What's your prediction on the Australian Dollar?

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MEL_Traveller

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You think "free" healthcare is the only thing stopping people from dying when I demonstrate clearly that it is not. I'll declare victory on this point.

...

Businesses pay their employees what they are worth - an employee's worth is based on their productivity. If the minimum wage is $15, a business will only employ someone who can generate at least $15 of value to the business.

...

It's not viable to pay someone $40 to pour coffees on a Sunday, or to stand at the cash register of a boutique. No wonder Australian retail is struggling and people prefer to buy when they travel overseas.

I don't have any financial qualifications but from a lay perspective...

Absolutely I think in a lot of cases free healthcare is stopping people from dying. In America some people simply can't afford to go to the doctor.

I don't believe that a lot of businesses pay employees what they're worth. An employee might generate hundreds of thousands of dollars profit for the company, but still only get paid a tiny wage. Have a look at some of the overseas factories manufacturing for global brands. Many businesses in Australia will try and get away with paying their employees as little as they can. Maybe bankers and finance employees get paid lots... but they're playing with out money. (And a great job they did with the GFC.)

It could well be viable to pay workers $40 an hour to pour coffee if your cafe is heaving on a Sunday with foodie types who rather like to brunch... and lunch...

Australian retail struggling? Sure. But I go back to a key problem... every morning when I used to go to work I passed a suit shop. They had some nice stuff... suits, ties, shirts, cuff links. All stuff I needed. But they were closed at 830am on my way to the station. And they were closed on the way home at 630pm. Hundreds of people passing buy - unable to get in and buy anything. Where was the owner? Not in the shop at the hours I wanted them to be there. So yeah - they were struggling, but partly because of their doing.
 
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dajop

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Though Singapore was undoubtedly as you describe it in the past it is slowly moving away from that model and I guess that a majority of Singaporeans are proud of their state now.

They may be proud of their state, and certainly would be in the face of outside criticism. However there's increasing disquiet about increasing disparity between the rich and the poor and both the number and roles of expats (managerial) and foreign workers (labour). Also concerns over health care and particularly over new CPF (Singapore superannuation) restrictions.
 

JohnK

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If you thinking minimum wage is too generous, I invite you to try living on the equivalent of minimum wage for, say, three months.

Heck, just do it on paper and let us know how you'd go in theory. Minimum wage is approximately $680/wk.
That's a heck of a lot of money.

So you can't buy a fancy car, have all the latest gadgets, eat at expensive restaurants, travel overseas 2-3 times year and do without status runs.

What is so difficult about living on $680/week?

My parents live off the aged pension and provide food for themselves and 2 adult sons and are still able to save.
 

Gredgy69

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That's a heck of a lot of money.

So you can't buy a fancy car, have all the latest gadgets, eat at expensive restaurants, travel overseas 2-3 times year and do without status runs.

What is so difficult about living on $680/week?

My parents live off the aged pension and provide food for themselves and 2 adult sons and are still able to save.

John, do they own their own home? A lot of pensioners do. Paying a mortgage or paying rent will eat up most of that $680 per week. Doesn't leave much left over for food, petrol, schooling, etc.
 

cove

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Listen CE food tastes better when someone else is paying for it. Now that I am an orphan I miss it.
Yesterday at Galvins in the Hilton Park Lane 28th floor you realize just how much the Aussie dollar has slumped against the GBP. We need China to get a second wind to carry us all to the promised land.
Now if that doesn't work out we will need to keep working and we need to build lots of mobile home parks to store our pensioners.
 

drsmithy

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That's a heck of a lot of money.

So you can't buy a fancy car, have all the latest gadgets, eat at expensive restaurants, travel overseas 2-3 times year and do without status runs.

Typical straw man. (And you couldn't do that with twice as much.)

What is so difficult about living on $680/week?

Rent will be $250-300 (and that's shared accommodation).
Food will be $100.
Utilities + Phone will be $40-50.
Travel will be $40-50 (and that's assuming public transport, more if you need to run a car).

Any unexpected emergency expenses like a thousand dollar bill to fix your car ? There goes your spare cash for six months.

