Products – The Centre for Independent Studies

The Economic Challenge of Covid-19

Robert Carling
08 July 2020 | PP32
The Economic Challenge of Covid-19

Even before the Covid-19 pandemic struck, the Australian economy was under-performing its potential and in need of reinvigoration. Economic growth in per capita terms had slowed to a crawl and business investment and productivity growth were depressed. Policy changes that were previously desirable have now been rendered crucial by the pandemic. The shock to the economic system since March has been so profound that it has not only led to the deepest recession since the Second World War but will also do long-lasting damage to employment, unemployment and productive capacity. The recovery will inevitably be measured in years, but the right policies can speed it up. Emergency support measures, fiscal stimulus and increased government borrowing have their limits and at most can only help in the short-term. The emphasis of economic policy will need to transition to structural reforms such as industrial relations, deregulation and tax reform. Properly designed, these will support job creation in the short-term while simultaneously contributing to higher productivity growth in the longer term. Short-term results aside, a comprehensive reform agenda offers the best prospects for a sustained recovery that lifts the economy back to potential in the medium term and enhances that potential in the longer term.

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Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) is a supposedly new macroeconomic paradigm, but it is essentially a reprise of 1930s Keynesian economics. Its central premise — that countries which can borrow in their own currencies should not worry about government deficits and can finance as much government spending as they want — is deeply flawed, yet it has political appeal and has…

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Does high-rise development damage neighbourhood character?
Peter Tulip, Zachary Lanigan
29 April 2021 | PP40

Local residents often oppose new apartment buildings on the grounds that they would harm neighbourhood character. This paper suggests these concerns are overstated. The paper examines several examples of high-rise development in Sydney: Chatswood, Forest Lodge, Green Square, Liverpool and Turrella. If these developments harmed neighbourhood character, as local residents often claim, nearby house prices should fall. But that does…

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22 April 2021 | PP39

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08 April 2021 | PP38

China’s unprecedented trade campaign against Australia is a case study in economic coercion for geopolitical purposes. Its aim is twofold: to bend Canberra to Beijing’s will and to decouple it from the US alliance system. Australia has withstood such pressure to date, but needs American support. This paper argues that the Biden Administration should lead in helping Australia and other…

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