Why minimum wages are a fantasy

Why minimum wages are a fantasy

The success of Mad Men, the racy TV series about the advertising industry, contributed to the number of people wanting to get into the industry and pushed wages right down. The average annual wage of an advertising account executive is $53,000, an hourly wage a bit over $24. But the expectation is that account executives…
Are you buying a dip or a downward spiral?

Are you buying a dip or a downward spiral?

The author, for example, once had the genius idea of buying Lehman Brothers shares in September 2008 when the share price had fallen from $US70 to $US2. The US doesn't let banks fail, I thought; within days it will be rescued and the share price will bounce right back up again. The Fed decided to…
NSW Labor promises larger budget surplus

NSW Labor promises larger budget surplus

The costings also don't include the price of Labor's offer to increase public service wages by more than 3 per cent, which is above the current 2.5 per cent limit imposed by the Coalition. The budget office said it couldn't calculate the wages cost "because any benefits would occur on an agreement-by-agreement basis and, for…
Michael Daley, the striver who would be premier

Michael Daley, the striver who would be premier

Does charisma matter? That Daley, a 50-year-old ex-customs officer, could become premier of the largest state in the Commonwealth after next Saturday's NSW election raises the question: does charisma matter in politics anymore? When describing Labor's chances of winning, Daley likes to lift his eyes above the horizon and reach one hand towards an imaginary…
Stockpiles, relocations, regulations: Britain, EU brace for no-deal Brexit

Stockpiles, relocations, regulations: Britain, EU brace for no-deal Brexit

The Institute of Directors released a survey on Friday showing that one-third of its members expect to shift operations abroad after Brexit – and the proportion is two-thirds among those with an EU-facing export business. Around 16 per cent of the 1200 company directors surveyed have already triggered relocation plans or are close to doing…
Development pullback: 2018 the weakest for apartment approvals in four years

Development pullback: 2018 the weakest for apartment approvals in four years

The country's high-rise apartment supply has already peaked and completions this year will drop by almost one-third to 16,000, JLL said in its latest Residential Apartment Markets reports. "This latest data confirms that tightening credit availability and falling house prices are battering confidence in the residential sector and with the final recommendations of the banking…
A mass murder of, and for, the Internet

A mass murder of, and for, the Internet

For everyone else, it was a booby trap, a joke designed to ensnare unsuspecting people and members of the media into taking it too literally. The goal, if there was one, may have been to pull a popular internet figure into a fractious blame game and inflame political tensions everywhere. In a tweet early Friday…
Swiss regulator probes UBS Australia’s $1.2b PNG loan

Swiss regulator probes UBS Australia’s $1.2b PNG loan

The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) has confirmed it is "familiar" with the deal and said it is in "in contact with the bank". UBS declined to comment. Legitimacy questioned The renewed interest in the UBS loan followed an investigation last month by Karin Wenger, a journalist with Swiss Public Radio. Paul Barker, director…
It’s every man for himself in rush to Coalition lifeboats

It’s every man for himself in rush to Coalition lifeboats

They issued the coal call knowing, but not caring, that it would go down terribly in places like Victoria where the Coalition's standing is already dire. When the likes of Joyce and Matt Canavan pretty much openly state, as they did this week, that they don't really care if seats are lost in Melbourne, it's…
Lawyers the big winners from the post-Hayne clean up of the banks

Lawyers the big winners from the post-Hayne clean up of the banks

But until the public humiliation of the royal commission putting individuals and institutions on spectacular public show, much of ASIC's frustration was blocked by complicated legal defences and obfuscations. Even now, delays remain unacceptable to ASIC, with the report saying the institutions "have failed to sufficiently prioritise and resource their reviews". According to ASIC, the…

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