May 11, 2008

Bill Ralston: Stormy Conditions Ahead

Bill Ralston has a gloomier view of the economy than we do.

the majority of mortgage-belt New Zealanders, who languish largely ignored in the hard-pressed middle-income bracket, have little hope of relief. The Government's ill-conceived emissions trading scheme is set to soak billions of dollars out of households and small businesses and large corporations and agriculture will get a free ride for many years.

This has been a brilliant fair-weather Government, cruising through calm economic times. Conditions have changed yet it seems incapable of changing course. Batten down the hatches, guys, it can only get worse.

The difference may be that he still thinks that the Government is going to introduce an emissions trading regime. We can't see this happening for two to three years. We do agree with Bill that the recent economic data supports the case for an early easing of interest rates by the Reserve Bank.