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Australia Goes Back to the 1980s With Its Economy Closed to World

Australia’s success in curbing Covid-19 infections is allowing it to slowly ease some restrictions even as it remains largely closed off from the rest of the world, taking its economy back to the pre-globalization era.
Mining and agriculture continue to support exports and a government-sponsored group is looking at ways to revive manufacturing. But the flow of foreign tourists, students and immigrants has been frozen, pinning hopes for a rebound on local consumption.
The closed borders and domestic reliance has the economy harking back to the 1980s, before the lifting of tariffs opened up trade and Paul Hogan offered to put another shrimp on the Barbie for international visitors.
Services Driven Nearly two-thirds of economic output from service industries
Australian Bureau of Statistics
Nominal gross value added, 2018-19
The capacity of services to quickly turnaround and the fact Aussies aren’t blowing savings on holidays abroad could help the nation fare better than many developed-world peers. Much will depend on the mood of households as unemployment rises, with a poor construction outlook adding to headwinds.
What Bloomberg’s Economists Say “Close to 1 million Australians per month traveled overseas in 2019. They will now be looking for a change of destination, heading to Noosa instead of Nusa Dua; Port Douglas, not Penang; and catching up with friends at bars in Melbourne Laneways, instead of Hong Kong’s mid levels. Containment measures change the economics of international travel.”
James McIntyre, economist
Household consumption, which makes up around 55% of the economy, has been boosted on the one hand by people stocking up on essentials during the lockdown, but hammered on the other as they couldn’t eat out or go to the movies. Shops and restaurants are gradually reopening but, for consumption to drive any rebound, households must put aside concerns over job security and debt to drive spending. That may be tough.
Wesfarmers Ltd. is seeing shift in consumer behavior across its retail portfolio. Home improvement and office products stores, Bunnings and Officeworks, have seen significant uplift in sales, while general merchandise stores, Target and Kmart, have seen sales slow.
Pessimistic households have consumption outlook seeming bleak Even before Covid-19, Australian households were among the most indebted in the developed world, with debt almost double disposable income. The threat of unemployment to people’s ability to meet their debts is now key, and the Reserve Bank of Australia has long acknowledged it as a major risk facing the economy.
The unemployment rate is currently 6.2%, with the central bank expecting it to peak at around 10%. Banks are offering repayment holidays to help tide homeowners over and have quadrupled provisions for an expected surge in bad debts.
Australia Passes Massive Stimulus Measures as Virus Spreads People wait in line outside a Centrelink office in the Bondi Junction suburb of Sydney, March 2020.Photographer: Brendon Thorne/Bloomberg The absence of skilled migration due to closed national borders will also hit pause on what had been steady stream of profitable mortgage lending for the banks. That could flow through to housing prices if sustained.
Commonwealth Bank of Australia said its base case is for an 11% fall in home prices, though in a prolonged downturn a cumulative 32% slump is possible. National Australia Bank Ltd. said in a severe downturn, prices could plummet 21% this year.
Uncertainty and job insecurity impacting property market Residential construction typically closely follows house price movements, and the sector was already scaling back activity following the previous flood of new stock still working its way into the market.
The RBA earlier this month said that indications from the initial stages of the development process suggests demand for new housing “has deteriorated significantly.” It expects dwelling investment to plunge 17% in the 12 months through June and remain a drag on growth until 2021.
Property investors have been hit by the six month moratorium on tenancy evictions during coronavirus. Without renewed interest from investors, it’s challenging to get a new apartment development, particularly of any size, into construction.
The same holds for business investment. Unless the project was already underway, or is related to creating a covid-safe environment, capital expenditure plans have been parked until demand returns.
Natural Endowment Things look brighter as you leave the cities. Internationally, Australia is known as a commodity powerhouse. While it accounts for just 10% of output, it is a key source of export income and prosperity in the country.
Iron ore shipments from Port Hedland, a key export hub, hit a record for April, while gold sales from Perth Mint -- the main refiner -- also surged. Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. lifted its projected annual iron ore shipments in a wager on China’s recovery. “We are selling everything we can possibly produce,” Chairman Andrew Forrest says.
Net exports important source of economic growth It’s less rosy for the liquefied natural gas producers. Just as the coronavirus sent the global economy into lockdown, Russia and Saudi Arabia began a standoff that sent oil prices tumbling below zero.
Top producers Woodside Petroleum Ltd. and Santos Ltd. have slashed spending plans and deferred flagship growth projects -- worth over $15 billion -- in line with drastic steps by energy majors worldwide to hunker down during the pandemic.
