17 October 2021
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Did the advent of the telephone depersonalise communications?

I wonder whether the development of the telephone paradoxically depersonalised communications. One thing you are struck by when you read history from the pre-telephone days is how intimate and personal the correspondence was. Men writing to each other often did so in a manner that would be described in sensual or homophobic terms today despite […]

You know you have a cost of living problem when Ross Gittins claims otherwise

We all know that Ross Gittins does the RBA's heavy lifting for it. For ages now, I have been arguing that the RBA will be getting very worried about inflation expectations. And when Ross Gittins publishes a pretty remarkable article arguing that the cost of living is not really a problem (wrong), that it has […]

Lambtastic - bring on Australia Day

I have to say the latest instalment from Sam Kekovich is ‘lambtastic’. What a clever way to get people talking and therefore thinking about lamb a lot. It is certainly working as my kids want lamb every second night. Australia Day looms and I have hundreds of lamb recipes but three real favourites. The first […]

On social capital and inequality

While I was on my summer sojourn I took time out from the standard financial markets fare to read two reviews of a new book, Disconnected, by the up and coming Labor MP, Andrew Leigh. Dr Leigh draws on the research he produced while serving as one of ANU’s youngest tenured professors to track the […]

Population + immigration growth falling through floor

As our unemployment rate falls below five per cent, prepare for wage-price spirals. Labour supply is plummeting. From CommSec: "Overall, Australia’s population grew by 1.72 per cent over past year, easing away from the 40-year record pace of 2.2 per cent recorded in the year to March 2009. A total of 215,600 people migrated to […]

Why have Aussie utility prices been rising so rapidly?

One of the RBA Bulletin article looks at the question of why utility prices have been increasing so quickly and includes some very interesting charts (see below and the capital stock chart in particular): “Large increases in the prices of utilities have been a notable feature of consumer price inflation in Australia in recent years, […]

Boxing Day - an easy lunch after the big day

The crazy day is over and you just want to relax, watch the Boxing Day test, hang at the beach or go to the park with the kids riding their new bikes. The last thing you want to do is spend hours in the kitchen, and as very few shops are open you need something […]

Traditional Christmas Day food

I am a pretty traditional Christmas day foodie. As a kid, all I cared about was getting the turkey leg, whether I’d find money in the pudding and grabbing a spoon of hard sauce every time I passed the freezer in the weeks leading up to the big day (we made about four times what […]

Christmas party ideas #2 - the intimate dinner

Christmas is the time to catch up on close friends and family – the perfect occasion for an intimate dinner party. Make a date to do this before festive work functions and family commitments take over. It doesn’t have to be elaborate! Just simple fresh food. It’s all about being around those you love and […]

ABS makes huge upward revisions to household incomes

In the National Accounts today, the ABS has made some very large upward revisions to household incomes. Household disposable income growth has accelerated to 6.4 per cent year-on-year – it was 1.9 per cent year-on-year previously – and real household disposable income growth has accelerated by two per cent year-on-year to 4.3 per cent year-on-year […]

Christmas party ideas # 1 - the cocktail party

As I have said in the past, the key to any entertaining is the organisation. Sit down and write lists! For example: What to eat. Then make shopping lists and ‘to do’ lists. Pick food that can be mostly prepared the days before and put together on the night. What to drink. I strongly suggest […]

Mangoes - the taste of summer

For me mangos spell decadence! I don’t know if it’s the colour, flavour or texture, or simply they are pretty expensive. Except for those few wonderful weeks where you can buy a tray of them for around $29, and that window of opportunity is fast approaching! It’s the taste of summer. That’s the time to […]

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