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House Price Inflation

Written By: - Date published: 10:58 am, May 6th, 2012 - 59 comments
Categories: business, capital gains, debt / deficit, Economy - Tags: , ,

It is a conventional economics axiom that increasing the money supply without a concomitant increase in production causes inflation.

In the last thirty five years we have had low inflation in all, except two, commodities. Firstly, Land , and thence housing and farm prices. (The other commodity is food).

This is driven by private Banking’s incentive to print money. The more money they supply the more interest they can make. Unfortunately, there is also a strong natural incentive to lend only on solid security, such as land and buildings. Banks know better than anyone the inherent insecurity and instability of financial instruments, including shares.

Mortgage law in most Western countries favours lending on land. Unlike other investments, or lending, if the value of the security, land, goes down, the borrower is still liable for the full amount of the loan and interest. The bank is indemnified against loss. For example, in New Zealand, the bank has priority over all other creditors, including contractors.

Lending on business and other assets does not offer the same security. The bank has to wait in line with other creditors and, normally, cannot continue claims in excess of their proportion of the sale.

Banks, while reluctant to risk their own money, are happy to risk small savers investments. Our pension funds, bank deposits and savings.

These schemes, whether shares, derivatives, hedge funds or other financial instruments are designed so that banks can gamble with our money. Win or lose they always get a cut. Losses come out of our pensions and other savings. Or, if they really stuff it up, taxpayers are expected to borrow more from them to pay for it. “The bailout”.

De-regulation of banking has removed almost all constraints on lending and the amount of wealth banks can take. The total monetary value of financial instruments and debt is now so great that a crash, or super inflation, is inevitable if it is ever fully spent on real production. Does anyone really think that infinitely compounding interest is possible in a world with finite resources?

While we lose our savings, houses and farms, bankers still get richer.

Given the difficulty in obtaining bank finance without land as security, favourable tax treatments in (Western countries for homeowners, landowners and farmers ), incentives for banks to avoid risk and the risks inherent in other investment (The inevitable crash of Banker’s ponzi schemes and the likely devaluation of currency denominated investments) it is not surprising that investors prefer land. The Chinese Government buying up land worldwide with US dollars, before they become worthless, is only a minor example.

Hence land prices rising much faster than wages.

Our economy, along with most other Western economies has been skewed by banks following their own self interest. The “invisible hand” has failed..

KJT

59 comments on “House Price Inflation”

  1. peter 1

    And in Godzone our interest payments and bank profits go off-shore for the benefit of others. We are already tenants in our own country, might just as well sell everything off.

  2. Richard 2

    Well, this post is pretty incoherent, and generally factually incorrect.

    Land isn’t, as claimed, treated differently than other investments, it is merely a highly common form of security interest. Other such interests, like Personal Property Security Interests also carry similar priority rules. Further, the presence of the security is the very thing that allows you to borrow 500k on a 50k salary and only pay 6% interest. Take that away, and take away any dreams of home ownership for the middle class.

    Blaming issues of housing affordability on easy access to credit is just bizarre.

    • KJT 2.1

      Bollocks. Try getting business finance without land as security.

      • muzza 2.1.1

        I’m sorry , Sir/Madam, do you have any collateral which the bank could use as security to underwrite any loan for your business.

        Oh, well unfortunately the bank will not be able to provide an undsecured loan, as the risk profile is not in line with bank policy!

        Good day!

  3. Johnm 3

    The early 80s I could easily buy a 3 bedroom house for $32,000.00 I was on a salary of $10,000.00 a year! That house was on a large section and stood alone. Since then the banks have lent a lot of fiat interest bearing money to get rich capital gains housing speculators on a self propelled upward market and real estate sales have cashed in as well. Using a vital social asset at once affordable prices has been turned into a get rich scheme for kiwis with existing income and assets to act as collateral.

    Nats and Labour have refused to stop this rort at the expense of younger kiwi couples ’cause they’re in it as well! By levying a Capital gains Tax of say 60%. Now young kiwis can’t buy their own homes ’cause of the greedies who have troughed in for wealth gains. Easy credit from foreign banks enabled this gross scandal and they have cashed in with the additional interest charged on the principal.

    Just another Ponzi scheme exploiting the fact people must live in shelter.

  4. Nick K 4

    So the problem with housing affordability is mortgages? As Richard said, bizarre.

    • KJT 4.1

      Are you actually trying to tell me that the availability of money has no effect on prices?

      • Nick K 4.1.1

        No. The availablity of money (cheap money) has *an* impact. It’s not the sole reason. Supply is another big factor, which we are seeing now as a result of developers being bankrupt and finance companies going under.

  5. Draco T Bastard 5

    Unlike other investments, or lending, if the value of the security, land, goes down, the borrower is still liable for the full amount of the loan and interest. The bank is indemnified against loss.

    Such laws are systemic to modern capitalism and puts the lie to the great risk, great reward BS that is peddled as the reason some people are rich. The wealthiest people take almost no risk as they’re protected against loss by the government. This needs to change.

    I’ve been thinking about this specifically in regards to mortgages, that I think that nobody should ever be at risk of losing their homes and that whenever you loan someone money you’re taking the risk that you’re not going to get it back. Thus I have come to the conclusion that we need a law that says something like:
    1.) The mortgage is for a fixed term
    2.) Each payment is for the agreed upon amount or 20% of income, which ever is the lesser

    This puts the risk back on the bank where it’s supposed to be.

    Would also need to ban foreign ownership so that vast amounts of cheaper foreign money don’t push the prices here up.

    • KJT 5.1

      I would rather leave out banks entirely. The lender is the democratic polity.
      Private entities should not have unregulated control over money supply.

