NAB Survey: Retail hits GFC levels

The June NAB Business Survey again makes pretty ordinary reading with Australia’s so called two-speed economy, other wise known to the sane as Dutch Disease, turning virulent. Here’s the commentary: Domestic sector struggling to gain momentum as confidence slumps. Forecasts for growth lowered and rate rises delayed – reflecting current slowdown and, in the medium

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The Macarthur Coal bid

MacArthur Coal (MCC) has received a take over bid from US energy company Peabody in conjunction with ArcelorMittal – the world’s largest steel maker.  The offer is for $15.50 per share, minus whatever dividend MCC pays this year. MCC has three operating coal mines which are all situated in central Queensland – Moorvale, Coppabella and


Western policy chaos

Look, I’m not a bear by nature. And frankly, I’m a bit tired with the grim macro outlook. But it is what it is and today it’s most definitely taken a turn for the worse. Contagion is now rampant in ten and two year bonds at the core of Europe. Here are the charts: Italy


Equities Spotlight: Monadelphous (MND)

In this week’s equities spotlight, we take a look at engineering and construction firm Monadelphous. The Business Monadelphous (MND) is an Australian engineering group providing construction, maintenance and industrial services to the resources, energy, infrastructure and airline sectors.  It also offers turnkey design and construction services. Monadelphous Group operates through four major divisions: Engineering Construction


July 12 links: Raging contagion

Raging contagion: Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Belgium, Greece Rocket: $US, gold Up: ore Down: CRB, metals, grains Smashed: energ, euro, Aussie The big short on Italy. FT, NYT, WSJ Europe needs a plan B. George Soros No shit US rail traffic soft in June. Calculated Risk Mind the US output gap. Economist’s view US unemployment projections. Calculated Risk US stimulus in trouble. Gavyn Davies Rosenberg: QE3 cometh. Zero


RMBS mortgage arrears rise 25%

Just in, arrears on Australian prime residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) rose by 25% in the March quarter and are approaching their historical high reached in January 2009. From The Adviser (via aushousingcrash): Loans underlying Australian prime residential mortgage-backed securities that are greater-than-30 days in arrears jumped to 1.81 per cent in March 2011, from 1.44


Banks sieze massive market share

An interesting piece of research from Deutsche this afternoon helps explain the large rise in refinancing apparent in this morning’s May housing finance data. According to Deutsche: Housing finance up 0.9%mom ex-refinancing, evidence of ‘churning’ between bank and non-bank lenders. Excluding re-financing, housing finance rose by 0.9%mom in May, following a 3.7%mom rise in April. The rise


Mama mia

I’m a long way from the action sitting here in Newcastle but markets were off a little earlier this morning on news stories that the chances of a Greek default had rocketed up the ratings again. It seems that like any rational human being, European politicians are rethinking their stance on default given the ratings


Trading Day: 11th July

The S&P/ASX 200 slumped on the open, digesting the very poor US unemployment numbers on Friday, and the carbon pricing announcement yesterday. The market is now 1.3% or 60 points lower just after midday. Other Asian markets have smaller losses, with the Nikkei 225 down 0.5% at 10089 points, and the Hang Seng up down


Can super save the stock market?

Brokers are starting to wake up to the fact that the mining boom is only going to benefit the miners. The rest of the economy is likely to struggle, not least because Australia’s government finances are strong, national debt is low. Why does this matter? Because it means the Australian dollar is likely to remain


Housing finance recovers a bit more

ABS Housing Finance key points above. I’ve graphed results by state below: All states showed some level of ongoing recovery from the early 2011 hammering but all, with perhaps the exception of Victoria, are still looking very anaemic with most states showing monthly housing finance commitment levels first seen a decade ago. When we dig


Renewable hotties

With the announcement of a Carbon Pricing policy by the Government recently, combined with the formation of ARENA, a $3.2 billion agency to consolidate renewable energy industry support and given that the purpose of MacroBusiness is to give you the bigger picture, here is a (non-exhaustive) list and short summaries of renewable energy companies that


Chinese inflation decoded

As we know, Chinese inflation further accelerated in June.  The headline Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 6.4% compared to a year ago, vs. 5.5% in May.  This is slightly above consensus estimate of 6.3%. Less well understood, however, is how significant food prices are in this equation. Looking at prices in different categories, food prices inflation


Something for everyone

I’m glad we finally have a carbon price. My guess is that the roll out of the tax will be less contentious than currently appears. The leader of the opposition may want a referendum on the issue but in my view, but once it’s in place, the tax will give way to famous Australian pragmatism


Blame the lenders

Exclusively from Michael Pettis’ newsletter: Over the past two years we have become pretty used to the spectacle of Chinese government officials warning the US about its responsibility to maintain the value of the huge amount of US treasury bonds the PBoC has accumulated. More recently we have been hearing complaints in Germany about the


July 11 links: Carbon mania

Howdy you lot, back from illness and can’t believe my eyes. The more things change the more they stay the same it seems… Restive Egypt. Bloomberg Republicans blink on debt deal. Washington Post Week ahead for Dow. Calculated Risk US double dip. Mark Thoma US temp hiring rolling over. PragCap US turning Japanese, QE3 must come.


