Latest posts


Property parasite bullish on ponzi economy “gold rush”

By Leith van Onselen CEO of Stockland (and former Property Council President), Mark Steinert, is loving the Australian economy right now, with the company making out like bandits from the immigration-driven population crush occurring across Melbourne and Sydney. From The AFR: Steinert looks at Melbourne and sees a city experiencing the strongest population growth since


Baaaaanabygate triggers Coalition despair

Via the AFR: Liberal MPs despairing at the mounting crises plaguing the government are starting to question the political judgment of the Prime Minister’s office and whether the Coalition can win the next election. As the government limped through another parliamentary sitting day hamstrung by Barnaby Joyce’s dual citizenship debacle, MPs said the only positive


Trump isolated as neo-Nazi crisis escalates

From the NYT: President Trump’s main council of top corporate leaders disbanded on Wednesday following the president’s controversial remarks in which he equated white nationalist hate groups with the protesters opposing them. Soon after, the president announced on Twitter that he would end his executive councils, rather than put “pressure” on executives. The quick sequence


Salt of the Ponzi launches decentralisation pipe dream

By Leith van Onselen Bernard Salt – the self-proclaimed “unabashed supporter of a bigger Australia” – took to LinkedIn yesterday in response to Dick Smith’s call for Australia to slash Australia’s immigration intake, calling for Australia’s immigration intake to be shifted away from Sydney and Melbourne: Speaking to Seven News nationally for broadcast tonight. Dick


Chinese tourist arrivals hit another record in June

By Leith van Onselen The Australian Bureau of Statistics yesterday released its overseas short-term arrivals and departures figures for June, which continued to show a trend rise in the number of inbound tourists, with Chinese arrivals continuing to boom. The number of short-term visitor arrivals rose 0.3% in June in trend terms, whereas short-term resident


ConBank lumped with Russian laundry banks

By Nathan Lynch, Asia-Pacific bureau chief, financial crime and risk, Thomson Reuters Commonwealth Bank of Australia faces enquiries from a range of different regulatory agencies in various jurisdictions over its alleged anti-money laundering failures, sources said. The bank is already preparing a response to the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre’s litigation alleging more than


Links 17 August 2017

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Bank of America Warns of an ‘Ominous’ Sign for Stocks – Bloomberg Why Blackstone Is Betting $7 Billion on Natural Gas – WSJ Bitcoin Is Literally Soaring Into Space After Rocket-Like Surge – Bloomberg Bitcoin market cap is within touching distance of major stocks like Netflix – CNBC Political


Macro Afternoon

by Chris Becker Following last night’s tepid lead from overnight markets Asian traders are looking at each other and wondering if they should continue on with the bounce from Monday, given the seemingly reduced risk over the Korean peninsula. Stock markets were mixed with only the ASX200 putting on meaningful gains with currencies relatively stable


Melbourne wins bogus “most livable” award for 7th consecutive year

By Leith van Onselen Of all the idiotic ‘awards’ handed out, The Economist’s ‘Most Livable City’ must surely rank near the top. For the seventh consecutive year, The Economist has named Melbourne the most livable city in the world. From The Age: Melbourne’s seventh consecutive year at the top of The Economist’s liveability index was welcomed


Construction-led growth is ponzi growth

Cross-posted from The Conversation: Any downturn in the construction industry could trigger job losses to a range of sectors that support the building industry, such as planning, project management, real estate and property services. This threat reveals the risk of relying on building and construction to sustain the economy. Since before the global financial crisis,


JPM: Aussie dollar to keep falling

Via AFR: Currency experts have had to overcome their pride, and their persistently wayward Australian dollar forecasts, and instead develop a different model for charting the direction of the local currency, as it moves against the US dollar. Shifting commodity prices and a gap in interest rate spreads are complicating Aussie dollar forecasts, but JP Morgan


Bitcoin versus gold

Via Morgan Stanley: ‘…so you’re a commodity analyst, and you don’t track bitcoin? Should I be worried about that?’ – bitcoin enthusiast Latest fiat money: Bitcoin’s value has lifted about 5x since a period of relative stability pre-Nov-16, to over $4,000/bitcoin (Exhibit 1,2), on mainly rising geopolitical tensions. Curiously, we’re receiving investor queries on this


Franchise visa rorters bill hangs in the balance

By Leith van Onselen After extensive behind-the-scenes lobbying campaign by the Franchise Council of Australia, led by former Liberal Small Business Minister Bruce Billson, the Turnbull Government earlier this year delayed a vote on a bill to prevent worker exploitation. Now the Coalition is in negotiations in the Senate, and the bill reportedly hangs in the


“Alarming” NZ immigration might be even higher than reported

By Leith van Onselen Earlier this week, Statistics New Zealand released its population estimates for the June quarter of 2016, which recorded an unprecedented population increase of 100,400 (2.1%) in the year to June, driven by a record high 72,300 net migration: Today, Economics forecaster and consultancy Infometrics has produced new research suggesting that the


Leading index remains below trend

From Westpac: • The six month annualised growth rate in the WestpacMelbourne Institute Leading Index, which indicates the likely pace of economic activity relative to trend three to nine months into the future, rose from –0.54% in June to –0.10% in July. Despite the improvement in the growth rate it remains negative for a second