Ross Gittins

Ross Gittins

Ross Gittins is economics editor of the SMH and an economic columnist for The Age. His books include Gittins' Guide to Economics, Gittinomics and The Happy Economist.
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Australia: Doormat for foreign miners

Ross Gittins We can't afford to give much money to the foreign poor, but if foreign-owned mining companies want to keep forcing down ore prices by expanding production at a time when world demand is weak, that's...

Take rational measures on electricity privatisation issue


Ross Gittins I'm never sure who annoy me more, the business types who are certain every business is better run if privately owned, or the lefties who oppose every sale of government-owned businesses on principle.

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Gittins: the age of entitlement

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 20:  Treasurer Joe Hockey speaking at Tax institute National conference at Royal Pines Gold Coast. on March 20, 2015 in Brisbane, Australia.  (Photo by Robert Shakespeare/Fairfax Media)Click to play video

Ross Gittins I guess by now Joe Hockey has realised that when you promise the end of "the age of entitlement", you’re opening a can of worms.

Friendless fiscal policy about to get invited to the economic party


Ross Gittins Fiscal policy may be due a comeback as countries look to stabilise demand through the ups and downs of the business cycle.

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We're not taking productivity seriously


Ross Gittins Given our obsession with materialism, productivity "isn't everything, but in the long run it is almost everything," as Paul Krugman famously said.

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QE has failed to revive mired economies


Ross Gittins The advent of "stagflation" in the 1970s - the previously unknown combination of high inflation with high unemployment - led to a loss of confidence in Keynesian policies, with primary responsibility...

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Econocrats doubt our ability to grow

Ross Gittins

Ross Gittins Reform, we're asked to believe, is only a fleeting fix. To maintain an acceptable rate of productivity improvement, reform must be unceasing (and defy the law of diminishing returns).

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State governments need to step up


Ross Gittins Sorry to rain on Hockey's parade, but "solid" growth is a euphemism for "not so hot".

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Treasury under new management

Ross Gittins.

Ross Gittins How much does the Treasury's view of the world change when a prime minister comes to power, sacks the head of Treasury (and his heir apparent) and replaces him with his own hand-picked man from...

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Advances in statistical science mean we only need a census every 10 years


Ross Gittins What's the difference between a census – a full count – and a sample survey? The census will always be superior, right? Not really.

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One bad budget doesn't kill all reform


Ross Gittins The 2014 budget will go down as the most fateful budget in Australia's history but reform is still possible

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Long-term employment trends: retired workers happy to put their feet up


Ross Gittins The trouble with the way the media report developments in the labour market from one month to the next is that we don't get a sense of the major shifts that occur over time.

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Don't fix budget while economy weak


Ross Gittins To start slashing and burning in this year's budget would give the economy another kick in the guts, which would slow growth even further.

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Ross Gittins

RBA channelling hopes for economy


Ross Gittins Although many people have their doubts, the Reserve Bank cut interest rates last week believing it would help the economy grow faster and reduce unemployment. But how exactly is this meant to work?

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Ross Gittins

Worried Reserve Bank officials opt for risky strategy


Ross Gittins My guess is the Reserve Bank is a lot more worried about the weak state of the economy than it's prepared to admit in its soothing words and the small downgrade to its growth forecast.

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Ross Gittins

Searching for our salvation in privatisation


Ross Gittins The era of privatising government-owned businesses is pretty much done and dusted, but two governments have dragged their feet.

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Economists shouldn't be apologists for business

Ross Gittins

Ross Gittins As the nation's economists gird their loins for a year of furious debate over economic management and reform, there's a soul-searching question they need to face.

Ross Gittins

CPI: How the ABS gets the measure of the inflation situation


Ross Gittins So, the Bureau of Statistics has spoken. But how does the bureau come up with its figures? And who believes them?

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Ross Gittins

There's always a tab tied to free emotion

Ross Gittins dinkus

Ross Gittins At times such as the Martin Place siege and its tragic aftermath, it doesn't help to have been trained to think like an economist, to analyse the situation as coolly and rationally as possible,...

Materialist success has come at the cost of the environment


Ross Gittins Tired of obsessing over what happened in the economy yesterday? Well, just this once, let's go to the opposite extreme and look at what's been happening during the past 200 years.

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