      At this stage that is the Government as the “peoples representative”. A sarcastic thing to say at present, which is why we need democracy.

      I agree on foreign ownership. Foreign buyers with unlimited cheap US dollars can easily outbid any New Zealander.

      Some countries and States do have public banks.

      In the 30’s in NZ, public banking and issue of finance was a big factor in our early exit from the depression.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        I would rather leave out banks entirely.

        So would I but I think that such a policy would have the private banks running for the hills as they’d pretty much be guaranteed to take a loss.

        Private entities should not have unregulated control over money supply.

        Agreed. In fact, the only money available should be what the government spends into the economy. Banks and finance companies would only be able to loan out that which has been loaned to them for that purpose. The right won’t like that though as it would prove that the community is the source of wealth and not the rich as they like to believe.

        • Leverett 5.1.1.1

          Right – so the risk of default is shouldered squarely by the banks. Two alternative paths spring to mind:

          The first is that bank’s go out of business, or at least cease lending to those of us without huge incomes or enormous estates. Banks might continue to lend to landlords, of course, because if they default the mortgage isn’t securing a home but a business asset. As a coeval, land prices fall because there are less buyers but given they can’t access lending, aspirant folk become less able to purchase property and all the land ultimately ends up being owned big business and big government.

          The second is that the state gets in the business of lending on property on the terms suggested. With no risk of foreclosure for default more people buy property, knowing that there is no risk of bankruptcy or eviction as a result of default – the costs of default being socialised. This makes credit ‘cheaper’ and consequently increases demand – in the same way that student lending increased following interest write-off legislation. Land prices greatly inflate in line with established economic principles. The government takes massive losses as homebuyers default with the crown unable to realise its security. Housing losses consume a huge proportion of the state budget.

          I am not saying the current world of banking and finance is in great shape but am genuinely interested in what is wrong with the foregoing analysis. Are there any examples of such schemes working well in the real world or is such a scheme based only on a priori reasoning?

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.1.1

            It’s a question of artificial restrictions. The method used ATM is interest rates and that doesn’t actually work as the collapsing bubble proves. The other method involves regulation about where houses can be built (which we already have) and I’d suggest another couple of restrictions – you can only have one mortgage, it can only be applied to one house and you can only update it once every ten years. Also I’d probably get rid of the OCR and the idea of the government being the Lender of Last Resort.

            Yes it will be the government making mortgages available (at 0% interest) and more people will buy but there’s still a limit to the number of people and thus the number of houses wanted. Owning multiple homes so as to live off the rental income (be a professional bludger) would not be viable. On the positive side, all our people will be decently housed.

            As for the loss being socialised – What loss? The government creates the money to enable the necessary distribution of resources and then destroys it through mortgage repayments and taxes.

            The market doesn’t work without serious regulation and the present system of limited regulation only works to make a few people rich and everyone else dependent upon them. I call such a set up dictatorship.

            • Leverett 5.1.1.1.1.1

              I agree that, for whatever reasons, the world of finance isn’t going gangbusters at the moment and desperately needs correction. To summarise your proposal, however:

              – Ban all obligations mortgages on houses;
              – Ban repayments over 20% of the borrowers’ income for any lending to purchase houses;
              – Ban mortgagee sales over houses where the owner is in occupation;
              – Ban second mortgages on houses;
              – Ban the charging of interest on finance to buy a house;
              – Ban refinancing of home loans more than once a decade;
              – Ban the ownership of multiple houses; and
              – More restrictions on where houses can be built.

              The suggested result of these law changes isn’t that the housing stock will deteriorate and decline – or completely monopolised, but somehow that “all our people will be decently housed”.

              Under the present, imperfect system, my partner and I were able to scrimp and save for a few years to scratch together a deposit. We convinced the bank that we would be able to pay back its shareholders money with interest – showing that we would be a good investment. We are thinking of fixing my rates at some point in the next 6 months but haven’t decided yet.

              We had to move to the provinces to be able to afford a house and I worry about hard times a bit. We pay a little bit each month for life-insurance and mortgage interruption insurance. It means that we rent movies rather than go to the cinema, pack lunches and entertain friends at home rather than frequent cafes – which is sometimes frustrating. We think the arrangement is mutually beneficial because we are starting to build up a bit of equity in the land instead of paying most of our income to a landlord.

              It just seems a little weird that you would call that a dictatorship. In actual fact, you want to intervene in that mutually agreed exchange and dictate terms that no commerical party would agree to. Is there a point where you believe that there are intolerable restrictions on the right to enter into free contracts? I assume you’re not a full blown state-socialist, right?

              Under your vision, the only lender would be the state – but under such circumstances that somehow everybody is ‘taking’ from the system and, in the final analysis, nobody is paying in. There is no risk of penury if I default and no risk of losing my family’s shelter if I don’t work hard to create value for others. So once your ensconsed, why work?

              Again – has that alternative ever been tried succesfully anywhere?

              • Draco T Bastard

                Ban all obligations mortgages on houses;

                Didn’t do that as people would still be required to pay up to 20% of their income.

                Ban the charging of interest on finance to buy a house;

                I didn’t ban it at all. You could still go out and pay interest if you so desire as I’m sure there will be plenty of people willing to take money from you. It’s more that I set up conditions that prevent it from happening due to rational self-interest.

                Ban second mortgages on houses;

                Why would you want, or need, a second mortgage?

                Ban refinancing of home loans more than once a decade;

                Yep, good reason for that – it prevents housing bubbles like the one that just helped trip the world into recession.

                More restrictions on where houses can be built.

                Most definitely as urban sprawl is a) destructive of the environment, b) takes away land that could be used for better purposes (leaving it in it’s natural state is a better purpose) and c) damned expensive to maintain.