Rethinking urban planning

This blog has dedicated significant effort questioning the axioms underpinning Australia’s urban planning system. This system has grown increasingly restrictive as urban growth boundaries (UGBs), minimum targets for ‘brownfield’ development (urban consolidation), up-front infrastructure charges, amongst other measures, have been implemented across jurisdictions since the late 1990s/early 2000s. These urban planning tools, affectionately known amongst


Carbon Price Announcement

OK, so I was surprised on the upside and the starting price is $23/t. The Greens have indeed exerted their influence through the negotiation and what has emerged is a surprisingly strong package, which when implemented will perhaps be the most comprehensive carbon scheme in the world. You can see the influence of the Garnaut


Weekend Musing: The People’s Budget

It’s the Saturday, which means its time for some CC and a weekend musing. Last weekend’s musing on the public expenditures of first-world governments produced a lot of interesting debate.  My premise was that current levels of spending on non-capital items – primarily welfare and healthcare – were increasing quicker than GDP.  Politics aside, the math


Are services economies sustainable?

Sam Burmingham, founder and editor of the WeMoney Newsletter, has written a thought provoking article on his blog questioning the sustainability of service-based economies. Sam’s article is provided below for your reading pleasure. As always, comments are welcome. A couple of week ago Ross Gittins wrote: If ever there was a time when it’s obviously stupid


The Economy and the Environment

I’ve wandered off the reservation again this morning and am strolling around Carbon E Coyote’s turf  but I hope he doesn’t mind too much because as we Australians await the Prime Minister’s “Carbon Tax” announcement tomorrow I thought it is worth a quick post and link that is related to this issue.  It is important to note  I


Disastrous jobs report humbles a blogger

Once upon a time, a man who goes by the name of Rotten Apple wrote a post titled “The Bull Case for the US Economy“. Well, many moons have passed since then, but, to paraphrase Emperor Hirohito’s famous remark, in the meantime the economic situation has developed not necessarily to this humble blogger’s advantage. From


Australian Dollar Weekly Wrap

Gee whiz if your not a short term trader the Aussie would be driving you nuts at the moment, range bound as it is but without the strength to challenge the important levels up at 1.1013. From my point of view it remains my feeling that we have to test up there again eventually. During


Weekend Reading: US jobs disaster

Hi folks. RA here doing duties on the weekend links. I hear whispers that H&H will be back on Monday, so there should be somewhat of a return to normality on MacroBusiness next week. BLS defies RA prediction with a disastrous US jobs report Bloomberg Markets don’t like the jobs report Bloomberg Calculated Risk doesn’t like


AFG’s LVR revisions

As my readers would know I try to follow AFG’s loan reports every month. They claim to be a good leading indicator for the ABS data that doesn’t appear until 6 weeks later. I have however had a long term issue with their LVR data because it made absolutely no sense.  I posted about this


Is Trichet jawboning for a full union?

In light of the ECB rate rise yesterday the Wall Street Journal has a great article on the current perceived contradictory position held by the European Central Bank. The European Central Bank is trying to rescue the euro and keep a lid on inflation. It will find it can do one of these, but not both.


Trading Day: 8th July

The S&P/ASX 200 opened higher and has built on these gains from very positive leads from US overnight, and now after midday is up 47 points or 1% to 4652 points. Other Asian markets have similar gains, with the Nikkei 225 up 1% at 10170 points, and the Hang Seng up 1.17% at 22,794 points.


Next week’s data – Housing finance to dominate

With the first week of the new financial year over, we stumble into a new round of announcements and data releases to digest, analyse and consider and move towards the next corporate earnings season. The big kahuna for next week will be the Labor Government/Green Party announcement on a carbon price policy on Sunday. Here’s


The bull case for the US economy

There are no shortage of reasons to worry about the state of the world economy today. An unsustainable bubble in China, the possibility of sovereign debt defaults in Europe, the chance that debt ceiling politics will derail the US economic recovery… And I could go on. Like many of the writers on MacroBusiness, I am


When to buy & sell housing

Fellow econblogger, Cameron Murray, has written another fascinating post on his Blog about the best time to buy and sell real estate. Cameron’s post is re-produced below for your reading pleasure. As always, comments are welcome. I came across the Commonwealth Bank – RP Data Home Buyers Index recently. It is designed to estimate the