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."

Friday, April 8, 2011

RBA Governor deserves every cent he gets...

Wayne Swan has criticised Glenn Stevens's pay packet, which is a little over $1m pa. Frankly speaking, Glenn deserves every cent he gets. First, he has demonstrated around three decades worth of (non-commercial) loyalty to this institution. Second, his financial opportunity cost is massive, and probably about 10x that amount. Andrew Mohl, a former RBA economist, went on to become CEO of AMP. Jillian Broadbent, another ex RBA economist, ran big chunks of Bankers Trust during the 1980s and 1990s. David Morgan, once 2iC at the Commonwealth Treasury, went on to become CEO of Westpac. Ted Evans, the former Treasury Secretary, is currently Chairman of Westpac. John Fraser, another former senior Treasury economist, was global CEO of UBS Asset Management. And these are just the names I can bash out off the top of my head. All of these guys would have pulled in multiples of what Stevens' earns at the RBA. Guy Debelle and Phil Lowe are also sorely underpaid, as both would do very well in the private sector. As I have actually written at length before, the problem here is that top politicians and public servants are not paid nearly enough. Wayne Swan should focus on redressing this imbalance so that we can attract better talent into government.