                The suggested result of these law changes isn’t that the housing stock will deteriorate and decline – or completely monopolised, but somehow that “all our people will be decently housed”.

                Yep, because all the necessary housing would actually be built.

                It just seems a little weird that you would call that a dictatorship.

                Being dependent upon an individuals whim is being in a position that you cannot govern yourself.

                So once your ensconsed, why work?

                Because it provides purpose.

                Again – has that alternative ever been tried succesfully anywhere?

                Looking to the past for solutions for the now and the future can only result in failure. That said, there’s the 1st Labour Government to look to.

  6. Pete 6

    There is sound social policy behind the relatively easy credit for homebuyers. Home ownership means people are more rooted in their communities, they take better care of their property and there’s a general desire to see a community improve. I’m not saying communities made up of rented properties don’t have their own strength – the student quarter here in Dunedin is a particularly vibrant (although it is by nature transient).

    I think we are witnessing one unintended consequence of the growth of women’s employment since the 1970s. Dual income households are now the norm rather than stay-at-home mums. That money sloshing around pushes prices up.

    Secondly, There’s also regional variations. I think what is playing out is the result of so much of the economy being centered on Auckland. There is so much more demand there and the market really is a different beast compared to the rest of the country. I’m lucky enough to be making the average income, but as a single person I would not have been able to buy a house had I stayed in Wellington. Here in Dunedin I’ve just moved into my own (modest) house after moving down south to work at the university.

    Edit: and I had help to do that too – I saved my deposit through Kiwisaver, so I used those employer contributions and the first home deposit subsidy from Housing NZ.

    • kiwi_prometheus 6.1

      “There is sound social policy behind the relatively easy credit for homebuyers.”

      The cheap credit boom leading up to the GFC was about a record breaking speculative bubble not “sound social policy”. And it has burst big time.

      USA house prices are down around 40% in the last 5 years. Australia tanking the last 2 years.

      NZ is sure to follow.

      And to think history’s ( and NZs ) greatest credit bubble occurred under Labour’s command.

      Shows how ideologically bankrupt the Left is with its Neo Classical Economics Lite, and the stench of stale cat pee hanging around it thanks to Rad Fem felix types.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1

        Labour is of the right, neo-liberalism is of the right, and on top of that the political parties just do what they’re told to by the banksters.

    • Carol 6.2

      There is sound social policy behind the relatively easy credit for homebuyers. Home ownership means people are more rooted in their communities, they take better care of their property and there’s a general desire to see a community improve. I’m not saying communities made up of rented properties don’t have their own strength – the student quarter here in Dunedin is a particularly vibrant (although it is by nature transient).

      Actually, I think that one of the reasons the elite pushes home buying for all (apart from the fact that the people at the top get rich off it all while those at the bottom are kept in an insecure state), is that it keeps people busy with their house etc, so they are less likely to become highly critical of the elite…. ie it keeps them from rioting in the streets, because they are locked into paying for, maintaining and protecting their homes.

      This is one of the main reasons I’ve never been interested in owning my own home. Since I was quite young I’ve always thought it was a bit of a con.

      Lifetime renter, me. Still can’t get excited about real estate, and I have a strong sense of historical and social links to my community without it. Affordable housing should be readily available for all, without a need to buy, IMO. And if society society was organised so that accommodation was easily available, there would be other things to bind people to community and to develop a sense of a social consciousness.

  7. Afewknowthetruth 7

    In the last thirty five years we have had low inflation in all, except two, commodities. Firstly, Land , and thence housing and farm prices. (The other commodity is food)

    What a load of crap.

    Oil is currently 4 times the price it was in the early 2000s ,and is over 5 times the price it was in the 1990s. And that is after severe demand destruction has clobbered the market, due to numerous economies implodinging

    And gold is around six-and-a-half times the price it was 15 years ago.

    My decision to participate in TS discussions only on rare occasions is validated.

    • KJT 7.1

      You are right. Should have thought of energy also.

      Same drivers though.

      Don’t agree Gold is a commodity.

      I think you also agree it is all likely to collapse in a heap when it hits against resource constraints.

      • Lanthanide 7.1.1

        Compared to historical prices, food is also still very very cheap.

        • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1

          According to Grantham in the last 10 years commodity prices have recovered all the price drops of the last 150 years.

        • KJT 7.1.1.2

          It may well be, but it has been rising steeply against median incomes.

          The rising gap between prices for necessities, and incomes, and the drivers for the gap, is our concern here.

  8. Reagan Cline 8

    “the inherent insecurity and instability of financial instruments including shares” Not sure that shares are “a financial instrument” but whatever – there are graphs that show shares long term outperform all other investemnt classes. There is short and medium term volatility in all investments.

    “Does anyone really think that an infinitely compounding interest is possible in a world with finite resources ?” No, if the resources bought and sold for profit are finite.

    The service part of the economy has grown hugely in NZ and is not limited by the material resources I think you are referring to.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      there are graphs that show shares long term outperform all other investemnt classes.

      Graphs of the past. Specifically of a past where the focus of the economy was on real industries and real profits, during a time of increasing resource and energy availability.

      Anyways, financial instruments such as shares are not the place to put capital now. Real productive assets and physical precious metals are where you need to be.

      • Reagan Cline 8.1.1

        I’m feeling greedy and a little afraid now CV. What “real productive assets” should I put my savings into ? Mighty River Power maybe ?

        • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.1

          Cheap, easy to fill rental properties, economically priced farm land, solidly revenue generating small businesses, and yes the power generators being hawked off.

    • KJT 8.2

      Those that deal in shares like to repeat that “on average, shares outperform all other asset classes”.

