Category: Economy

What the economy really needs more of: trees

According to those environmental planners, shading from strategically placed street trees can lower surrounding temperatures by up to 6 degrees – or up to 20 degrees over roads. Green roofs and walls can naturally cool buildings, substantially lowering demand for air-conditioning.

By contrast, hard surfaces – including concrete, asphalt and stone – increase urban temperature by absorbing heat and radiating it back into the air.
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But though scientists have much evidence that trees and other greenery improve our mood and health, they know less about the actual mechanisms by which this occurs. Japanese research, however, suggests that when we walk through bushland we breathe in three substances: beneficial bacteria, plant-derived essential oils and negatively-charged ions.

We live our lives surrounded by beneficial bacteria, breathing them in and sharing our bodies with them. Gut-dwelling bacteria break down the food we can’t digest and produce substances that benefit us physically and mentally.

via What the economy really needs more of: trees

Privatise and perish – » The Australian Independent Media Network

LNP money management theory PRIVATISE. Driving Australia to the edge of a cliff.(ODT)

Surely there is a point where the contractor performing the ‘government’ work has to charge more than it would cost the government to perform the work themselves. But by the time that occurs, the government has deliberately deskilled itself to the level where it can’t make the correct call and take back the service provision, so it has to pay.

Global warming and its resultant climate change is no longer a theory.

It is a stark reality, as even a casual reader must grasp:

And the list goes on. Already the effects on human health and well being are widespread.

via Privatise and perish – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Wall Street, global sharemarkets falls trade tensions rise, ASX set to fall

“Investors are now beginning to worry that this heated rhetoric is something that will last for a while and could actually lead to disruption of trade,” said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research in New York.

via Wall Street, global sharemarkets falls trade tensions rise, ASX set to fall

Veteran investor Jim Rogers says next bear market will be ‘the worst in our lifetime’

American businessman Jim Rogers has a bearish outlook for global markets.

The veteran investor says that’s because even more debt has accumulated in the global economy since the financial crisis, especially in the US.

via Veteran investor Jim Rogers says next bear market will be ‘the worst in our lifetime’

Households forced to abandon luxuries and spend more of the budget on basics | Greg Jericho | Business | The Guardian

With Australian incomes falling over the past two years and stagnant over the past five, who has the money any more?

Source: Households forced to abandon luxuries and spend more of the budget on basics | Greg Jericho | Business | The Guardian

Why help to buy is no help at all to the economy | Jeffrey Frankel | Business | The Guardian

State subsidies to promote home ownership is not always a good thing – it hikes public debt, cuts labour mobility and often boosts prices not ownership levels

Source: Why help to buy is no help at all to the economy | Jeffrey Frankel | Business | The Guardian

Confidence in housing collapses to lowest level in 40 years: survey

Consumer confidence in the Australian housing market has collapsed to its lowest level in 27 years, with the proportion of Australians believing real estate was the wisest place to put savings falling to below 12 per cent, the lowest level since 1974.

Source: Confidence in housing collapses to lowest level in 40 years: survey

Riding on the backs of the poor – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Joe Hockey infamously labelled us all as “lifters or leaners”, he just mixed the labels up. The conservative government has decided it is the poor who will do all the heavy lifting when it comes to budget repair and paying for their obscene defence spending and tax cuts to the wealthy. First up they got…

Source: Riding on the backs of the poor – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Trump’s trade war would wind clock back to Great Depression era

If economists do one day possess an Arnold Schwarzenegger-style Terminator, capable of travelling back in time to alter the future, Australia Day 2017 is shaping up as a pretty good day to pick.

Source: Trump’s trade war would wind clock back to Great Depression era

Beer sales don’t take a hit from marijuana legalisation, study finds | Business | The Guardian

Research suggests cannabis legalisation linked to rise in drinking rather than users substituting Budweiser for bud-smoking

Source: Beer sales don’t take a hit from marijuana legalisation, study finds | Business | The Guardian

Government sells debt at all-time record low interest rate in wake of Brexit vote| Andrew Bolt Cheered Brexit Economics

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The Treasury’s Debt Management Office this morning sold debt at a new record low interest rate, underlining the massive appetite from investors for British Government bonds in the wake of the Brexit vote and sparking fresh calls for the Chancellor to take advantage by ramping up its infrastructure investment. The DMO sold £850m of an index-linked Gilt (or bond) that matures in 2036 at a yield of minus 1.72 per cent.

