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IndyWatch Australian Economic News Feed was generated at Australian News IndyWatch.

Tuesday, 02 February

14:29

Tesla Energy in major Australian hiring push as Powerwall sales take off Renew Economy

Tesla Energy has launched major recruitment drive in Australia to build scale to support soaring demand for its Powerwall battery.

14:27

“State of transition” Oil oversupply, shale bankruptcies, gas leaks, and a whiff of securities fraud Renew Economy

The great global energy transition will play out in countless small dramas. But reminders of the over-arching global narrative, that we are in a race against time, are remorseless.

14:26

Next-generation utility programs: The emergence of a “negawatt” market Renew Economy

California’s recently passed Senate Bill shows a remarkable change in how the state evaluates energy efficiency. Say hello to the "negawatt."

14:24

Royal Society for Protection of Birds install new wind turbine at HQ Renew Economy

RSPB in the UK last week announced a renewable energy project for the charity to offset its contributions to climate change.

14:23

Southern California utilities to deploy 5,000 EV chargers in first-of-their-kind pilots Renew Economy

The country’s biggest rate-based rollout of EV chargers targets apartments, commercial parking and grid integration.

14:23

Four reasons electric vehicle sales will surge – Goldman Sachs Renew Economy

Goldman Sachs analysts have predicted that electric vehicle sales could grow from 3% of the global auto market today to 26% by 2025. Here's how.

11:02

Was the renewables industry better off under Abbott than Turnbull? Renew Economy

The new parliament session has begun, and little has changed. Large scale renewables remain at a standstill and the Coalition government is still pushing for the removal of CEFC, ARENA, and the Climate Change Authority. Has anything changed under Malcolm Turnbull?

08:48

The ECB could stand on its head and not have much impact Bill Mitchell – billy blog

As the Bank of Japan began its hopeless quest to stimulate growth with negative interest rates (see my blog yesterday – The folly of negative interest rates on bank reserves), the latest data from the ECB came out on lending to households and non-financial institutions. It tells an interesting story. The story has to be framed within the knowledge that oil prices have now fallen by some 77 per cent. But the major factor that is not usually mentioned when commentators talk about ECB policy changes and the likely impacts is the on-going and manic fiscal austerity in the Eurozone, which puts the whole region in a recession-type straitjacket, where monetary policy changes, weak in impact at best, have little hope of achieving anything positive. The logic of the reliance on monetary policy for counter-stabilisation is also built on a failure to understand what drives the economic cycle. The belief that banks will suddenly lend just because the central bank imposes a tax on their reserve deposits (negative interest rates) or offers them cheap loans to on-lend to households and firms is misplaced. Banks do not loan out their reserves and firms will not borrow from banks no matter how cheap the money is if there are no profitable opportunities to pursue. It is time the authorities abandoned their neo-liberal myths and got real. The Eurozone needs a massive fiscal expansion and it needed it 7 or 8 years ago. The ECB is the only institution in the flawed system that can provide the financial resources to make that happen and it could, with Brussels approval, bypass the ‘no bailout’ clauses in the Treaty to make that happen. It won’t, and the Eurozone will muddle on with increased poverty rates and rising social instability. What folly!

According to the US Energy Information Administration data on –...

Monday, 01 February

15:04

The folly of negative interest rates on bank reserves Bill Mitchell – billy blog

On Friday (January 29, 2016), the Bank of Japan issued a seven-page document – Introduction of “Quantitative and Qualitative Monetary Easing with a Negative Interest Rate” – which left me confounded. Do they actually know what they are doing or not? For years, the liquidity management conducted by the operations desk at the Bank has been impeccable, in the sense that they have maintained near zero interest rates in the face of growing fiscal deficits. There was always some doubt when they were the early users of quantitative easing which many claimed was to provide the banks with more reserves so that they would increase their lending to the private domestic sector in order to stimulate growth, after many years of rather moderate real performance to say the least. Of course, banks are not reserve constrained in their lending so the the only way that this aspect of ‘non-conventional’ monetary policy would be stimulatory would be if investment and purchasers of consumer durable were motivated to borrow at the lower interest rates that the asset swap (bonds for reserves) generated. The evidence is that the stimulus impact has been low and that there are many other factors other than falling interest rates governing whether borrowers will approach their banks for loans. In their latest announcement, the logic appears to be that by reducing reserves they will induce banks to lend more. Go figure that one out!

The official announcement said the Bank:

1. Decided to introduce “Quantitative and Qualitative Monetary Easing (QQE) with a Negative Interest Rate” in order to achieve the price stability target of 2 percent at the earliest possible time.”

2. “The Bank will apply a negative interest rate of minus 0.1 percent to current accounts that financial institutions hold at the Ban...

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