      While true, in that the total share market has risen faster than any other investment assets, this applies only to the sharemarket as a whole.

      As an individual investment the returns are far more mixed.

      For example. If you picked a random basket of shares in different enterprises 25 years ago, there is a better than even chance you would have made a loss.

      Some would say you can do better by picking when to buy or sell. But, Unless you have specialist (insider) knowledge, or enough money to change the market, you are unlikely to better the market. Even expert, share trading fund, managers rarely do better than index funds, long term.

      I know many people who lost their shirts on shares in the 80’s by leveraging to buy shares.

      Ultimately the only organization that has the long term view and clout to offer the new venture finance, particularly on sustainable energy and products, we need, is the State.

  9. DH 9

    I’m not sure this has the right explanation on business lending. The problem there is that banks will only lend up to 60% on asset value while still demanding a 100% security over the whole asset. Their reasoning is that a receivership fire-sale of business assets will usually return at least 60% so that’s the maximum they lend while claiming a first ranked security over the entire asset. Try and buy a commercial property – they demand a 40% deposit & then take the entire building as security over their 60% loan.

    Banks are the only no-risk party in the business arena and that’s what creates all the problems. Everyone else has to carry the entire business risk from the remaining 40% of asset value. When a business goes bust the bank typically gets all their dosh back, often including interest arrears, and every other creditor gets nothing.

    The finance companies went bust because the banks had first ranking securities over all the assets the finance companies lent against. The NZ banks lost bugger-all in those big crashes, they had the first mortgages. Risk & reward isn’t the mantra of banks.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Correct, in the casino of capitalism, the banks run the house.

      • DH 9.1.1

        Aye, they do but it doesn’t need to be that way if we got a Govt with some balls. Another reason they have the ridiculously low 60% is because it gives them plenty of margin in a receivership to recover generous costs, penalty interest etc. ANZ did ok out of Feltex, everyone else lost their shirt.

        IMO the law needs to be changed so no lender can recover interest from a receivership as part of a security, it should be strictly the capital value of the debt. Interest & other costs should be the very last ranking.

        • Herodotus 9.1.1.1

          Problem is that banks take charges over specific assets. in this case land & buildings.
          In 08 we never experienced a real drop in residential property. In many cases around Auckland property is 10%+ above the 07/08 sales values achieved, so property is maintaining its real inflation adjusted rate over a severe and testing time.
          If property was 66% of what it currently is, many issues affecting NZ would be solved (and maintaining the long run wages to cost ratio refer link below), less offshore debt, increased disposable incomes to name a few. Problem is that (I cannot see) how an adjustment can be achieved with minimal transitional damage. Easiest way apply CGT on all property, but have a reduced rate for the family home (say 50% of that for all other property), and place control limits over what a bank can loan on a property e.g. min debt:equity ratio on any deal.
          And land “inflation” is far more than what has been statistically reported- as housing densities have greatly increased in the last 10 years or so. I.e. the size of sections has reduced from the 1000m (1/4 acre), to 750m to now 450-500m standard Auckland stand alone section, and in increasing frequency sections below 300m2. The smaller the section the greater the house build costs. As houses to comply to site coverage and return a return to the builder/developer has to be multi level. To reduce build costs both in time and $ is to build single level.
          And for interest read the Housing Affordability report recently released
          http://www.productivity.govt.nz/final-report/1468

          • DH 9.1.1.1.1

            “Problem is that banks take charges over specific assets.”

            Not always, that usually only applies to funding specific property assets of a business or residential property. Many business loans take the equivalent of a debenture over the entire assets of the business. Take a good look at a lot of the companies listed on the NZX and you’ll find that the banks have first dibs on shareholder equity with most, if not all, of them. That’s how shareholders lost every cent they had invested in Feltex; ANZ had a charge over the company.

            That’s one of the prime reasons that wise investors don’t buy shares. Shareholder capital has been subordinated to the banks. Shareholder capital exists on paper but if any company on the NZX went bust shareholders would lose everything while the banks would get every cent back. Who wants to take that kind of risk with shares?

            • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Consequently it means that private investors are very reluctant to help invest in growing, medium sized companies, leaving them starved of capital with few places to turn…except again to the banks.

          • prism 9.1.1.1.2

            @ Herodotus 6/5 8.12pm

            As houses to comply to site coverage and return a return to the builder/developer has to be multi level. To reduce build costs both in time and $ is to build single level.

            Bad idea. There is an urgent need for Low multi-level housing to stop the spread of suburbs which create transport problems and costly service provision, (extensive sewer water electricity pipes). The idea of hectares of 20th century style single level housing suburbs flowing out over the countryside is redundant.

            But the trend to hectares of soulless two-storey houses in Auckland developers suburbs now are so depressing. They all have costly soaring two-storey front porches which seem to aim at pretention, the size of the house spreads over the section so that there is little room between houses for sun, privacy separation etc. And they are as individual as 19th century British mass housing, or the ‘tract housing of USA which they are likely to be modelled on.

  10. mouse 10

    Great post KJT… It doesn’t sole all the problems of the world, But it does highlight one of the biggies, and one that can be fixed.

    The deregulation of the 80’s-90s really fucked NZ over…

    We (NZ Inc.) need to re assert control over our economy and it Starts with Banking and reckless administion/ oversight of the banking industry, any fool can create wealth by loaning it into being… and we need to get that Genie back in the bottle.

    Demanding more prudent loan to value ratios on lending… and entry barriers/capital controls on those who are more reckless than ourselves would be a good place to start.

    • KJT 10.1

      Thanks to everyone for helping to sharpen up my thinking on this.

