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Mortgage fraud game on? ASIC loses HEM case

Via the ABC: The Federal Court has dismissed ASIC’s responsible lending case against Westpac and ordered the regulator to pay the bank’s costs. ASIC had alleged that Westpac breached responsible lending laws on up to 262,000 home loan approvals made using an automated process that relied on the Household Expenditure Measure benchmark, rather than using

44

Anger erupts as cracking apartment owners left destitute and bankrupt

Yesterday was the first day of the inquiry into NSW building standards, which was set up last month after major faults appeared in apartment buildings such as Mascot Towers and Opal Tower. The inquiry heard tails of woe from owners of apartments in the Mascot Tower, who have been left destitute and facing potential bankruptcy.

31

Greens back Chinese international student thug takeover

Yes, it has happened, via Domain: Clive Hamilton has slammed left-wing activists on Australian university campuses as “useful idiots” of the Chinese Communist Party, after a Greens student group belatedly reversed its opposition to a protest against the Confucius Institute’s impact on academic freedom. The outspoken author has also called on intelligence authorities to investigate

14

The slow painful death of the Australian Treasury

When I and other graduates arrived at the Australian Treasury in 2003, we were inducted by Secretary Ken Henry and his deputy secretaries who drilled into us the Treasury’s rich history of giving “frank and fearless” advice to the federal government, based upon rigour and evidence. We were told to examine issues rationally with a

16

It’s not a negative rate mortgage, it’s an Orwellian mortgage

Some brouhaha around this in Denmark: Jyske Realkredit is ready with a fixed-rate mortgage with a nominal interest rate of minus 0.5%. Yes, you read right. You can now get a fixed-rate mortgage with a maturity of up to 10 years, where the nominal interest rate is negative. However, you are not exactly going to make money

29

Subway joins the wage thieves

Via Domain: Subway has said it could terminate franchisees that do not pay staff properly after it emerged the US sandwich giant is under investigation by the Fair Work Ombudsman over underpayment of local employees. The troubled franchise is under pressure after an investigation by The Age and Sydney Morning Herald revealed it is closing

23

RBA fail: Migrant visa boom crushing Australian wages

In testimony on Friday to the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics, Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) governor, Phil Lowe, blamed increasing labour supply from females and older Australians for holding down Australian wages: What’s happened is that increased demand for labour has been met with more labour supply, especially by women and older

26

More calls to reform car taxes

The Morrison Government is being urged to remove Australia’s 33% luxury car tax following the demise of the local car assembly industry. From The AFR: Treasury is consulting on plans to extend a refund scheme for primary producers and tourism business operators, saving owners up to $10,000 on luxury car purchases… Farming advocates welcomed the

46

Why owners should sell “bubonic plague” apartments

New research from Propertyology has advised owners of recently built apartments to consider cutting their losses and selling now before : The analysis from respected property market research firm Propertyology said unit owners who were patiently waiting for prices to rebound were playing Russian Roulette with their financial futures amid a looming apartment crisis. Propertyology

47

RBNZ shreds Australian dollar to 10 year low with 50bps cut

From the RBNZ: The Official Cash Rate (OCR) is reduced to 1.0 percent. The Monetary Policy Committee agreed that a lower OCR is necessary to continue to meet its employment and inflation objectives. Employment is around its maximum sustainable level, while inflation remains within our target range but below the 2 percent mid-point. Recent data

34

Perth and Darwin property losses near 40%

CoreLogic’s Cameron Kusher released interesting data tracking the real inflation-adjusted decline in Australian dwelling values across the major markets to June 2019. As shown in the below charts, both Darwin and Perth have experienced vicious housing downturns of 39.9% (Darwin) and 36.3% (Perth), with Darwin’s running for nine years and Perth’s 12.5 years: It is

34

Angry China threatens Hong Kong and Australia

And anyone else within earshot. Via the New Daily: China has threatened unspecified “countermeasures” if the United States goes ahead with plans to deploy ground-based missiles in the Asia-Pacific region, with a specific warning for Australia. “China will not stand idly by and will be forced to take countermeasures should the US deploy intermediate-range ground-based missiles in

42

Earth to Recessionberg. Your economy is falling apart

Earth to Recessionberg. Earth to Recessionberg. Earth to Recessionberg. Your economy is falling apart. Come in Recessionberg! Nobody is listening. Perhaps nobody is home. Recessionberg is too busy today reassuring “quiet Australians”: Josh Frydenberg has urged Australians not to overreact to the turmoil on world markets as he moved to smooth concerns the US-China trade

8

Mathias Cormann cooks the NBN books

The Morrison Government is facing increasing pressure to write-down the value of the National Broadband Network (NBN) in order to lower wholesale costs for both downstream telecommunications retailers and Australian consumers. Only last week, the head of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), Rod Sims, stated that the government “must ignore those who worry

37

John Howard slams kow towing miners

Good stuff from the old battleaxe at. of all places, the Diggers and Dealers event: “China remains an authoritarian country. But the economic importance of China to Australia is overwhelming, and we should never lose sight of that. Successive governments in Australia, from both sides of politics, have worked very effectively to keep a good

47

Consumer panic as new car sales plunge to 7-year lows

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) has released its new car sales figures for July, which revealed a 2.8% year-on-year decline in overall car sales, with annual sales hitting the lowest level since November 2012: According to the media release: Sales of new vehicles in Australia fell for the 16th successive month in July,

29

Mascot Towers owners slugged $76k each to fix cracking

Fixing cracks in the Mascot Towers apartment building’s primary support structure will cost $10 million – half the initial building cost of $22 million – according to information to be presented at an owners meeting on 22 August. Owners of apartments in the evacuated building in Sydney have been told that they will have to

23

Sydney’s wealthy elite are migrant NIMBYs

As we already know, Sydney is Australia’s primary entrant point for migrants: And Western Sydney is the prime dumping ground for these migrants: With Western Sydney also projected to receive the lion’s share future immigration-driven population growth – i.e. an additional 1.2 million people over the next 20 years, according to the Greater Sydney Commission:

25

Lawyers lick lips as developer “washout” arrives

As we know, developer Ralan has collapsed, via The Australian: The collapse of the prolific east coast suburban apartment developer Ralan Group, headed by British-born William O’Dwyer, owing creditors at least half a billion dollars has highlighted the fragile state of the high-rise property market. …The private Ralan Group specialised in high rise developments with a

30

Cold War 2.0 detonates

Where to begin! At home makes sense, with AUSMIN Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations, which have delivered an epochal commitment to ANZUS, via The Australian: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the US-Australia alliance is ­entering a new era in the face of a rising China, declaring “the time is right” for both nations to step up

41

Welcome to your mass immigration kleptocracy

For years, MB has pointed out to an obtuse media that wage theft, crushloading, dodgy construction, falling living standards and corruption are integral parts of the mass immigration economic model. It is pointless whining about it, regulating it, fixing it piecemeal and expecting our institutions will cope. All such efforts will fail. Why? Because these are

44

Chinese international students lured into prostitution

The exploitation of international students across the Australian economy has been well documented. For example, the 2016 Senate Committee report, entitled A National Disgrace: The Exploitation of Temporary Work Visa Holders, found international students “were consistently reported to suffer widespread exploitation in the Australian workforce”. The report also noted that “students are ‘generally young, low