Introduction. One of the important constraints on tax reform in Australia is widespread ignorance about notions of tax incidence. A mistaken theory of tax incidence – the “flypaper theory” – suggests that taxes impact on those groups that they are directly levied on. So, payroll taxes and superannuation levies fall on the companies they are levied on.
Articles from Harry Clarke
The move by Chinese interests to purchase 1.3% of Australia (the Kidman properties) for $300m is against Australia’s economic and political interests. The land will be used by the Chinese to pursue pastoral activities in Australia using imported Chinese capital resources and, at least down the line, Chinese workers.
An interesting debate on superannuation was initiated in the AFR a few days back by Geoff Carmody. His argument was that the current system of superannuation should be scrapped and replaced by an age pension entitlement for all.
This Age journalist complains about the $18 cost of his son’s cross town journeys to visit his girlfriend. His diagnosis of the problem is, however, wrong. The costs of using CityLink in Melbourne are based on guaranteeing a secure profit for Transurban. The objective is cost-recovery with a margin.
I always told my economics students that while retailers often did not know the elasticity of demand for their products – how sensitive demands are to prices – they could easily infer this information by experimenting with price variations.
I posted this on FaceBook on 27th August, 2015 but current events in world equity markets invite a repost and some further comments. Quote:
“There is hysteria over the alleged “China slowdown”. 7% growth in an economy that has been growing at 8-10% for a decade is substantial growth.
Do the arithmetic.
Draft of a book review of Gernot Wagner & Martin L. Weitzman, Climate Shock: The economic Consequences of a Hotter Planet, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 2015. Comments very welcome.