The Reserve Bank now forecasts real household incomes will take longer to recover than they did during the 1990s recession and is also projecting economic growth at historical lows. Australian consumers are right to feel worried about the future.
The signs are already evident that household consumption is falling despite most mortgage holders yet to feel the full effects of the rate rises. The Reserve Bank however believes more pain is needed.
The cost of mortgages is soaring and households are spending less in the shops – the Reserve Bank should hold off on raising rates again next week
Most economists believe inflation has peaked and yet the Reserve Bank is still expected to raise rates next month despite real wages falling by more than 4% last year.
Home loans have fallen sharply in the past year, and the rate rises are clearly having a major impact. As such the Reserve Bank needs to wait before raising them again.
The Stage 3 tax cuts will cost $300bn in their first 9 years. A new tool shows how we can spend the money better
When you reduce the revenue available to fund government services, you inevitably increase inequality
The build up of savings during the pandemic is over – now we need strong income growth to keep the economy going as the Reserve Bank tries to slow it.
For most of this year, the warnings and news about inflation have been one of hope for the best but experience the worst. Predictions of future inflation growth have continually been revised upwards and with it has been the suggestion that interest rates need to keep rising.
The latest economic outlook from the OECD highlights the precarious path for Australia over the next few years.
The latest wages price index figures show that for the first time since 2013 wages grew by more than 3% in the past year.
Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine caused a massive surge in gas and LNG prices that have enabled gas companies around the world, including Australia to make record-level profits.
Proposed reforms to Commonwealth industrial relations laws would create more opportunities for collective bargaining to occur on a multi-employer basis, rather than being limited solely to individual workplaces or enterprises. Business groups have attacked this proposal as a dramatic change that would supposedly spark widespread work stoppages and industrial chaos.
The current tightening of monetary policy is undoubtedly having an impact. While it may take some time for the slowing of inflation to flow through to the official CPI figures – especially given the level of inflation that is being imported – the economy is set to slow drastically.
In the past 7 months, the Reserve Bank has increased the cash rate by 275 basis points. That is as fast as any time since the RBA became independent. Given the pace of inflation growth, the rises are not wholly without cause, but as policy director, Greg Jericho notes in his Guardian Australia column the main drivers of inflation are now easing, and wages are yet to take off. In that case, should the RBA continue to raise rates given it will only slow the economy further?
On Wednesday the latest inflation figures showed that in the 12 months to September prices across Australia grew by 7.3% – the fastest rate since 1990.
The latest data from the Bureau of Statistics on families shows that more than ever before couples with dependants are both working.
This week the IMF released its latest World Economic Outlook. And the outlook is dire. Economic growth around the world was downgraded with recession-like conditions being predicted for many advanced economies including the USA, UK and much of the EU.
This week the UK government introduced massive high-income tax cuts – cuts that are not even as bad as the Stage 3 tax cuts here in Australia. And the reaction by the market was brutal. Investors saw the tax cuts for what they were – a redistribution of national income from the poorest to the wealthiest, that provided no economic growth. As a result the value of the UK Pound plunged.
Last week before the House Economics Committee, the Governor of the Reserve Bank made it clear that the current rise in inflation has nothing to do with wages growth. And yet he also made it clear he expects workers to bear the brunt of the cost that comes from slowing inflation.
Since the Reserve Bank began raising interest rates in May, the housing market has very much come off the boil.
The June quarter GDP figures released by the Bureau of Statistics showed that over the past year the economy grew a seemingly strong 3.6%.
The Stage 3 tax cuts, which will essentially create a flat income tax system, have always been clearly biased towards high-income earners. For those earning over $200,000, the tax cuts represent a 4.5% cut compared to just 0.6% for someone on the median income of $60,000. But this week, the Parliamentary Budget Office has released costings that detail just how skewed the allocation of money is to the richest in our society.
For most of the past 40 years whenever the discussion turns to the need to lift productivity, invariably the conversation is dominated by business groups and various media commentators who suggest the solution is more labour market flexibility. Just a bit more flexibility and productivity will improve!
The latest wages price index figures from the Bureau of Statistics reveal just how far workers ability to purchase items with what they earn has fallen.
The 2019-20 taxation statistics released this week by the ATO provide a plethora of data that reveals with precision the salaries of people by location, occupation age and importantly, gender.
The latest raise in the cash rate has meant interest rates have increased by more in 4 months than they have anytime since 1994.
The latest inflation figures from the Bureau of Statistics reveal just how much workers have been left behind. Writing in Guardian Australia, labour market and fiscal policy director Greg Jericho notes that while the focus is on the biggest annual increase in inflation since the introduction of the GST, the data also shows that real wages have fallen drastically.
Despite unemployment at nearly 50 years lows, it will be little surprise to workers that wages growth is only at 3 year highs. Over the past decade the relationship between wages growth and unemployment has shifted such that levels of unemployment that would have once seen wages growing at more than 4% are now associated with growth of well below 3%.
Right now, the big numbers of the economy look pretty good. Unemployment in June was just 3.5% – the lowest since 1974. So why has consumer confidence crashed and why are so many Australians worried about a recession?