It’s a truly ridiculous editorial tightrope that Jess Irvine has decided to walk. Recently she declared: Somewhere deep inside me, a switch has flicked. I feel different; changed somehow. I never thought it would happen to me. And, diary, I’m embarrassed by this new feeling. But I’m ready to confess. First, a little background. As
Today it’s the bubble: Home ownership among young Australians has fallen to the lowest level on record, as an explosive property boom squeezes out all but the wealthiest. Supercharged by record low interest rates, a lack of supply and a tax system that favors property investors, home prices have surged more than 140 percent in
From card-carrying bubble-boy and Pascoe ally, Bernard Keane, at Crikey In a piece in the Financial Review today with the sinister title “Australia’s luck is running out”, Das — a former banker turned author and commentator, manages to combine that staple of Fairfax, the property bubble/We’re All Rooned piece with a broader critique of the Australian economy. Das
For a long time we’ve mocked it but this week has really seen a new low in Domainfax journalism. First, admire the trivia: Note that this is the most dominant owner of media eyeballs in the country. Three pieces of fake news sum it up today. The first is by political commentator Mark Kenny: Pull the
Often wrong, never in doubt is Gotti: I have been reporting and commenting on large enterprises in the Australian private sector for more than half a century. I have never seen significant lumps of the private sector in such disarray as I am now seeing. And in the case of energy the private sector mess
Via Domainfax: A dramatic reshaping of Australia’s media industry is imminent after the Turnbull government’s plan to scrap “outdated and irrelevant” media ownership laws received endorsement from crucial Senate crossbenchers at the end of a day of furious backroom horse trading. In exchange for his support, Senate kingmaker Nick Xenophon secured a suite of concessions
The AFR hasn’t done too bad a job on energy. Ben Potter finally converted to energy transformation in recent years and Angela Macdonald-Smith has, at times, described the great gas gouge. But it sure ain’t coming from the top, via Michael Stutchbury’s note on the weekend: Coal is Turnbull’s new black. Wages the economic growth
Go Dick: Dick Smith is launching an advertising campaign against ABC TV news and current affairs, which he says has warped the debate he has tried to spur over Australian population growth. He claims both Labor and Liberal politicians have told him they agree that Australia needs to cut its immigration intake to avoid future