      When I have time I will put up some possible solutions for discussion.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        Steve Keen has got an idea worth considering. Not simply restricting banks to a house value to loan ratio, but making the ratio based on the likely monthly rental for the property.

        This would kill off the ability for banks to lend more and more money into fueling an asset price bubble, which they could do in a normal house value to loan ratio system, as house values would be going up as part of the bubble at the same time.

  11. BM 11

    Had a pretty large amount of immigrants during the 90’s and 2000’s.
    Of those a good proportion of people were from the UK who didn’t blink an eye paying 100k + over the asking price.
    When you were getting 3-4 dollars per pound it didn’t really matter paying an extra 100k for a property you liked unfortunately it did push the price up beyond what a lot of kiwis could afford.

  12. BM 12

    Edit- things seem to have gone a bit pear shaped with the code

  13. james 111 13

    If we look at affordability of housing in Auckland in particular whilst I agree that the banks are scalping at the moment they are getting more than 200 basis points above their buying rate on lending. We also have to look at the impact of not releasing anymore land for sections this has forced house prices up hugely. Along with the compliance costs of the Council these have risen several hundred % in the past 10 years. eg to subdivide a section in Whangamata in 2003 was a cost of $8000 by 2007 that had risen to $40000. Council gouging ,and spending is totally out of control they have really impacted on the lack of houses being built along with the house prices of existing houses

    • KJT 13.1

      $35000 was the council price to subdivide a Coromandel section last year.

      Lack of supply does not help either.

      • james 111 13.1.1

        Totally agree the subdivision cost is absurd has gone up over 400% in most places just to review a set of plans. Which stops supply in its own right or pushes section prices up so they are unaffordable by first home buyers. The Councils are gouging on compliance costs it really needs to be looked at hard.

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          Council costs are still only a tiny proportion of the $200K or so median Auckland house price increase of the last 10 years.

    • Draco T Bastard 13.2

      Increasing the physical size of a city isn’t a solution either as you will always eventually run out of land. The solution is to build upwards or have people move to other cities.

      Along with the compliance costs of the Council these have risen several hundred % in the past 10 years

      The solution that you’re calling for, more land availability, is what’s likely driving those increased costs because of all the extra administration and costs that goes along with it.

  14. prism 14

    What are the Council’s excuses for putting their rates up so high? Are they trying to take some off the top towards the costs from previous lax control leading to leaky buildings and the cost of remediation etc? If so, is this cost being loaded in full or part, on to the planning section of the Council when it actually is so large it’s an all-Council burden?

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      The Supercity will save rate payers money. John Banks promised.

  15. prism 15

    lprent – My edit function was refused straight after I put a comment. Then I couldn’t even Close the window. Nothing happened. I got back in by opening a second blog so I could make this report. I did scroll up the page to get information and then had to use my F5 key to refresh so I could read my updated comment,
    something I have had to do since comments are under the heading of WP Ajax Edit Co.

  16. Poission 16

    The fundamental problem is the policy price paradox with property.

    The reserve bank sets interest to curb inflation (demand) The increase in equity in property allows borrowers to use their houses property to borrow more fueling higher costs.

    Borrowers for say small commercial set their rents at both funding costs and revaluation of assets forcing business to increase prices and constrain costs such as wages.

    The asymmetry has distorted the market,making rents for small business around 20-25% of turnover rather then around 10-12% historically.

    The constraint to reduce property inflation is a policy problem,where either property tax (which is widely used o/s) or a reduction in offsets against income,interest,depreciation etc.

    The increased use of say housing for leverage against additional property purchases was a mechanism that still drives property pricing.

  17. Jeremy Harris 17

    Lol, on The Standard it’s like reading posts by primary school children:

    By September 2004 Beal Bank’s assets had climbed to $7.7 billion. Then Beal stopped buying, letting his loans run off. By September 2007 assets had shriveled to $2.9 billion, one-fifth of which was cold cash. He was worried that consumers had taken on too much debt and money was being lent to companies for next to nothing. “Every deal done since 2004 is just stupid,” Beal says.

    He began by pulling back from home loans–even those guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Beal thought the two quasi-government agencies were over-leveraged. When staffers mentioned their guarantees in deal presentations he would fire back that these guarantees were “worthless.”

    Outsiders thought it was Beal who didn’t get it. Despite its aversion to credit then, the bank occasionally had to buy mortgages to meet federal low-income-lending requirements. Jonathan Goodman, then head of loan purchases, recalls salesmen from Countrywide laughing at him on the phone when he refused to buy iffy condo paper backed by the two agencies. “Countrywide, Bank of America, Washington Mutual … every single [mortgage seller] thought we were insane,” Goodman says. “They didn’t know why we cared. They thought Fannie and Freddie guarantees were as good as Treasuries.”

    http://www.forbes.com/2009/04/03/banking-andy-beal-business-wall-street-beal.html

    Yip government mandating of central reserve banking and government deposit gaurantees have nothing at all to do with the problems in banking and it’s reverberations throughout economies, it’s all the fault of the evil “invisible hand” and “greedy banksters”. Puh-lease.

    • joe90 17.1

      WTF do the US mortgage scandals and the systematic theft by the lending industry have to do with NZ house prices Jeremy?.

      • Jeremy Harris 17.1.1

        Because like the US we have government mandated central banking and deposit guarantees.

    • Colonial Viper 17.2

      Most of the US subprime mortgage problems were caused by control frauds perpetrated by senior managers in private financial institutions, assisted by the “independent” credit ratings agencies.

      http://www.creditwritedowns.com/2012/02/william-k-black-explains-control-fraud-at-length.html

      Simple Government deposit guarantees have no role to play in the perpetration of these control frauds, and neither does the classical “invisible hand” of the market.

