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Investor Signposts: Week Beginning 2 August, 2021

Australia: Lockdowns to test Reserve Bank resolve In the coming week, the Reserve Bank (RBA) will be front-and-centre of investors’ minds with the Board due to provide updates on its policy settings and latest economic forecasts. But the week kicks-off on Monday when manufacturing purchasing managers’ indexes (PMIs) are issued by both IHS Markit and…

Support to fossil fuel research is more than apparent

Australian governments direct billions to fossil fuel companies. Among the projects funded by Commonwealth and state governments are work on coal ports, railways and power stations, and research into “clean coal” or “coal innovation”. Whether worthwhile or not, this funding is visible and can be debated on its merits, as The Australia Institute has done…

In review: Lessons from COVID-19

Among the many messages is the notable one that competence matters during emergencies but is hard to achieve. Severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, hit Taiwan hard in 2003. The virus tore through several hospitals and Heping hospital in Taipei was hastily closed, imprisoning staff and patients, after the head nurse became one of the…

Equity market rally set to boost income

For trust and income beneficiaries, the June quarter – much like the 2021 financial year – was mixed. Record low interest rates continued to put the brakes on interest income, and while there has been some recovery in dividends from the early days of the pandemic, they are still below 2019 financial year levels. On…

Investor Signposts: Week Beginning 19 July, 2021

Australia: Retail spending data and Reserve Bank hog the spotlight The release of provisional retail trade data is the highlight of the coming week. Minutes of the last Reserve Bank (RBA) Board meeting are also released with preliminary IHS Markit purchasing managers’ indexes for July. The week kicks-off on Tuesday when the RBA Board issues…

Investor Signposts: Week Beginning 12 July, 2021

Australia: Jobs data is the highlight The highlight in the coming week is the June jobs data. But both consumer and producer sentiment gauges vie for attention. The week kicks-off on Monday when the Australian Institute of Petroleum (AIP) issues the weekly data on petrol prices. And Datium Insights issues the weekly update on used…

The Weighing Machine

Advocates of the “Buy and Hold” school of investing have long clung to the reported quotation from Benjamin Graham, the acknowledged rather of value investing: “In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run, it is a weighing machine.” Taken as written, the quote seems to imply a dichotomy…

Investor Signposts: Week Beginning 5 July, 2021

Australia: Reserve Bank ‘taper’ time? In the coming week the Reserve Bank (RBA) will be front-and-centre of investors’ minds with the Board considering whether to adjust its monetary policy settings, including its yield curve target and bond purchases. The week kicks-off on Monday with the release of the ‘final’ May retail trade figures. Preliminary spending…

Investor Signposts: Week Beginning 28 June, 2021

Australia: One year ends, another begins The coming week will be littered with reports looking back on the 2020/21 financial year and looking forward to 2021/22. The past year has been a surprisingly positive one for the Australian economy. And, providing virus cases are suppressed and more people ‘get the jab’, there is plenty to…

Scarcity drives opportunity

Scarcity is a prime mover in capitalist economies. The scarceness of a good drives price movements, substitution into alternatives and innovation to create workarounds. The unfettered pursuit of these responses allows for the smooth functioning of the economy and means that capitalist societies rarely face the line-up-in-a-queue shortages that have become the hallmark of more…