Grattan Institute parses income tax cut debate

The Grattan Institute has done a good job summarising the debate over income tax cuts: Many of the core arguments appear contradictory: most of the tax cuts benefit high-income earners, yet some people argue that high-income earners will end up paying a higher share of tax. Some argue the tax cuts are needed to support the economic recovery, while others

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APS becomes key player in ‘gig’ economy

Last month, the ABC reported that the federal government’s use of contractors, consultants and labour-hire firms has exploded under the Coalition: …an ABC analysis of about 120,000 federal government contracts — for services such as consulting, staffing and recruitment — suggests the Commonwealth’s market for “private” labour has doubled in the past five years, and


Property lobby demands more budget pork

Not satisfied with the Morrison Government’s gutting of responsible lending laws, the RBA’s monetisation of the mortgage market, or the expansion of the First Home Buyer Deposit Scheme, Australia’s property lobby is calling for more budget pork: The expansion of the first home buyers’ scheme by 10,000 places has been attacked by the real estate


GetUp turns useful idiot

I used to like the way GetUp stuck to the man. But now it works for him: Stand against Morrison’s deals with the party promoting racism Pauline Hanson’s One Nation has a long history of overt racism, spreading hate and division between communities with no regard for the damage caused. But the Morrison Government doesn’t


Coalition to launch ultimate ‘ProfitKeeper’ wage subsidy scheme

Last month we reported how the Morrison Government’s JobKeeper subsidy has been an absolute boon for Australian business owners, juicing company dividends and profits. This was reflected in the latest national accounts for the June quarter, which showed that employee wages & salaries fell by 3.3% over the quarter while company profits soared by 13.7%:


ASX bath of blood parts for gold

The Australian dollar is firm this morning: Bonds are selling but nothing like the US as we approach RBA easing: Stocks have gone from a dire technical rollover to something more non-descript: Big Iron has bounced a little. I would buy this dip but I’m unsure if it’s over. We should have corrected deeper but,


Manchurian Dan defends Chinese genocide trains

Manchurian Dan is scum, no doubt about it. At ABC: Premier Daniel Andrews says he’s been assured that forced labour is not being used to build Victoria’s new trains, despite the train manufacturers’ links to Chinese Uyghur forced labour programs. Chinese train manufacturer CRRC is part of the Evolution Rail consortium, which was awarded the


Australia’s trade surplus dives

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released trade data for the month of August, which registered a sharp fall in Australia’s trade surplus to $2,643 million amid falling exports and rising imports: Key points as follows: The seasonally adjusted balance on goods and services surplus decreased $2,009m to $2,643m in August. Exports of goods and


Psycho Creighton swings chainsaw at thousands of healthy Aussies

From Psycho Creighton today: Sweden’s impressive legacy — ABBA, dynamite, Ikea, for instance — has expanded significantly in 2020, having provided the world with an example of a sane response to what’s turned out a relatively mild pandemic. The Scandinavian nation deserves enduring credit from reasonable people everywhere for resisting the destructive authoritarian mindset that


ANZ job ads rebound to crushed

Via ANZ: The recovery in #ANZ Job Ads picked up the pace in September, rising 7.8% m/m. The week-to-week gains throughout the month were positive news given the ongoing restrictions in Victoria. But Job Ads were still down 21% on their February level. #ausecon @cfbirch pic.twitter.com/amOBa1PcBF — ANZ_Research (@ANZ_Research) October 6, 2020 A welcome recovery.