      • Jeremy Harris 17.2.1

        Some of the problem was caused as you describe, most of the problem was caused by Fannie and Freedie, federal mandates for subprime mortgages, federal guarantees of deposits, expansionary monetary policy by the federally created and mandated Fed Reserve and million and one other federal market interventions…

        • Draco T Bastard 17.2.1.1

          And who controls the US political scene?

        • prism 17.2.1.2

          Jeremy Harris You sound as if you are repeating the mantra of right wing financiers in the USA – no way will they find fault with their own sector. No it’s all government’s fault – and the fact that it can be captured by the system with regulation as a pretence is ignored. There is a moral hazard in getting too close to free marketeers if a government intends to provide oversight and take steps to ensure probity in financial rules are followed.

        • Colonial Viper 17.2.1.3

          Jeremy Harris YOU ARE NOT LISTENING

          Over 80% of subprime mortgage fraud was perpertrated by LENDERS acting under the authority of CEOs and other senior executives operating CONTROL FRAUDS.

          FMac and FMae were late players into this scene, PRIVATE financiers were the biggest and fastest in.

          And as others have tried to point out to you…in the US, Congress is simply an extension of American corporate/banking power.

        • KJT 17.2.1.4

          Really. So problems which occurred AFTER regulations were relaxed were a result of too much regulation??

          Freddie Macs and Fannie Mae’s collapse also occurred AFTER the GFC. You are confusing an effect with the cause. A few hundreds of millions of defaults, which happened mostly after the GFC reduced incomes, caused the 100’s of billions GFC?? Sarc.

          You are parroting all the other Neo-liberal apologists who like to pass the buck, and the costs, to anyone, but them selves.

          Sorry. we tried your way. Newsflash! It failed!

