A bottom in the bullion bubble?

Apart from the nightly 2 second sound bites of how much spot gold has moved – in USD no less – most Australian’s do not watch what is happening in the gold market. Some maybe aware that the price of gold has soared in the recent decade, where the shiny metal has been in a

Latest posts


Stockland warns

Australia’s largest residential property developer, Stockland (SGP) “surprised” the market today with an update, announcing that: “..a recent deteriotation in the residential market has impacted its Residential sales, and in addition, prolonged wet weather has results in the deferral of a number of settlements into next financial year. “ SGP has reduced its earnings guidance for


Rental vacancies rise 8% YoY

By Leith van Onselen Sorry folks, almost missed SQM Research’s release last week of the capital city rental vacancies data for the month of February: As you can see from the above table, rental vacancies fell by -2,279 (-4.6%) in February, but remained  3,662 (+8.4%) higher than in February 2011. Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Hobart


China links

Courtesy of Sinocism:   China to Ban Public Purchases of ‘High-End’ Alcohol, Cigarettes – Bloomberg – yeah right//Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao pledged to ban the use of public funds to buy cigarettes and “high- end” alcohol, warning that corruption may endanger the ruling Communist Party’s survival. China Probes Banker’s Disappearance – WSJ.com – New allegations are emerging


RP Data daily house price indices

By Leith van Onselen Please find below the RP Data-Rismark daily house price indices for 27 March 2012: And below are the index values as at the end of February, which you can compare to the above daily movements to get the month-to-date home price movements in each capital and nationally: Finally, for a longer-term


Neutral on Premier

It is something of a measure of how much retail is on the nose that Macquarie only has a neutral rating on Premier Investments despite praising it for a “very good cost performance.” Macquarie points out that rental growth has been contained and that margin improvement has generally been well executed. But no business cost-cuts its way to success, and


UK first home buyers trapped

By Leith van Onselen The United Kingdom (UK) housing correction has now entered its fourth year. Depending on the indices used (explained here), UK home prices have declined by between -5% and -19% since peak (more in inflation-adjusted terms): However, it’s been a two-speed correction, with London home prices now rising, but much of the


The Dinkum Index measures some other economy

So, following on from the press release, find more details from the Fitch Dinkum Index below. First the headline index: Modest Increase in Arrears: Delinquencies in the Australian prime RMBS sector increased to 1.57% in Q411 (from 1.52% in Q311) driven by a rise in the 30-59 day bucket (up 4bp). Arrears have also increased in both


Fitch: mortgage arrears surge

Fresh from Fitch: Fitch Ratings-Sydney-26 March 2012: Fitch Ratings said that delinquencies in the Australian prime RMBS sector have unexpectedly increased to 1.57% in Q411 from 1.52% in Q311 despite a stable environment in terms of interest rates, economy and unemployment. The increase in Fitch’s Dinkum Index was mainly driven by a rise in the


Europe holds back the fire for now

Two weeks ago I wrote a post on Professor Sinn and the growing concern from the German central bank about TARGET2 liabilities. The pressure from the German camp is on-going and late last week it appears they had a win of sorts. The ECB has given the euro zone’s 17 national central banks the power to ban


Market Morning

There were three major data/news/comments that moved markets last night. First, a German based expectations index (the IFO) rose, which is a good leading indicator of the powerhouse German economy but was in stark contrast to the weak PMI data of last week. Next, Chancellor Merkel gave hope to a merging of the temporary EFSF


Australia dollar: base or ready for a fall?

The Aussie Dollar had a bad week then a great bounce last week. It managed to close above the important support zone in the 1.0370/1.04 region we identified. It sits this morning comfortably atop 1.05 and more than 2 cents above the lows from last week. Tough times for some traders no doubt and one


Thus spake Bernanke

Here is the speech Chairman Ben Bernanke of the US Federal Reserve (the Fed) gave at the National Association for Business Economics Annual Conference, last night that moved risk markets around the world. Why? The bottom line is rates will remain low until at least 2014, the US economy must grow – and fast –


Chart of the Day: PIIGS yield update

Time for an update on PIIGS (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain) cost of raising debt. Remember, the Eurozone member states must fund their government deficit spending by selling bonds in the private debt markets. The Euro is effectively a “gold” standard currency, unlike the fiat currencies of other developed countries. The 10 year bond


Is a big bond bear in the offing?