Omnibus bill to enshrine Melbourne police state

The Herald-Sun’s state political reporter, Shannon Deery, has done a good job analysing the proposed Victorian Government Omnibus Bill, which would see non-police authorised officers permitted to arrest and detain Victorians for unlimited periods of time: Victorians have reason to be wary of the state government’s controversial COVID-19 omnibus bill. …given the pandemic has lasted


Australian COVID-19 infections jump

Australia’s COVID-19 infections jumped overnight, with 26 new cases recorded versus 11 yesterday: Victoria recorded 15 new cases, the highest daily count since 27 September. Nevertheless, Melbourne’s 14-day average fell to 10.6, still well above the magical 5 required to ease draconian restrictions on 19 October: NSW recorded 11 new COVID-19 infections. However, these were


How Biden suddenly became bullish for stocks

An important piece by ZeroHedge: The reason for the shift was simple: with poll after (Democrat oversampling) poll revealing a growing Biden lead, Wall Street analysts were given a simple task: prevent a disorderly selloff ahead of or during the elections. This culminated when none other than Goldman, which just days earlier had hiked its


Roy Morgan unemployment 12.9% in September

Roy Morgan has released its unemployment estimate for September, which reports that Australia’s unemployment rate fell by 0.9% in September to 12.9%. However, underemployment rose by 0.4% to 9.4%: Unemployment was down 3.9% from its late March peak (16.8%), whereas underemployment was 1.2% lower from its late March peak (10.6%). However, the fall in unemployment


White or orange, gasping Trump goes home

He didn’t look great yesterday but he’s going home regardless: Looks like he may have brushed on some extra orange foundation before leaving (missed a bit around the edges): And can he breath? Trump looks like he is gasping for air pic.twitter.com/4k2v4Jxlir — Brennan Murphy (@brenonade) October 5, 2020 Not a hoax. Who released this


NAB business survey is a disaster for wages

The October NAB business survey is out and remains fugly. Overall, the survey saw a modest improvement in September. Conditions are around the levels seen in early 2020 but remain well below average. The improvement in conditions was driven by a rise in all three subcomponents – trading and profitability are in positive territory, likely


Geoff Raby is an agent of foreign influence

This is a dangerous moment for Australia as the CCP apologists rally at the AFR: Madame Fu Ying, China’s former ambassador to Australia and an influential figure in Beijing, also said China had a huge demand for Australia’s resources, that Australian wine remained popular with Chinese consumers and it was in both countries’ interests to


Macro Morning

Risk is back with the double whammy catalysts of a much better than expected services PMI in the US, coupled with higher hopes of a US stimulus package (although it remains to be seen if anyone isn’t in quarantine due to the TrumpVirus) which saw Wall Street surge nearly 2% and the USD hit by


How much more debt can Aussie households eat?

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) yesterday released its household debt data for the June quarter, which revealed that the ratio of household debt-t0-disposable income retraced to 185.0%, whereas mortgage-debt-to-disposable income retraced slightly to 141.2%: As you can see, both are a fraction below record highs. Separate data from the Bank for International Settlements (above)


Links 6 October 2020

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Trump’s Covid-19 diagnosis unsettled investors who were already on edge ahead of the November election – Daily NY In September, OPEC recorded an increase in oil production of 160,000 barrels per day – Business Devilhunter Pope: Market capitalism has failed in pandemic, needs reform – AP News Airbnb aims


Macro Afternoon

It’s been a solid start for risk assets here in Asia with Wall Street futures goosed by a Trump drive-by, thus lifting all other boats with big turnaround on stock markets. Meanwhile, the USD is gaining ground against most of the undollars, with gold retreating back below the $1900USD per ounce level: The Hang Seng


Morgan Stanley: A normal market cycle

Via Morgan Stanley: This Normal Cycle Of all the adjectives to describe 2020, ‘normal’ seems pretty far down the list. The year has witnessed a global pandemic and the worst quarter for global growth on record. Those emergencies produced the highest levels of government and central bank support ever seen. And beyond these obvious extremes


Mirabile dictu: International student applications crater 85%

Via the ABC: International student visa applications from outside Australia have dropped off a cliff, raising serious concerns of an increasing budget black hole for Australian higher education. Just 72,397 student visa applications have been received from prospective overseas students from January to July, 40 per cent of the total for the same period last