Interesting Article

We’re measured in dollars, but does that make sense? Michael Green, a social progress expert, sure doesn’t think so. Green believes the 1930s economic concept of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is now an outdated and ultimately inefficient model to compare economies in the 21st century.

But, as Green explains in an interesting Ted talk, he has a new and improved economic acronym – SPI – to reveal a more accurate ranking of today’s countries that takes into account much more than than just monetary value.

Have a read of the article or watch the video to find out more about this innovative concept, and most importantly, how Australia stacks up in this new global ranking.

ISA 1st Annual Stieglitz Essay Competition

The International Economics Association has just announced the creation of the Stiglitz Essay Prize in honour of the past president of the association Joesph E. Stiglitz. The essay will be a 5000 word maximum composition on a topic determined by Proffessor Stiglitz himself. More information about the competition can be found via this link. Submissions close in September this year with a winner and runner(s)-up being announced in 2016.

RBA/ESA Essay Competition 2015

Well it’s that time of year again! In conjunction with the Reserve Bank of Australia and Economics Society of Australia we’ve released details of the RBA/ESA annual essay competition on the RBA’s website.

This year’s essay focuses on the implications of falling commodity prices and a shift from an investment to production phase within the mining industry. Check the RBA’s website for more details and good luck!

Economics This Week

Once again this week most of the domestic economic news has been centered on whether or not the RBA will hold the line or go ahead with another cut to the cash rate in May. While earlier this month the market priced an 80% chance at a cut now it’s sitting at around 50%, but then again the there were high expectations that if the RBA didn’t cut in March then it would in April and the market was wrong on both counts.

Nonetheless, the reasons for the division in expectations for next months meeting are due to some fairly compelling arguments. One was the release of stronger than expected inflation data for the March quarter. That is to say headline inflation grew at 0.2% rather than the expected 0.1% (not a massive movement in absolute terms but still a 100% increase in relative terms). Still, this saw the annual rate fall from 1.7% to 1.3% . However, underlying inflation remained within the RBA’s 2-3% target range at 2.3%.

The other major influence was the move by China’s central bank to cut the reserve deposit ratio imposed on all banks by 100 basis points, raising hopes of increased demand for Australian iron ore. This has perhaps already been felt with a 7.6% rise in the price of iron ore deliver to the Chinese port of Quingdao.

If you’re interested you can read more here.