Moody's Likes Australia's Credit

Moody’s has reaffirmed Australia’s AAA credit rating, as Malcolm Turnbull seeks to put pressure on Labor and crossbenchers to pass measures to help repair the budget.

Moody’s Investor Services said in a statement on Wednesday that reasons for maintaining the status quo were the expectation that Australia’s “demonstrated economic resilience will endure in an uncertain global environment”; its very strong institutional framework; and stronger “fiscal metrics” than many of its similarly rated peers.

African Policy Decisions could Improve with Better Data

African policy makers are increasingly called on to use evidence-based research to inform development decisions. However, this requires the rigorous collection of data as well as a coordinated system to disseminate it. This is why Kenya-based African Population Health Research Center is advocating for national policies to enable strong data systems. Donatien Beguy explains Africa’s challenges and opportunities.

What is data driven decision making in the world of policymaking?

Japan's Government Accelerates Market-Oriented Agricultural Reforms

In 2015, the government of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spearheaded a series of unprecedented amendments to the 1947 Agricultural Cooperative Law. These changes will loosen the stifling controls of the national and prefectural organisations of Japan Agricultural Cooperatives (JA) over local co-ops and farmers.

Many Hope Australian PM Turnbull has a Plan B

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s first major economic address since the July 2 federal election was, in most respects, the kind of speech one might have expected from a leader who had won with a comfortable margin.

He sounded like a prime minister whose campaign agenda had won widespread support, and who had been rewarded with a significantly increased parliamentary majority.

The Clinton Presidency Agenda

According to polls, the race to the White House is over. Clinton has won; Trump has lost. If that proves the case, US economic erosion will slow but imperial foreign policy may escalate, which has critical repercussions in Asia.

The polls reflect the new status quo. Despite her high unfavorability ratings, Clinton now has the support of every second registered voter, whereas Trump, with his high unfavorability ratings, can rely only on every third. As a result, Clinton’s likely voters nationwide amount to 45-50 percent, as against Trump’s 35-40 percent.

Relaxing Financial Controls the Chinese Way

It is as if Hamlet, the confused prince of Denmark, has taken up residence in Beijing.  The famed-prince wrestled with "seeming" and "being".  So are Chinese officials.  They seem to be relaxing their control financial markets, but are they really?  Are they tolerating market forces because they approve what they are doing, such as driving interest rates down or weakening the yuan?  If so what happens when the markets do something for which they don’t approve?

Should Australians Have Known more about the Ausgrid Decision?

Treasurer Scott Morrison has decided not to approve a controlling stake for either of two Chinese bidders in Ausgrid, the electricity network in New South Wales. He has cited national security concerns but has refused to be drawn further on the reasons.

In explaining his rejection of the bids, Morrison said, “The only person who’s security-cleared in this room to be able to hear the answer to that question is me.”