No snapback: Reserve Bank no longer confident of quick bounce out of recession

Olga Kashubin/ShutterstockThe good news in the Reserve Bank’s latest quarterly set of forecasts is that the recession won’t be as steep as it thought last time. The bad news is it now expects ultra-weak economic growth to drag on and on, pushing out the recovery and meaning Australia won’t return to the path it was on for years if not the end of the decade. Its so-called baseline...

Vital Signs. Shorter meetings but longer days: how COVID-19 has changed the way we work

ShutterstockOne of the many things COVID-19 has had a dramatic impact on is the way many of us work. Those fortunate enough to be able to work from home have been able to adapt to this new reality – and it certainly has been “new”. Perhaps the biggest question for both employers and employees is whether working from home has led to a decrease in productivity. The fact...

Shorter meetings but longer days: how COVID-19 has changed the way we work

ShutterstockOne of the many things COVID-19 has had a dramatic impact on is the way many of us work. Those fortunate enough to be able to work from home have been able to adapt to this new reality – and it certainly has been “new”. Perhaps the biggest question for both employers and employees is whether working from home has led to a decrease in productivity. The fact...

Early access to super doesn’t justify higher compulsory contributions

A big part of the Morrison government’s response to COVID-19 has been allowing people early access to their superannuation. Australians who have claimed hardship have applied for A$30.7 billion to date. This has been happening in an environment in which compulsory super contributions are set to climb from 9.5% of wages to 12% over the next five years starting in July next year. Many in the super industry...

Warning: what COVID is doing to commercial property it is about to do to super funds

We’ve heard a lot about what the present crisis will do to home prices, less about what it will do to commercial property prices. Commercial properties include office buildings, shopping centres, hotels and warehouses. They account for 8% of the assets of Australian super funds. Melbourne’s Wesley Place commercial precinct is owned by a property trust. If their values drop (and they are falling) it will affect all...

Cutbacks may keep Virgin Australia alive for now, but its long-term prospects are bleak

Virgin Australia’s plan to sack about 3,000 of its 9,000 staff, axe its budget brand Tigerair, streamline its fleet to only Boeing 737s and suspend long-haul international flying indefinitely should come as no surprise. Its main competitor, Qantas, announced its cutbacks in June. மேலும் படிக்க: Qantas cutbacks signal hard years before airlines recover “Demand for domestic and short-haul international travel is likely to take at least three years...

Sweden eschewed lockdowns. It’s too early to be certain it was wrong

Per Bengtsson/ShutterstockSweden has become something of a cautionary tale for what happens when you attempt to tackle coronavirus without lockdowns. In The Conversation last week The Grattan Institute’s Stephen Duckett and Will Mackey said its freer approach caused almost as much economic damage as a lockdown would have, and many more deaths. It’s a theme taken up in the New York Times and in an upcoming book. Sweden’s...

What Victoria’s abattoir rules mean for the supply and price of meat

With Victoria’s declaration of a state of disaster and imposition of Stage 4 restrictions, many Melburnians have returned to panic buying. Supermarket shelves across the city have been stripped of canned goods, fresh vegetables and meat. The meat buying, at least, makes some sense. After aged care homes, meat-processing facilities have been a major contributor to Victoria’s COVID-19 outbreak. Hundreds of coronavirus cases have been linked to about...

Our states are crying poor. They wouldn’t if they charged for rezoning like the ACT

Google MapsThroughout Australia, when land is rezoned from industrial to high-rise residential, a charge is levied to help fund the required infrastructure. In NSW it is called an infrastructure contribution. The NSW government is reviewing it in order to cut “red tape” and “fix the uncertainty”. They are words that ought to set off alarm bells. Queensland tells us how it is likely to play out. A decade...
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