Thursday, June 28

Household finances

Today the ABS released the March quarter financial accounts. My favourite table in this series is the household sector.

Net household financial wealth is still down on its pre-GFC highs.

Housholds are continuing to be cautious with their assets (favouring cash depositis over shares). Although, this trend might be turning a corner.

No surprises on the liabilies side.

Monday, June 25

Housing interest rate reductions showing up in the data

This chart shows the May data for housing loans. Of the five series for housing interest rates provided by the RBA in their table F5, I have selected three that give a feel for the range. The green line is the mortgage manager's basic variable rate (typically the lowest rate). The red line is the bank three-year fixed term rate. The blue line is the bank standard variable rate (typically the highest rate, one which I assume very few people pay). The bank discounted rate currently sites 30 basis points above the mortgage manager basic rate.

The grey line is the RBA's official intertest rate. Of note, the May cut in official interest rates was not fully passed on.

The story over the longer run is as follows.

The spread between the official interest rates and what you pay for a housing loan, while not at record levels is moving towards the higher end of its 20 year range ...

Sunday, June 24

Dwelling unit commencements

This week the ABS released its latest quarterly print for dwelling unit commencements. All the trends are down (except NT). NSW appears to be in a particularly deep hole by historical standards.

Wednesday, June 20

Settle petal

My "market nerves" indicator is settling down a bit. We have had a good Greek election. Spanish banks have been re-hydrated. Normal boom services will resume shortly.

DEEWR leading indicator

DEEWR’s Monthly Leading Indicator of Employment has fallen for the sixth consecutive month in June 2012. This confirms that employment is likely to continue to grow more slowly than its long-term trend rate of 1.7 per cent per year in coming months. In comparison, cyclical employment has fallen for sixteen consecutive months.

Monday, June 18

SUV Heaven

The latest motor vehicle sales data from the ABS has stellar through the year growth in SUV sales. Other vehicle sales appear flat in trend terms. (And to be fair, the seasonally adjusted TTY growth data could be overstating things a little given the production slump following the March 2011 Japanese tsunami).

Sunday, June 17

Income distribution

While I understood that the GFC had affected household wealth, I had not realised that the GFC had also affected household income for all but the poorest households. Note: the data in the following charts is for financial years, which I have plotted as a point in the middle of the financial year. Data is only available for a selection of years.

And just for contrast, attached is a look at the personal (rather than household) income distribution from the 2009-10 financial year. The chart is for total income rather than taxable income. It covers around 12.4 million tax form lodgers. Of note, while some 9.2 per cent of tax form lodgers have a total income of less than $6001; around 26.6 per cent have a taxable income less than this amount.

The 25th percentile was in the $15,001-$20,000 income bin. The 50th percentile was in the $35,001-$40,000 income bin. The 75th percentile was in the $60,001-$70,000 income bin. The 90th percentile was in the $90,001-$100,000 income bin. 97 per cent of individual tax form lodgers earnt less than $150,000 in 2009-10.

Saturday, June 16

Australia's changing labour market

A week ago I looked at Australia's changing economy by industry sector. Today I am using the same trick to look at Australia's changing labour market by industry sector. The data for this animation comes from the ABS' quarterly labour force survey for the quarters endings in November 1984 through to May 2012.

As with the previous presentation, the first and last slide follow to enable easy comparison.

Friday, June 15

Unemployment rate by age cohort

A couple of charts from the more detailed monthly labour force data released yesterday ...

Quarterly employment charts

Some charts from yesterday's quarterly employment data looking at the number employed by industry sector ... We will start with the summary charts of the growth in the number employed in each sector.

The percentage growth charts are in terms of the size of each industry sector ...