Source: Government sells debt at all-time record low interest rate in wake of Brexit vote

In a nutshell, Australians are becoming poorer – » The Australian Independent Media Network

By Arthur Plottier This week we have in the news the ‘The Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia Survey‘ (the HILDA report) and it does not paint a healthy picture. Despite our recent natural resources boom we are going backwards. Some of the findings in the report are: Households headed by a person aged…

Source: In a nutshell, Australians are becoming poorer – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Low-income Americans spend as much as $400 to get tax refund, report finds | US news | The Guardian

Report finds poorer Americans fall prey to tax preparers who deliberately target low-income areas and jack up prices ahead of 15 April filing deadline

Source: Low-income Americans spend as much as $400 to get tax refund, report finds | US news | The Guardian

Consume more, conserve more: sorry, but we just can’t do both | George Monbiot | Comment is free | The Guardian

Economic growth is tearing the planet apart, and new research suggests that it can’t be reconciled with sustainability

Source: Consume more, conserve more: sorry, but we just can’t do both | George Monbiot | Comment is free | The Guardian

Welcome to Austeria – a nation robbing its poor to pay for the next big crash | Aditya Chakrabortty | Comment is free | The Guardian

It’s clear George Osborne intends to make austerity permanent. Those at the top will benefit, but hard times beckon for everyone else

Source: Welcome to Austeria – a nation robbing its poor to pay for the next big crash | Aditya Chakrabortty | Comment is free | The Guardian

Negative gearing benefits the rich far more than everyday Australians, analysis shows

One of Australia’s most respected public policy think-tanks says ‘negative gearing’ does not benefit everyday Australians in the way its proponents suggest.

Source: Negative gearing benefits the rich far more than everyday Australians, analysis shows

Fact check: Comparing Australia’s income tax take with other OECD countries – Fact Check – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Scott Morrison says Australia relies more on income tax than all other OECD countries except Denmark. Is this correct? ABC Fact Check investigates.

Source: Fact check: Comparing Australia’s income tax take with other OECD countries – Fact Check – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Who Is Robbing America? The 1%. And The 99% Don’t Even Know. AnonHQ

Ever wondered how much is spent annually to feed the poor ‘lazy’ Americans? Three main programs needy families depend upon — Temporary Assistance for Needy Families ($17.3 billion), Food Stamps ($74 billion), and Earned Income Tax Credit ($67.2 billion) — cost $158.5 billion a year. …

Source: Who Is Robbing America? The 1%. And The 99% Don’t Even Know. AnonHQ

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Apocalypse now: has the next giant financial crash already begun? | Comment is free | The Guardian

A predicted global meltdown passed without event. But there are enough warning signs to suggest we are sleepwalking into another disaster

Source: Apocalypse now: has the next giant financial crash already begun? | Comment is free | The Guardian

Iceland, Where Bankers Actually Go To Jail For Committing White-Collar Crimes | ThinkProgress

Turns out throwing white-collar criminals in jail doesn’t kill your economy.

Source: Iceland, Where Bankers Actually Go To Jail For Committing White-Collar Crimes | ThinkProgress

Economy Heading South. No One at the Helm. – » The Australian Independent Media Network

The latest figures on the health of the Australian economy as shown in the June 2015 quarter National Accounts continues to paint a gloomy picture. Meanwhile, the spin that Treasurer Joe Hockey and Finance Minister Mathias Cormann offer, is priceless. It seems the thrust of their argument is that it doesn’t matter how bad the…

Source: Economy Heading South. No One at the Helm. – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Jitters as Australian economy grows by just 0.2% in June quarter | Business | The Guardian

Quarterly growth figure is half the expected rate, dragged down by reduced mining and construction activity and export woes

Source: Jitters as Australian economy grows by just 0.2% in June quarter | Business | The Guardian

Do you know what’s wrong with Chafta?

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Battlers and plutocrats: How political connections reward Australia’s super-rich

Research reveals a huge proportion of Australia’s richest people amass their wealth via political connections rather than via innovative businesses – which is helping them at the expense of everyone else.

Source: Battlers and plutocrats: How political connections reward Australia’s super-rich

The China FTA is a direct attack on jobs – jobs for our kids – jobs for the future.

The Truth is very, very slowly becoming clearer and clearer about the China FTA. It’s now been revealed that there are a number of side letters that were exchanged between the countries.

In one, the Abbott Government has sold out the jobs of tradies to the Chinese. Under the agreement there will be NO requirement for Chinese workers who come into Australia to have the necessary trade qualifications or accreditation that Australian workers have. So much for “Tony’s Tradies”.

First time in 20 years, there are more than 800,000 Australians unemployed. Every Picture tells a story.

100,000 more people have joined the jobs queue since Tony Abbott was elected and Australia’s unemployment rate has now had a six in front of it for over a year.

Under Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey’s Liberals we have the most people unemployed since 1994, and their only plan is to bring back WorkChoices.