I wanted to write this piece today to have a look at bond markets globally and what they might, or might not, be trying to tell us about the future not just of the economy but of assets more broadly. As the recovery in the US economy appears to be gaining traction the bond market has


Bulk strength or bulk trouble?

It’s been a while since I visited iron ore prices. The miracle commodity has been performing well and is one indicator that has been defying a broad range of weakening indicators in China. The overnight price is near the top of its trading range since last year’s fall: That’s now a pretty decent recovering trend


Links 27th March: Bernanke rips

Markets: Rockets: gold Up: Stocks , energies, euro, Aussie Flat: CRB Down: USD, Treasuries Sovereign Yields: Greece 2 Year 5 Year 10 Year Portugal 2 Year 5 Year 10 Year Ireland 2 Year 5 Year 10 Year Spain 2 Year 5 Year 10 Year Italy 2 Year 5 Year 10 Year Belgium 2 Year 5 Year 10 Year France 2 Year 5 Year 10


Trading Day

Trading Day covers the relevant moves in the Asian stock, commodity, debt and currency markets including a review of the top 8 Australian stocks – the top 4 miners and banks, highlighting trading ideas and investment opportunities. Remember to read “Trading Week“, published each Saturday morning, to put these events and ideas in context. It


Europe looks to boost its firewalls

So just another week in Europe which means yet another summit. This time it is in Copenhagen where the main topic on the agenda will be the expansion, or lack thereof, of the European firewalls. If you’re having deja vu don’t worry, we have been here before, and as I explained then the combination of the


The Anzac’s greying wealth

By Leith van Onselen Over the weekend, Interest.co.nz’s Bernard Hickey posted a cracking article showing how the distribution of household wealth in New Zealand has shifted heavily towards the older generation courtesy of the housing boom: This week Roy Morgan published its annual State of the Nation survey showing a stunning rise in the wealth


The blue canary wails a sad song

Well this is no surprise – the Bank of Queensland (BOQ) is going to post a first half loss on a near tripling of its bad loan impairments. Is this the canary in the housing mine or just another notch in the pistol grip for the big four banking oligopoly? From The Cupboard: Bank of


Why is Minack still cautious on equities?

Gerard Minack of Morgan Stanley today asks a good question: Why So Cautious? That’s the question we get from investors when we reiterate our cautious strategic risk allocation. Some investors, the bullish ones, ask with incredulity. Others who share our caution are wondering whether it’s time to sell. In both cases — the two camps


RP data daily house price indices

By Leith van Onselen Love it or hate it, please find below the RP Data-Rismark daily house price indices for 26 March 2012: And below are the index values as at the end of February, which you can compare to the above daily movements to get the month-to-date home price movements in each capital and


China links

Courtesy of Sinocism:   China picks two female astronauts for space mission|Science-Tech|chinadaily.com.cn – China has selected two female astronauts among seven candidates for its next manned space mission that will be launched between June and August. Three Chinese astronauts, also known as taikonauts, will be chosen from the candidates to fly aboard the Shenzhou-9 spacecraft that will


Chart of the Day: Jobs are in the male

From Matt Cowgill comes this very interesting long term chart of male full time employment as proportion of population:     The data source is the ABS Labour Force stats (release 6202, table 2). From these figures the population numbers, Matt has calculated the male full time employment to population ratio. Notice how on every


Market Morning

Lets check out what happened in detail on Friday night before the open of the local markets – remember to read my weekly analysis of all major macro markets in Trading Week to put this daily noise in context. The  UK FTSE finished flat at 5854, the German DAX easing up 0.2% to 6995 points, just below the important


Data for the Week

Another relatively quiet week for local data, with the RBA carrying the load with its Financial Stability Review and release of monthly financial aggregate data (private sector credit: key to our houses and holes economy). The international flow is US-Japanese centric and in the latter half of the week, with the former printing quarterly GDP


Remedying Dutch disease

For those who don’t know, Max Corden is one Australia’s most eminent economists and a pioneer of thought around Dutch disease. Recently he released a Melbourne Institute paper called “Policy options for a three speed economy” (h/t 3d1k). In it he examines the contemporary case for policy measures aimed at correcting Australia’s current case of