Household debt hits 200%; house prices sliding

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Total Household Debt restated upwards to 200% of disposable income In recent weeks there have been a number of data points which highlight the pressures facing the household sector. Household debt in Australia is extremely elevated and it was concerning to see the Australian Bureau of Statistics upwardly revise debt levels following the inclusion of […]

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First home buyers return; record building work

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Consumer confidence, Housing finance, Building activity Consumer confidence: The Westpac/Melbourne Institute survey of consumer sentiment rose by 1.8 per cent in January – a 4-year high. The index now stands at 105.1 (long-term average 101.5). A reading above 100 denotes optimism. Number of home loans: The number of loans (commitments) for home owners (owner-occupiers) rose […]

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Confident consumers; luxury cars retreat

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New vehicle sales; Consumer sentiment Consumer confidence: The weekly ANZ/Roy Morgan consumer confidence rating rose by 1.2 per cent to 123.5 last week – the highest level in four years and well above the long-run monthly average of 112.9. The reading on personal finances is the second highest in nine years of records. New vehicle sales: The […]

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Debit card growth the strongest in 4½ years

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Credit cards Credit cards: The average credit card balance rose by $65.90 to $3,127.70 in November – the largest monthly increase in 12 months. However, the smoothed annual growth rate of credit card balances fell by 0.3 per cent in November. Debit cards preferred: Purchases made with debit cards grew by an annual rate of 15.2 per […]

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The Fed hikes again, still gradual but likely to be a bit faster next year – implications for investors and Australia

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Key points The Fed has raised interest rates for the fifth time since first raising rates this cycle two years ago, taking the Fed Funds rate from a range of 1.0-1.25% to 1.25-1.5%. The reflects the ongoing strength of the US economy. Given ongoing low wages growth and low inflation, further Fed hikes are likely […]

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2018 Global and local economic outlook

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The global economy is on course for its best year since 2010 as GDP in both the U.S. and the Eurozone is now expected to grow more rapidly than had been previously forecast, according to the OECD, with acceleration likely in 2018. Corporate earnings growth in developed and emerging markets has been strong (above 10%) and […]

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Insight’s Global economic outlook for the week – as at 8 December, 2017

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Market and economic review Markets: profit-taking in equities while the US yield curve continues to flatten Stocks were buoyed at the start of the week by progress on the US tax bill, but equity market gyrations were the most notable feature of the week as profit-taking on year-to-date winners continued to be an obvious theme. […]

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Weekly market update – week ending 8 December, 2017

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Investment markets and key developments over the past week Shares had a few wobbles early in the past week with a bit of profit taking partly triggered by the US Senate’s tax reform bill delaying the corporate tax rate cut until 2019 and its retention of the alternative minimum tax for corporates which could mean […]

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The Big Issues of 2018

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The Big Issues of 2018 For the past 16 years we have produced “The Big Issues” report – a report that has sought to highlight the issues that are expected to influence the economy over the forthcoming 12 months. Now this is no crystal ball gazing exercise. The aim is not just to forecast where certain economic […]

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Weekly market update – week ending 1 December, 2017

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Investment markets and key developments over the past week While US shares rose over the last week to new record highs helped by progress on tax reform and Jerome Powell confirming that he would opt for less onerous financial regulation at the Fed and Japanese shares also rose, Eurozone and Chinese shares fell and Australian […]

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