Latest posts


Collapsing balconies add to unit defect crisis

Via New Daily: The company that built Sydney’s Opal Tower is embroiled in another safety scare at a different city apartment block. Residents of Otto Rosebery have been warned against leaning on their balconies or allowing more than three people to stand on them, after an investigation found the balustrades were of “inadequate strength”. Parents


NSW Government spearheads new privatisation push

NSW Treasurer, Dominic Perrottet, is leading renewed calls for the federal government to reinstate the Abbott Government’s “asset recycling” program to provide states with financial incentives to reinvest the proceeds of asset sales into new infrastructure projects: On Thursday, the state Treasurers will meet among themselves and Mr Perrottet said he would seek support for


China’s golden week property shocker

Via SCMP: Property sales in China’s major cities saw one of their worst “golden week” holidays in years, as buyers held back amid a slowing economy and tight restrictions on mortgage loans. Sales of new homes in Beijing dropped to their lowest level since 2014 during the week following the National Day holiday, according to


Australia’s mortgage market goes BOOM!

Today’s housing finance data for August from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) recorded another strong rebound in mortgage commitments: As shown above, total finance commitments (excluding refinancings) rose by 2.9% in August, with owner-occupied commitments rising 1.9% and investor commitments rising 5.7%. However over the year, total finance commitments (excluding refinancings) fell by 5.0%,


Final auction clearance rate slides into the 60s

Last weekend, CoreLogic released its preliminary auction clearance rates, which revealed the following results: Today, CoreLogic has released its final auction results, which reported a 3.7% decline in the final national auction clearance rate to 67.6% – well above the same weekend last year (49.5%) but below last week’s 71.0%: As you can see, Sydney’s


MB Fund Podcast: Is Australia’s Jobs Miracle on Borrowed Time? LIVE TODAY

In today’s LIVE webinar (12:30 pm AEST, Thursday 10th October), hear from MB Fund’s Head of Investment Damien Klassen, Chief Economist Leith van Onselen, and Tim Fuller as they cover “Is Australia’s Jobs Miracle on Borrowed Time?” Over the past 2 years the Australian economy has experienced an unprecedented jobs boom of more than 300


Banker kings move to control RBA and Treasury

Via the AFR: Shayne Elliott, the chief executive of one of the country’s biggest banks, has called on federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg to convene a summit to discuss the broader economic implications of zero per cent interest rates and quantitative easing. Mr Elliott, who is the CEO of ANZ Banking Group and chairman of the


Fake Labor Party waves through wage-crushing Indonesian FTA

The Joint Standing Committee on Trade (JSCOT) has released its report rubber stamping the Hong Kong and Indonesia Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). The Indonesian FTA, in particular, will permit several thousand more Indonesians working rights, thus leading to more temporary migrant rorting, more low cost labour for business, and further undermining Australian wages and working


Australian dollar, markets sink as trade deal sours

So says SCMP: Deputy-level trade talks between the US and China aimed at laying the groundwork for high-level negotiations later this week failed to yield any progress on critical issues, according to two sources with knowledge of the meetings. During the discussions on Monday and Tuesday in Washington, the Chinese refused to talk about forced


Australia facing climate change “mass migrant invasion”

As we already know, Australia massively increased its migrant intake in the early-2000s, and this has driven a three-fold increase in Australia’s net overseas migration (NOM) compared to the historical average: Accordingly, the Australian population has ballooned by around 6.4 million people (34%) so far this century. The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) median projections


China’s capital war nuclear option

Via FTAlphaville: Some news Tuesday, via Bloomberg: The Trump administration is moving ahead with discussions around possible restrictions on portfolio flows into China, with a particular focus on investments made by US government retirement funds, people familiar with the internal deliberations said. China, so far, has pursued a policy of fighting fire-with-fire when it comes to


How to crash your energy bill 80%

Cross-posted from One Step off the Grid: The calendar says winter is over. Warmer days lie ahead. But this past winter was one when Australians in all-electric homes could be comfortable and count the dollars saved while burning no fossil gas. Home-economic studies show Australians can save money with all-electric homes by tapping in to renewable