On The Sheep’s Back Virus Fears Grow In Sydney As Growing GDP Expected To Be Hit Rolls of toilet papers sit in an empty section of a supermarket in Sydney, March 2020..Photographer: Brendon Thorne/Bloomberg As supermarket shelves were stripped bare, a panicked nation was reminded of the sheer mass of food the country’s farmers produce. Domestic food production services more than 90% of fresh produce sold in supermarkets and still is able to more than match that amount in exports.
The industry could also become an unexpected source of employment. Backpackers and workers from Pacific Islands flock to rural areas to pick up work with seasonal tasks, but with borders shut and jobs being lost across the economy, farmers are likely turn to the local community for the extra labor.
Other producers have greater worries. Barley and meat exporters have been caught in China’s crosshairs in retaliation for Australia’s public call for an independent investigation of the coronavirus outbreak, while the wine industry is looking on nervously.
It’s been a tough year for wine, even before the virus. Clonakilla winery in New South Wales, north of Canberra, decided against producing a 2020 vintage after analysis showed unacceptably high levels of smoke taint from wildfires over the summer.
Exploring Our Own Backyard Australia's China Reliance Backfires as Virus Fallout Spreads Students sit on the grass at the University of Sydney, Feb. 2020.Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg The education industry was one of the first to feel the pinch from coronavirus restrictions. When the government imposed travel bans on flights from China in February, around 100,000 international students were unable to enter Australia to begin the academic year and left universities bracing for a costly fallout.
The University of Sydney, where students from China represented nearly one-quarter of the total student body, projected a A$470 million loss this year. Other institutions, including the University of Melbourne and Monash University, are bracing for similar hits. Even smaller regional institutions that don’t attract nearly the same level of international students have been affected.
With a lot of money at stake, there could be a relaxation of international border restrictions for students to study in Australia, before leisure travelers are allowed. But for businesses catering toward an offshore audience, demand is unlikely to snap back.
Qantas Airways Ltd. is currently operating just 1% of its network and has canceled overseas fights until at least the end of July. Its main competitor, Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd., collapsed into administration in April.
Virgin Australia Collapses After Pandemic Halts Air Travel Virgin Australia check-in kiosks inside a deserted Sydney Airport, April 2020. Photographer Brendon Thorne/Bloomberg Crown Resorts Ltd. and Star Entertainment Group Ltd., which both target big-spending visitors from Asia, were forced to close their casinos in Australia as the country locked down. Crown is just months away from completing a A$2.2 billion luxury gaming resort in Sydney.
The tourism industry was already reeling from the wave of cancellations following the December and January wildfires. The silver lining is that Australians will have no option but to spend holidays on home soil once inter-state travel is allowed again.
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Live Discussion: 2018 Brownlow Medal

Live Chat
Mason Cox Live Tweeting
Welcome everyone to the 2018 Brownlow Medal night!
Patrick Cripps will look to garner enough sympathy votes from the umpires for carrying Carlton to a record 2-win season, Max Gawn will attempt to overcome the prejudice against tall people with long beards, Dusty will attempt to win again after his kidnapping on Friday night, and Tom Mitchell will collect the medal, then handball it off to a teammate for a cheap disposal.
Up First- The Red Carpet!
19:30- Oh shit it's Hamish and... 'Abbey Gelmi', who is Herb Elliott's granddaughter
19:31- Also making an appearance are Jimmy and Nadia Bartel, who will have to carry a bun in the oven
19:33- Big Boner Brown in the Vegan suit!
19:35- Tex trying to speak English as he arrives at Crown
19:37- Abbey talking about how someone told her it was hard to work with children and animals... unfortunately, she ended with a combination of both tonight.
19:41- Channel 7 doing a feature on Jerri Jones getting ready for the night... hang on, doesn't she own the Dallas Cowboys
19:45- Jimmy has the enthusiasm of a dried raisin.
19:50- Wow look at all these things at Crown you'll never eat
19:53- And here comes Big Rough, former winner of the Punching Above His Weight Award
19:56- Big Bud here with Jacinta, rocking the pedo 'stache
20:01- And we can now cross over to Perth, where the Eagles are arriving at Crown Perth to hit the tables
20:03- If JJ's dunny brush head wasn't a standout, his outfit with Logan will take the honours
20:07- Oh look, it's BetEasy. Get fucked
20:12- Joel Selwood ducks into Crown... no free kick there
20:14- Whoever asked Tom Mitchell about his electricity provider in the thread, you have won!
And to call us through tonight's tedious action, we've got the voice of The 'Bool, Rick McIntosh!
Alright Bruce, fuck off and let's get this underway
20:22- Crippa with a steady beginning out of the gates, Titch going straight to the front!
20:25- Maximum Gawnage nowhere to be seen, he's right out the back, as Titch starts with two-BOGs!
20:26- S.Hurn, 3 Votes
20:29- Hey gang, remember when Port were the only unbeaten team after Round 3? That's coming up next
20:34- No Undie Grundy on the board, Maximum Gawnage is on the board!