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  • Ferguson – it just ain’t cricket
    Why do white men fear young black men? Why in this country do we continue to struggle with this? Asked by an old black guy in Ferguson, the crafty questions were answered by an abrupt end to the story to...
    The Daily Blog
  • MEDIA WATCH: If we want to understand the world around us, we might be bett...
    Psychologist Daniel Kahneman is a Nobel Prize winner and author of Thinking, Fast and Slow, a depressing but impressive book that is the culmination of his life’s work. Kahnemann proposes that people think in two different modes – ‘fast’ and ‘slow’....
    The Daily Blog
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep 2.
    TDB Video: The Daily Blog Breakfast Club, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week Activist and blogger Jessie Hume and political commentator Keith Locke. This Week: Topic...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Slater-Key Txt-Messages Trip-Up – Did Cameron Slater Plan this?
    . Cameron Slater (L) and John Key (R) . Timeline Sunday 23 November: John Key apologises to right-wing blogger Cameron Slater over the publication of an email that forced Justice Minister Judith Collins’ resignation. Monday 24 November: John Key and...
    The Daily Blog
  • When the teflon is stripped away…
    . . To re-cap something I wrote on 13 September, regarding a hard-hitting interview between “The Nation’s” Lisa Owen and John Key; For possibly the first time since Stephen Sackur interviewed Key on Hard Talk in May, 2011, this [...
    The Daily Blog
  • My Select Committee submission against the “terrorist fighters” bill
    This morning I gave this “oral submission” to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee opposing the Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill.  It is a pity only Greens are against the Bill. It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Pixies in the Garden? Making money
    In 2009, John Key said “there aren’t little pixies at the bottom of the garden printing cash” (John Armstrong, Colin Espiner). He was wrong of course. Just about every country has its own pixie-in-chief, though not at the bottom of the...
    The Daily Blog
  • AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE – Government must allow further scrut...
    As the New Zealand government seeks to rush new through new anti-terror legislation, Amnesty International is raising grave concerns over the speed at which the Bill is being rushed through Parliament and is calling for an extension to the consultation...
    The Daily Blog
  • Tension inside the Blue Tent – questions that should be asked
    With Andrew Little on fire taking a straight shooting no crap approach to Key’s dead eyed duplicity, the tensions inside the Blue Tent of National are at risk of erupting again. When the TeamKey brand falters, National’s factions sharpen their knives....
    The Daily Blog
  • FiveAA Australia: Is NZ’s PM a Liar? + Kim Dotcom Says He’s Broke
    5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.In this week’s Across The Ditch bulletin on FiveAA.com.au Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey discuss how allegations of dirty politics continue to dog the Prime Minister John Key’s third term in government. Also, internet tycoon...
    The Daily Blog
  • Cam’s ‘Slightly Left of Centre’ sock puppet threatens Key in public
    What did Judith Collins say about payback? Looks like Slater has taken that lesson to heart as he uses his sock puppet over at Slightly Left of Centre to drop threats and hints that he has recorded conversations with Key that has...
    The Daily Blog
  • Justice System Changes Must Ensure No More Roastings In Court
    On Monday there was good news for rape survivors and this blog was supposed to be about the success of our advocacy, and it is about that success, but today’s events have brought into stark focus the real-world importance of...
    The Daily Blog
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Key Post Electio...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Key Post Election...
    The Daily Blog
  • Top 5 Texts from Cam to Key
    So Cam texted Key before the report came out despite Key claiming no contact? Top 5 Texts from Cam to Key 5 – I still have all the photos 4 – Yes my shapeshifting Lizard Master Overlord 3 – Max isn’t talking to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Hold on – did NZ just have a coup?
    Ummmmm. Wait a minute here. Just so that we all understand what’s been revealed. The Prime Minister’s Office used the Secret Intelligence Service to falsify classified information to smear the Leader of the Opposition via a far right hate blogger...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • Lisa Owen interviews Glenn Inquiry chair Bill Wilson
    Lisa Owen: Family violence in this country has been described as the slow-burning disaster. It accounts for half of homicides and takes a third of police resources. The Glenn Inquiry's final blueprint was released on Friday, calling for a designated...
    Scoop politics
  • Lisa Owen interviews Finance Minister Bill English
    He’s still “confident” the Government will make its forecast surplus in the 2014/15 year although dairy prices have dropped “further and faster than expected”...
    Scoop politics
  • Q + A 30/11/14: Spying, Family Violence, Texts
    We'll debate why the State needs new powers to spy on Kiwis and the controversial laws that are being rushed through Parliament....
    Scoop politics
  • Arrival of Phillip Smith in New Zealand
    On arrival with his police escort at Auckland Airport tomorrow morning Phillip Smith will be met by other police staff and complete customs and immigration formalities....
    Scoop politics
  • UNICEF Calls on NZ Youth to Apply for Youth Ambassador Roles
    UNICEF NZ Calls on NZ Youth to Apply for Youth Ambassador Roles UNICEF NZ has once again launched its nationwide search for six new Youth Ambassadors and is calling on enthusiastic young people to apply before Friday, 12 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Kiwifruit Claim Filed in High Court in Wellington
    The Kiwifruit Claim’s statement of claim has been filed in the High Court in Wellington this afternoon....
    Scoop politics
  • Judgment: John Banks Dotcom Donation Appeal
    A The application to adduce the evidence of Messrs Schaeffer and Karnes is granted. B The application to adduce evidence of Mr Dotcom’s driving conviction is declined. C The appeal is allowed. D The conviction is set aside and a...
    Scoop politics
  • Doctors support call for independent health assessment
    Senior doctors and dentists are formally throwing their weight behind growing calls for a formal independent health assessment of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). A recommendation about the TPPA was put to 134 public hospital specialists...
    Scoop politics
  • Korero Mai Ki Ahau: Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 November 2014
    Broadcast on Waatea 603AM Saturday 12.00 - 12.30pm Sunday 12.00 - 12.30pm Both shows repeated 5.00pm – 6.00pm On Sunday Saturday 29 November 2014 | The new Minister for Maori Development is taking a fresh look at the Te Reo...
    Scoop politics
  • Anti-speeding campaign based on phony science
    Ticketing ordinary motorists will have no effect on the groups who cause most road deaths, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics
  • Human Rights lawyers’ concerns over Terrorist Fighters Bill
    The Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill will dramatically erode human rights and civil liberties if passed in its current form, said the Human Rights Lawyer’s Association Aotearoa New Zealand (HRLA)....
    Scoop politics
  • Privacy Commissioner’s naming policy
    Following a period of public consultation, the Privacy Commissioner is implementing a new policy on naming agencies that are in breach of the Privacy Act. The change takes effect on 1 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Need for whole-of-government approach to family violence
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says The People’s Blueprint report by the Glenn Inquiry makes a strong case for a whole-of-government approach to combatting family violence, and highlights some of the ways we could do things better....
    Scoop politics
  • Stop Fracking in Our Big Blue Backyard – Frack Free Kapiti
    Evidence given at the EPA hearing of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) at sea blows the industry accepted line that fracking is not happening offshore in New Zealand right out of the water....
    Scoop politics
  • Solidarity with West Papua on 1 December
    Below are the details of the solidarity events in Aotearoa New Zealand to mark West Papua Independence Day, 1 December - there are four events this year: one in Christchurch, one in Wellington and two in Auckland. If you are...
    Scoop politics
  • No charges laid over piggeries investigations
    No charges laid over piggeries investigations 28 November 2014 The Ministry for Primary Industries did not have sufficient evidence to lay charges following two animal welfare investigations into incidents at piggeries earlier this year. The investigations...
    Scoop politics
  • Deep Sea Drilling in Rising Seas
    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment's report on the effects of rising sea levels and climate change adds another argument against this Government's expansion of fossil fuel exploration....
    Scoop politics
  • Slower population growth in the long term