Daily iron ore price update (unexpected)

Texture from Reuters: Steel inventories in China stood at 11.4 million tonnes as of Oct.7, up 594,100 tonnes compared with the week ended Sep. 26 but still the second lowest since late June, according to data from consultancy Mysteel. “Output curbs have eased after the National Day holiday, which piled pressures to (the) supply side,”


Australian dollar sags despite doving Fed

DXY was firm last night despite a rising EUR and CNY: The Australian dollar was weak versus DMs: And EMs: Gold rose: Oil hung on: Copper too: Big miners struggled: EM stocks did better: EM junk rolled: All bonds were sold: As stocks rebounded: Westpac has the event wrap: The FOMC minutes reflected a generally positive outlook


Prepare for the dwelling construction jobs bust

The ABS yesterday released dwelling construction data for the June quarter, which recorded a dead cat bounce in both commencements and completions. According to the ABS, the number of dwelling commencements rebounded by a seasonally-adjusted 1.1% over the June quarter, but crashed by 20.3% over the year. While detached house commencements fell by 10.6% over


International students set to fall as entry standards forced up

Have we finally started to make a difference? Earlier this week we learned that several Australian universities have blocked access to Indian international students from Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab. These changes to university admissions follows the Department of Home Affairs’ reclassification of student visa applications from India, Nepal and Pakistan as “high-risk”. This means


Links 10 October 2019

Global Macro / Markets / Investing: “Close To A Standstill”: IMF Warns Global Growth Will Be Cut To Lowest Since Lehman – Zero Hedge Powell says the Fed will start expanding its balance sheet soon – CNBC Wall Street Falls on Persistent Trade War Concerns – Stock Market News The best ways to invest an


Who wins the Trump impeachment battle?

Via The Guardian: Donald Trump pushed the United States towards a constitutional crisis on Tuesday when his legal counsel said the White House would refuse to cooperate with Congress’s impeachment inquiry. “Given that your inquiry lacks any legitimate constitutional foundation, any pretense of fairness, or even the most elementary due process protections, the Executive Branch


Credit Suisse growth tracker crashes into deep recession

Oh yes, via Damien Boey at Credit Suisse: Over the past few days, we have witnessed some rather sharp deterioration in the leading indicators of Australian growth: Westpac consumer confidence fell sharply in early October to 92.8 from 98.2. For reference, readings below 100 have historically been associated with contraction. Westpac home-buying sentiment fell in


More evidence New Zealand’s ‘skills-based’ visa system is failing

Much like Australia, New Zealand purports to run a ‘skills-based’ visa system that plugs critical skills shortages across the nation. However, new data from Statistics New Zealand actually shows that fewer of those migrating to New Zealand are of working-age. From The Government’s decision to open the door to the parents of migrants to


Private health insurers need to stop seeking handouts

Stephen Duckett – the director of the health program at Grattan Institute – has lashed calls from the private health insurance industry for the government to lift funding by another $1.2 billion: Last week’s call by Private Healthcare Australia, the private health insurance industry lobby group, for another $1.2bn handout shows the message has not


Global investors flee Aussie banks

Via Martin North: Australian banks are having their toughest time attracting investors, according to new analysis from Copley Fund Research, which monitors flows in funds with $1.2 trillion under management. An exodus by fund managers has left 91% of the 430 funds in Copley’s global analysis with zero exposure to the sector. That’s the lowest take-up on record. On average,


Is ANZUS worth the paper it is written on?

ScoMo thinks so: Scott Morrison has named the ANZUS Treaty with the US, which formalised the Australia-US alliance and was negotiated and signed by the Menzies government in 1951, as “the single most important achievement” of the Liberal Party in government. In an exclusive interview to mark the party’s 75th annivers­ary, the Prime Minister said


ABC: Melbourne’s outer migrant suburbs a “modern slum nightmare”

The ABC has published an interesting profile on the outer-Western Melbourne suburb of Tarneit, which is fast morphing into a modern migrant slum nightmare: When the Bahadur family moved into their new home in Melbourne’s booming outer west four months ago, they dreamed of suburban bliss. But it turned out to be a nightmare. “We