Featured Article

38

Capital Economics: Aussie house prices to stall and fall

Via Domainfax: Sydney and Melbourne house prices appear to be around 25 per cent to 30 per cent overvalued and housing market risks are concentrated in those cities, Capital Economics’ team says. While taking a look at the possibility of whether housing is generally overvalued across the country, the economists noted that, away from Sydney and Melbourne, once a

50

Steve Keen: Soaring global debt risks another GFC

Cross-posted from The Conversation: This phrase may have religious roots, but there is no better way to describe the dominant sect in economics today than as wilfully blind. A decade after the 2007-08 crisis, most still repeat the mantra that it could not have been predicted. Nonsense. The data that showed what would cause the

119

Freelancer CEO destroys “delusional, stuffed, basket case, bubble, Third World economy like no other”

From yesterday’s AFR Innovation Summit comes Matt Barrie, CEO of Freelancer.com: Australia is doomed to become a third-world country unless its government starts “something like the Apollo program” to inspire its citizens into becoming a technology economy, Freelancer.com chief executive Matt Barrie told the AFR Innovation Summit 2017. “Australia is basically a property bubble floating

32

Mirabile dictu: The gas solution rides in

Via The Australian through gritted teeth: The use of high-cost gas for electricity generation has almost doubled in two years, producing a perfect storm for household bills of record gas prices and a growing reliance on it to fill the energy gaps as coal plants come off line. The Australian understands that modelling provided to

28

Wage suppression a time bomb for superannuation system

By Leith van Onselen The Australia Institute (TAI) has produced an interesting report warning that record low wages growth could significantly curtail Australian’s superannuation retirement savings, placing immense pressure on the Federal Budget. Below is the summary of the report along with some key charts: The record-slow pace of wage growth in Australia’s economy is

21

ABS: Sydney, Melbourne drove property prices up 1.9% in Q2

By Leith van Onselen The ABS has today released its property price index – incorporating both detached houses and units – which registered a 1.9% rise in home values nationally over the June quarter and a 10.2% gain over the year, exactly the same as the 10.2% annual growth initially reported in the year to

39

Get set for slowing houses and holes…

As some brave folks prepare for rate rises in Australia, the leading indicators are going entirely in the opposite direction. If one subscribes to the basic premise that Australia is a houses and holes economy, that derives income by selling dirt to China and leverages that in offshore markets for mortgages at home, then the

67

Our universities have become money grubbing ‘degree factories’

By Leith van Onselen Fairfax’s Ross Gittins delivered the goods again yesterday with a stinging take down of Australia’s “aimless, money-grubbing exploiting” universities: Of the many stuff-ups during the now-finished era of economic reform, one of the worst is the unending backdoor privatisation of Australia’s universities, which began under the Hawke-Keating government and continues in

21

China intensifies Bitcoin smash

Via WSJ: The crackdown on the bitcoin ecosystem represents Beijing’s possibly biggest effort so far to limit expansion of a system to rival the yuan. In a previous crackdown, in 2009, the central bank banned the use of tokens valued at billions of dollars created in China’s massive online-gaming networks for real-world purchases. A quasiregulatory

38

Salt of the Ponzi confusion grows

By Leith van Onselen I have frequently questioned the efficacy of Victoria’s (Melbourne’s) population (immigration) fueled economy because I believe that it is reducing the living standards of the incumbent population: This view is based on several observations. First, since the onset of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) in 2008, per capita gross state product

78

Apartment owners face huge flammable cladding repair bill

By Leith van Onselen Potentially tens-of-thousands apartment owners of apartments over three storeys high are facing costly remediation bills to replace flammable cladding because of a legal loophole that prevents neither dodgy builders nor insurers from being liable. From The AFR: The loophole in a 2003 agreement between state governments and the industry could be

44

How a house price “soft landing” turns into a crash

Flufferfax asked on the weekend what’s next for house prices: After a five-year bull run, in which house prices have surged 75 per cent in Sydney and 56 per cent in Melbourne, the party may be over for those who have bet big on the property boom. A combination of tougher APRA lending rules, rising unaffordability, new

44

An island made of coal

Coal is fast disappearing from the future of the global energy mix. As the EIA noted this week: The U.S. Energy Information Administration’s latest International Energy Outlook 2017 (IEO2017) projects that world energy consumption will grow by 28% between 2015 and 2040. Most of this growth is expected to come from countries that are not in the

20

Aussie jobs beat again

The ABS has released August Labour Force and the news is good as the Botox Boom delivers for while: TREND ESTIMATES (MONTHLY CHANGE)  Employment increased 27,100 to 12,249,500. Unemployment decreased 2,200 to 723,200. Unemployment rate remained steady at 5.6%. Participation rate increased by 0.1 pts to 65.2%. Monthly hours worked in all jobs increased 3.9

50

Pascometer red lines on liar loans

Weeoo, weeoo, weeoo. Lol: I have a “liar loan” – a mortgage based on less than absolutely factual information. I’ve pretty much always had liar loans. And I recently obtained a “liar credit card”. So what? Given readers’ (and therefore the media’s) love of stories that combine housing and doomsday scenarios, investment bank UBS received saturation

36

Do-nothing Malcolm’s sovereign risk shocker

Via The Australian: Bill Shorten asks the same question, hoping repetition will prove effective. “How much of power bills for Australia has gone up since the Liberals formed government in 2013?” Malcolm Turnbull admits power prices have gone up since the Coalition won power, much to the delight of opposition MPs. “They came down significantly

56

As Coalition hearts coal, solar prices crater

As the Coalition hearts coal today, the US National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) has released staggering new cost profiles for US utility scale solar: Solar PV capex cost cratered 29% year on year to a levelised cost of electricity of $0.43kWh. This is way faster than we have previously estimated was possible: Utility solar +

27

Australians want a national population policy

By Leith van Onselen The Productivity Commission’s recent Migration Intake into Australia report called on the Australian Government to develop a national population policy that focuses on maximising the living standards of the incumbent population and their future offspring: RECOMMENDATION 3.1 The Australian Government should: • develop and articulate a population policy to be published

14

RBA shoots down the bullhawks

Via Bloomie comes RBA board member Ian Harper with strong words of warning for the hawks: While it’s “terrific” full-time employment growth is strong and unemployment is slowly coming down, it’s a “concern” to see under-employment isn’t moving much and wages and household income growth are slow, because that indicates excess capacity, Harper said in