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."

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Oz's male jobless rate fell from 5.1% in August to 4.7% in December 2011

Just saw this from Ricardian Ambivalence, who is an experienced market participant. He makes the point, which I've not seen elsewhere, that the main game is the male unemployment rate, which has actually been falling. Worth a read:

Zooming out, the only thing that this survey is really designed to do is to measure the unemployment rate. That has been steady at around 5.25% for a while now.

Though the data quality is poorer as we split the sample, it is probably worth doing so in the case of the male full time unemployment rate. The world being what it is, the male full time unemployment rate is still the most economically significant sub-component.

This rate fell 10bps to 4.7% in December. It is down 40bps from a peak of 5.1% in August.

On balance, the Australian labour market is steady – with early hints of firming.

This report neither makes nor breaks the case for a Feb cut – we will have to wait and see Q4’11 CPI (out 25 Jan) to see about that.