Stuff the carbon price. The country needs a cliche tax.A tax on politicians and other policy players from uttering cliches, glib comments or inane insights could save the Budget and set up the nation’s finances.Julia Gillard, the Prime Minister who ...July 16, 12:21 pm
Perth’s obsession at dinner party conversations about house prices is being replaced by an obsession about coffee, jewellery and the latest SUV.It’s a reflection of the way our spending priorities are changing.And a reason why certain retailers whin...July 9, 12:26 pm
It’s C-Day plus one. That is it’s one day since a carbon price was introduced into this country.And, apparently, the country has continued on without falling apart.Be it a wrecking ball, a cobra strike or a python or, to borrow from Kevin Rudd and h...July 2, 12:09 pm
You can find structural change in the most unlikely of places.On the back page of the Sydney Morning Herald last week was plastered an article entitled Cradle Snatchers.The story was about the audacity of the local Australian Football League to take...June 25, 1:20 pm
‘We know things are bad. Worse than bad. They’re crazy.’ — Peter Finch, NetworkIn his famous “mad as hell” speech, Peter Finch urged his viewing audience to get angry first and then act.Finch, playing newsman Howard Beale, complained about homicides...May 28, 11:34 am
It’s a $4.8 billion question. Christian Porter’s second Budget shows that after all the movement of cash, all the bellyaching about lost GST, about the problems of cuts in revenue, there is a great big question to be asked about a huge pot of money ...May 21, 12:34 pm
Well, it appears tax reform in this country has died.Despite all the talk from both sides of the political fence, and by those outside of Parliament who say they want change, there is no one willing to give it the kiss of life.The final blow to tax ...May 14, 12:51 pm
As a pea and thimble trick, Wayne Swan’s fifth Budget is in a class all of its own.The financial blueprint unveiled by the world’s greatest treasurer is a room of smoke and mirrors hidden in a mirage on the edge of reality.It’s a fudge. It’s budgeti...May 9, 12:48 pm
Here is a real scoop, readers. There I was, just innocently walking by Treasury on a cool Canberra evening, and there among the autumn leaves was a copy of Wayne Swan’s Budget speech* .Across the front was the line “what Swan should say” — suggesti...May 7, 12:17 pm
The Reserve Bank board will cut official interest rates tomorrow. Of that, dear readers, there is no doubt.At its last meeting, the board made clear that if the upcoming consumer price index showed inflation at bay then it would move on the cash rat...April 30, 12:27 pm
Two weeks from today, the Australian public is going to be given an almighty Budget earbashing. It will start a couple of seconds after Wayne Swan stands up in the Federal Parliament to deliver what will be his fifth Budget.From either side of the p...April 24, 1:15 pm
Everyone seems to be worried about structural change. Unions are talking about it, business leaders are talking about it, both sides of politics sort of nod that it is under way and the Reserve Bank keeps mentioning the change happening across all p...April 16, 12:25 pm
Has the most important lesson of the Great Recession been forgotten already? I’m not talking about regulation of banks, the stupidity of financiers and homeowners or the ignorance of regulators — all issues that were front and centre of the events t...April 9, 12:13 pm
The past two years have been dominated by the debate about Australia’s two-speed economy.There are the moans from the manufacturing and tourism sectors about how they are being hammered by the high Australian dollar which is largely a function of Au...April 2, 11:16 am
"If there is one thing true in a commercial as in a monetary system, it is that sudden and frequent changes are detrimental to the activity and stability of commerce," according to a 1904 edition of the London-based Bankers' Magazine.Unfortunately, ...March 18, 9:00 pm
The official Budget silly season is off and running.The starting gun was fired by Treasurer Wayne Swan last week when he revealed, in a moment of candour, that more savings would be needed to ensure a surplus in 2012-13 was delivered in the May Budg...March 11, 9:00 pm
Are the 11.3 million people of Greece being punished for the sins - known or yet to be discovered - inflicted by others elsewhere?For all the criticism of Greece, from its fiscal policy lies to the creative ways Greeks have gone to avoid paying tax,...March 4, 9:00 pm
Over the past decade or so the Federal government has handed out cash to particular industries in a bid to assist them.In the case of one industry this largesse has run to $39 billion, and it's a handout that has been growing sharply.No, it's not th...February 19, 9:00 pm
In a week's time the Reserve Bank will have its first meeting of the year. If financial markets and many pundits are to be believed, the Reserve is set to reduce official rates to about 3.25 per cent by year's end starting with a quarter of a percen...January 31, 12:41 pm
It's a good year for making economic predictions.There is so much going on that if you make enough prognostications then there's a good chance of at least a couple coming true.After a year that started with some promise, veered towards economic disa...January 2, 11:52 am
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