The Australian Economy
Australia hasn’t had a recession – in the widely used sense of two or more consecutive quarters of negative real GDP growth – since 1991. Since then, Australia’s ranking among nations in terms of per capita GDP has risen from 22nd to, in the last four years, either 12th or 13th, behind only the United States, Norway, Switzerland and a number of other smaller states which are predominantly either oil producers or financial centres. Australia’s economic performance reflects a combination of luck and management – the relative importance and quality of which have varied significantly from time to time. Monitoring the performance of and analysing the prospects for the Australian economy has been the major part of my ‘day job’ since I completed my university degree in 1979.
September employment data show ‘effective’ unemployment rate at 10.6%News, The Australian Economy | 14th October 2021
Saul was interviewed by Sky News about the Septembfer labour orce report released on 14th October Australia could see a ‘net rebound’ in employment come November | Sky News Australia
Old wine in new bottles: more ‘rent-seeking’ from South Australian manufacturing interestsEconomic Policies, Publications, The Australian Economy | 17th September 2021
There’s a new lobby group pleading for preferential treatment for manufacturing in the name of ensuring ‘sovereignty’, a word of which the present Federal Government is especially fond. But it boils down to the same old rent-seeking that has been a feature of Australian manufacturing policy for most of the past 120 years. (Full text […]
This is a recession – we’re just not calling it oneEconomic Policies, Publications, The Australian Economy | 9th September 2021
Op-ed published in the Australian Financial Review of 9th August 2021 – arguing (1) that we are in a recession now, irrespective of whether we have two consecutive quarterly contractions in real GDP, and (2) that although it shares some of the ‘responsibility’ for this second recession, the federal government’s fiscal policy response to it […]
Spoiler alert: we’re in a recession, even if it’s not ‘official’Publications, The Australian Economy | 31st August 2021
Jessica Irvine, senior economics columnist with the Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne Age newspapers, discusses Saul’s views on the meaning of the term ‘recession’ and whether Australia is once again in one now
Is Australia having a Second Recession?Australian Society and Politics, News, Publications, The Australian Economy | 16th August 2021
A recession is commonly defined as two or more quarters of negative growth in real GDP. But that’s a silly rule – and it isn’t used in the US, where the body which officially delineates recessions last month said that the 2020 recession lasted just two months. If the bushfires of late 2019 and early […]
Reflections on the 2021 Intergenerational ReportEconomic Policies, Taxation, The Australian Economy | 15th August 2021
The 2021 IGR, released some six weeks ago, suggests that Australia will be running budget deficits for the next 40 years. But that’s only because of the quite arbitrary assumption that tax collections will remain ‘capped’ at 23.9% of GDP, forever more. There’s no reason why that should be the case.