20:35- Titch with another 3 vote game- That lead is huge 3 rounds in!
20:36- Dusty with his first BOG, he's still there, as is Paaaaarker
20:40- Fyfe with some stellar performances early but he can't win
20:40- Sidebottom putting himself in the hunt drawing level with Titch
20:44- There's a loose horse going round the field, it appears to be Clive Palmer
20:50- Titch strides back into the lead again, as Maximum Gawnage gets another BOG!
20:52- WRAP IT UP
20:53- Desk Man getting amongst the early votes, as Fyfe goes into the lead before the wheels fall off
20:55- A break now as we get set for GOAL OF THE YEAR!
21:00- Barnesy is a top cunt
21:01- And the winner of the Snag of the Year is...
JACK HIGGINS? - What a fucked award this is, giving throws goal of the year
21:04- What a crazy round this was, Ronke showed up and Carlton won a game
21:05- Crippa gets a BOG and keeps himself in the race, Macrae is there as well
21:08- J.Darling- 3 Votes
21:14- The late Jimmy Stynes giving Max Gawn his jumper in 2011, saying he was different. What a great call by Dublin Jim
21:17- And on that note, it's time for the Jim Stynes Community Leadership Award, which goes to:
21:24- Dees players stealing votes off Maximum Gawnage
21:25- Coming up soon- MARK OF THE YEAR!
21:31- Wait a minute, that's Daisy's music!
21:34- And Titch goes back into the lead, but Sidebottom responds!
21:38- And now a tribute to the retiring players from the Silk- PLEASE COME BACK JUNIOR
Just look at some of the names gone from the game this year- Vickery, Vince, Waite, Mr Megan Gale
21:49- FINALLY, MARK OF THE YEAR TIME! And the winner is:
ISAAC HEENEY! - No arguments here, it was the hang time that won it!
21:54- Titch going back to within a vote of Sidebottom
21:55- Oh look at that, it's BetEasy. again.
22:01- Level between Titch and Sidebottom!
22:06- Lol Harry Taylor missed after the siren
22:07- And Titch with a 2 vote game has taken the lead!
22:17- Another 3 vote game for Hipwood- That one's for Speer
22:18- And Sidebottom responds to the whip! back into the lead!
22:26- They're starting to round the turn for home- It's Titch vs Rusty Sidebottom!
22:26- Hahahaha, remember when Sydney lost to the Gold Coast
22:28- Titch gets another BOG to go back into the lead, while Pendlebury gets BOG for hitting a pigeon with a bounce
22:33- Yer a wizard, Gary- The most Brownlow votes ever
22:45 Not bad for Sydney's fifth best midfielder... ahahahaha
22:47- Going over the minors, Sidebottom ran 2nd, Gus Brayshaw has snuck up on everyone to run 3rd, Crippa and Maximum Gawnage have dead heated for 4th place, and the Desk Man and Dusty have run equal 6th.
1st- Tom Mitchell - 28 votes
2nd- Steele Sidebottom - 24 votes
3rd- Angus Brayshaw - 21 votes
D/H 4th- Max Gawn , Patrick Cripps - 20 votes
22:54- Unfortunately, Tom's prize is having Bruce 'Creepy Uncle' McAvaney ask him questions about his childhood.
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Crown's unsavoury business links: how Australia's casino got tied up with criminals

This is the best tl;dr I could make, original reduced by 94%. (I'm a bot)
The leaked Crown data includes tax receipts showing the casino company paid tens of millions of dollars per year to "Sub junkets" run by Zhou's associates and agents - their percentage cut of the gaming turnover of the VIPs from the Chinese mainland that Zhou's junket has brought to Crown's casinos in Perth and Melbourne.
Three of Zhou's accomplices were jailed for three years each in one case but, rather than face the justice system for "Misappropriating huge amounts of money Zhou absconded abroad" the filing states.
The Crown files suggest Zhou himself was not at Crown's Perth or Melbourne casinos, but instead overseeing the work of his "Sub-junkets" or "Chinatown reps".
In one leaked email, Crown staff prepare to vouch to Australian visa officials about a high roller on the basis that he was "Referred by Crown VVIP Mr Zhou" and because "Crown staff has known Mr Zhou [for] more than 10 years".
In another chain of emails, Crown staff arrange a visa for a "Friend of our VVIP Mr Zhou" because the man "Would like to attend Mr Zhou birthday party in Australia".
The precise nature of the trip, and of Zhou's relationship with the United Front and the President's cousin, remain shrouded in secrecy, and until now, Zhou continues his life in his luxury Melbourne home, untouched by law enforcement.
Summary Source | FAQ | Feedback | Top keywords: Zhou#1 Crown#2 Chinese#3 junket#4 Australia#5
Post found in /worldnews.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
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