    New Zealand's population will likely grow by 1.4–1.8 percent a year during 2014–16, but growth will be lower in the long term, Statistics New Zealand said today....
    Scoop politics
  • Big Buddy on the Glenn Inquiry People’s Blueprint
    November 28, 2014 The inclusion of robust screening as a tool to prevent child abuse, highlighted in the Glenn Inquiry’s People’s Blueprint, is welcomed by Big Buddy CEO Richard Aston. “It’s heartening to see this high-calibre report come out...
    Scoop politics
  • People’s Blueprint for tackling Family Violence
    The recently Dunedin Collaboration Against Family Violence (DCAFV) is pleased to support the fundamental changes in the way our legal system deals with family violence that the report calls for. We need to do more to support victims, and ensure...
    Scoop politics
  • People’s Blueprint – Both Good News and a Wake-Up Call
    The Patron of the Glenn Inquiry, Dame Catherine Tizard, says there is some good news in The People’s Blueprint, after the shocking picture painted six months ago in The People’s Report....
    Scoop politics
  • Glenn Inquiry Funder Keeps His Promise
    The founder and funder of the Glenn Inquiry, Sir Owen Glenn, said today he has kept the promise he made when he set up the independent inquiry in 2012. “I set up the Glenn Inquiry because it was clear to...
    Scoop politics
  • Support for Blue Print call for a stand-alone agency
    Human Rights Commissioner lead on family violence, Dr Jackie Blue welcomes the Glenn Inquiry, ‘The People’s Blue Print’, which places at its heart that being safe and free from violence is a fundamental human right....
    Scoop politics
  • People’s Blueprint Offers Solutions to Family Violence
    New Zealand has a fresh opportunity to reduce child abuse and family violence and save and restore lives under a powerful new model for combating the problem proposed by the Glenn Inquiry....
    Scoop politics
  • Submission: Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    My three key areas of concern relate to: • The duration of visual surveillance warrants; • The controls around warrantless surveillance powers; • Clarifying the continuation of controls around access to Passenger Name Record (PNR) data under...
    Scoop politics
  • The case is clear for climate action that supports health
    The need for rapid action on climate change in New Zealand in order to protect health is clear, according to a group of climate and health experts. Countries elsewhere in the world are already taking significant action, while New Zealand...
    Scoop politics
  • EDUCANZ Debate Ignores Teachers
    The legislation for the creation of the new EDUCANZ to replace the former Teachers’ Council body is now undergoing its second reading. Without warning, it was promoted to the top the queue this week....
    Scoop politics
  • Phillip Smith en-route back to New Zealand.
    Police confirm that Phillip Smith has been deported from Brazil and is en-route back to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • Scaremongering and Showing Contempt for Democracy
    The government has been accused of fabricating an increased risk to New Zealand security to justify new invasive powers in the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. And its decision to allow just 48 hours for public submissions on the Bill...
    Scoop politics
  • Legislation “a travesty of democratic process”
    Peace Movement Aotearoa today called on the government to put the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill on hold - pending a comprehensive review of existing legislation - in a written submission to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee,...
    Scoop politics
  • Bill needs amending to better protect human rights
    The Human Rights Commission submission to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee this afternoon on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill makes specific recommendations relating to passport denial; increasing safeguards around visual...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ’s gender equality issues in international forum
    New Zealand faces similar gender equality issues and opportunities to those of its neighbouring countries, according to the latest international conference on women’s empowerment....
    Scoop politics
  • Countering human trafficking is an ongoing challenge for NZ
    At first glance, it is difficult to believe that human trafficking is an offence that is taking place in New Zealand. It is a harsh reminder that the rule of law sometimes does not reach far enough....
    Scoop politics
  • Government must allow further scrutiny of bill
    As the New Zealand government seeks to rush new through new anti-terror legislation, Amnesty International is raising grave concerns over the speed at which the Bill is being rushed through Parliament and is calling for an extension to the consultation...
    Scoop politics
  • Calling on anti-violence activists to step up
    Māori Party co-leaders believe every individual, whānau, hapū and iwi can help stop the high level of family violence that exists in our country....
    Scoop politics
  • More effective social services inquiry update Nov 2014
    The Productivity Commission’s More effective social services inquiry aims to shed light on how commissioning and contracting influence the quality and effectiveness of social services, and to suggest actions government agencies and others could take...
    Scoop politics
  • Keith Locke presentation on Countering Foreign Fighters Bill
    It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to members of Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee again, and remember my 12 years on your committee. However, I don’t wish my submission today to be taken as endorsement of...
    Scoop politics
  • Significant issues for NZ in sea level rise report
    Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has recognised findings of Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright’s report released today on the impact of rising seas as significant for coastal areas of New Zealand, aligning well with work the...
    Scoop politics
  • White Ribbon Campaign Shocked at Fatal Stabbing
    The White Ribbon Campaign extends its condolences to the family of a women fatally stabbed in Auckland's North Shore....
    Scoop politics
  • One Plan signing is “historic moment” for the environment
    The signing of the Horizon Regional Council’s One Plan after a decade of debate, legal action and controversy is being hailed by Fish & Game as a landmark in the battle to protect the nation’s water quality. Horizons councillors approved...
    Scoop politics
  • Look at the Road, Not the Speedo
    Responding to the Fairfax article that police will be issuing tickets over the summer to anyone driving 1km/h or more over the speed limit, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Worker immunity critical to safety in Meat Industry
    The Meat Workers Union has today urged the Select Committee hearing submissions on the Health & Safety Reform bill to strengthen provisions that protect the rights of workers to be involved and speak out, saying that it’s becoming increasingly...
    Scoop politics
  • PCE report brings home impacts of climate change
    Youth climate organisation Generation Zero has welcomed the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment's ' Changing Climate and Rising Seas ' report and says it demonstrates climate change will affect all of us....
    Scoop politics
  • Law Society urges reduction of terrorist fighter bill powers
    The New Zealand Law Society says powers proposed in the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill should be reduced to ensure they are strictly limited to countering the threats that have arisen....
    Scoop politics
  • Sea level rise won’t only affect infrastructure
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is asking the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) to widen the focus of her next report on climate change-driven sea level rise....
    Scoop politics
  • Changing climate and rising seas: Understanding the science
    During my seven years as Commissioner, I have consistently said that climate change is the biggest environmental issue we face. This investigation has provided an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of what is causing climate change and one of...
    Scoop politics
  • Council refuses to take part in farcical submissions process
    The New Zealand Council for Civil Liberties refuses to take part in the submissions process around the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill....
    Scoop politics
  • Laws of War to Be Debated at Wellington Event
    The political and human consequences of war and civil unrest are widely covered in themedia but International Humanitarian Law (IHL), the body of law which exists to protect all parties to armed conflict, rarely gets attention....
    Scoop politics
  • Forum Compact Development Partner Peer Review of New Zealand
    Following the completion of the first leg of the review of New Zealand’s development cooperation in the Pacific, the Forum Compact Review Team is now visiting Kiribati to assess the effectiveness of New Zealand’s assistance in the small island developing...
    Scoop politics
  • YWCA Auckland award for long-time women’s role model
    New Zealand’s first female Governor General and Mayor of Auckland has been granted a Lifetime Achievement Award by YWCA Auckland, for her services to the Auckland community and acting as a role model for Kiwi women nationwide....
    Scoop politics
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