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Hamish Douglass on what really matters

Questions on the stock market/economy disconnect, how to focus long term, technology's growing role, income in a low-rate world, Modern Monetary Theory and endless debt and the tooth fairy.

Are debt and its servicing cost serious worries?

The impact of the pandemic on Australia's debt and deficit has forced the government into borrowing on a scale unimaginable at the start of 2020. What are the implications, and what is even more important?

YourSuper will save $17.9 billion! Surely you’re joshing

In Budget 2020, Josh Frydenberg announced a performance comparison tool and fund stapling to save Australians $17.9 billion over 10 years. But too many moving parts make results highly cyclical.

How active bond funds hunt for value in fixed income

Fixed income opportunities beyond term deposits and hybrids remain scarce for retail investors, but active bond funds can access other securities where value is still available. Here are examples.

Are bond yields lower forever or is the Big Bang coming?

The signs are that bond yields could stay low for a long time. This has important implications for future returns, but are we heading for the Big Bang, the Big Crunch or the Steady State?

One trillion and counting: is government debt a problem?

With about $350 billion of new government spending announced to combat COVID-19, the obvious question is whether Australia can afford it, especially when national income will fall rapidly.

Emerging markets: Nothing new under the sun

As interest rates fell in recent years, there was a push into emerging markets debt, but as worldwide central bank stimulus reduces, many of these 'emerging' countries are showing why they are poorly rated.

Will sovereign defaults spark the next GFC?

The fundamentals point toward bankruptcies of major sovereigns like the US and Japan in the next decade. The after effects could be catastrophic on all major asset classes. It’s time to discuss the makeup and costs of insurance.

Australia’s default: who do you rescue?

As it became obvious that Australia would need to default on its government debt in the 1930s, the question of whether to prioritise foreign or local debt was put to the people, with surprising results.

Australia’s default: A primer on government debt, default and inflation

Very few people realise that Australia once defaulted on its sovereign debt during the Great Depression. Learn how the split between local and foreign currency debt affects the policy options available to Governments.

China’s growth slowdown is underway

Recent developments in China’s credit and property markets could lead to a slowdown in the country’s economic growth. If this happens there would be significant implications for global investors.

Running up and paying off government debt

In the second part of our Labor v Liberal series, we look at Australia’s level of government debt since Federation. Our current debt level is low when compared to national income and the rest of the world.

Most viewed in recent weeks

10 reasons wealthy homeowners shouldn't receive welfare

The RBA Governor says rising house prices are due to "the design of our taxation and social security systems". The OECD says "the prolonged boom in house prices has inflated the wealth of many pensioners without impacting their pension eligibility." What's your view?

House prices surge but falls are common and coming

We tend to forget that house prices often fall. Direct lending controls are more effective than rate rises because macroprudential limits affect the volume of money for housing leaving business rates untouched.

Survey responses on pension eligibility for wealthy homeowners

The survey drew a fantastic 2,000 responses with over 1,000 comments and polar opposite views on what is good policy. Do most people believe the home should be in the age pension asset test, and what do they say?

100 Aussies: five charts on who earns, pays and owns

Any policy decision needs to recognise who is affected by a change. It pays to check the data on who pays taxes, who owns assets and who earns the income to ensure an equitable and efficient outcome.

Three good comments from the pension asset test article

With articles on the pensions assets test read about 40,000 times, 3,500 survey responses and thousands of comments, there was a lot of great reader participation. A few comments added extra insights.

The sorry saga of housing affordability and ownership

It is hard to think of any area of widespread public concern where the same policies have been pursued for so long, in the face of such incontrovertible evidence that they have failed to achieve their objectives.

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