The author has been described by News Ltd as an "iconoclast", "Svengali", a pollie's "economist muse", and "pungently accurate". Fairfax says he is a "Renaissance man" and "one of Australia’s most respected analysts." Stephen Koukoulas concludes that he is "85% right", and "would make a great Opposition leader." Terry McCrann claims the author thinks "‘nuance’ is a trendy village in the south of France", but can be "scintillating" when he thinks "clearly". The ACTU reckons he’s "an enigma wrapped in a Bloomberg terminal, wrapped in some apparently well-honed abs."

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

ACTU young Turk Matt Cowgill pummels Oz's labour rigidity thesis

Matty Cowgill, who I must say is a terribly nice guy, does a decent job of presenting the other side of the story on the labour market rigidities that some claim have emerged with the departure of the Coalition from government. I guess the two additional anecdotes that don't gel so well with Matty's arguments are (a) the RBA Governor's recent testimony to Parliament that business liaison suggested the new workplace laws had created significant administration problems, and (b) the curious case of the post-GFC lower-hours-worked data, which remains well below its pre-crisis levels. There are many possible explanations for this latter phenomenon, which are beyond the scope of this post.