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, June 24, 2011

One of the finest RBA speeches ever--Phil Lowe's war on inflation

This is just a ripping and brutally honest speech. Exactly what I expected too. The RBA makes the case for an intense and vigilant campaign against future inflation pressures. Just as critically, Phil concedes that the RBA underestimated the strength of the inflationary pulse in the late 2000s, which remains something of a puzzle, and highlights that the RBA's models may once again underestimate a non-linear increase in core inflation in the future given the complexity of the underlying return generating processes. Note also, for the pedants, that RBA is no longer talking about inflation averaging 2.5% pa since the advent of its regime, as I have long argued here. Phil is very frank in acknowledging the structural increase in core inflation during the 2000s, and seeking to objectively explain it. Most significantly, most of Phil's explanations are variables that could reappear again in the next inflationary cycle...As a final comment, Phil makes it clear that this RBA has a single, albeit flexibly framed, objective, which is price stability.