My parents live off the aged pension and provide food for themselves and 2 adult sons and are still able to save.

Your parents probably own their own home, to say nothing of the discounts and benefits a seniors card delivers. They'd comfortably have the equivalent of a couple of hundred dollars more a week compared to someone working for minimum wage.
 

drsmithy

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Staying O(ff) T(optic) for just a little longer. ------
If you can't work it out for yourself then just ask any pensioner.

Pensioners tend to already own their own homes and get a whole swathe of discounts and allowances.

I would argue the pension is too low as well, so I'm afraid your point falls a bit flat.
 

drsmithy

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As for Gini it is also an imperfect measurement.Afghanistan,Serbia and Kazakhstan have similar ginis to Switzerland so they are just as good countries to live?

I never even came close to suggest Gini is a perfect, or the only, measurement.

It is one that needs to be combined with others. Eg. a high average wealth and low GINI will mean the majority of people in society are wealthy.

The point I am trying to make is that averages are skewed by the incredibly exponential nature of income and wealth at the upper end of the scale. Median is a better measurement to use if you must use that sort of measurement.

Interesting that you bring up libertarians.Dont I remember you using that word to describe your beliefs in the past.

I doubt it. I consider (modern - ie: the American school) Libertarianism to be one of the most childish and cancerous "philosophies" ever conceived, essentially summed up by four words: "me want, screw you".

The problem is there is no measurement that by itself measures a countries success either economically or the wellbeing of it's citizens.

Yes ?
 

drron

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I doubt it. I consider (modern - ie: the American school) Libertarianism to be one of the most childish and cancerous "philosophies" ever conceived, essentially summed up by four words: "me want, screw you"
Straw man.I gave a few examples.Did not mention American school so not applicable.
 

footy99

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Rent will be $250-300 (and that's shared accommodation).
Food will be $100.
Utilities + Phone will be $40-50.
Travel will be $40-50 (and that's assuming public transport, more if you need to run a car).

This is a pretty good description of how high our minimum wage is. Bear in mind this is the absolute worst case scenario for an employed person in Australia and any increase makes it that much harder to become employed.

$450 of the $680 easily covers all essentials (my utilities + phone/internet and groceries are both almost half that now without having to cut back so there is plenty of wiggle room even there). You've got $1000 odd per month left for savings/emergencies/discretionary spending.

Most have done it at some point. I have, I'm sure you have. It's not supposed to be lavish. But it is more than adequate. That's why no other country gets within cooee of the same amount.

I see it as an advantage tbh. But certainly couldn't justify further increases in the near future, particularly given their impact on unemployment. That's where real problems begin.
 

Flashback

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Exactly - and whilst not trying to overgeneralise here, my observations are those that work on minimum wage tend to struggle as a fair component of the spending can gravitate towards alcohol and cigarettes.
 

medhead

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This is a pretty good description of how high our minimum wage is. Bear in mind this is the absolute worst case scenario for an employed person in Australia and any increase makes it that much harder to become employed.

$450 of the $680 easily covers all essentials (my utilities + phone/internet and groceries are both almost half that now without having to cut back so there is plenty of wiggle room even there). You've got $1000 odd per month left for savings/emergencies/discretionary spending.

Most have done it at some point. I have, I'm sure you have. It's not supposed to be lavish. But it is more than adequate. That's why no other country gets within cooee of the same amount.

I see it as an advantage tbh. But certainly couldn't justify further increases in the near future, particularly given their impact on unemployment. That's where real problems begin.

Don't forget income tax and Medicare levy
 

MEL_Traveller

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That's a heck of a lot of money.

So you can't buy a fancy car, have all the latest gadgets, eat at expensive restaurants, travel overseas 2-3 times year and do without status runs.

What is so difficult about living on $680/week?

My parents live off the aged pension and provide food for themselves and 2 adult sons and are still able to save.

I guess everyone's situation will be different. it might be true that not all pensioners are 'struggling', they're probably not living the high life either.

$1296 a fortnight, but out of that has to come phone/internet, private health, rates, repairs to the home, repairs to household appliances, home insurance, car insurance, electricity, water, gas, medical fees and medications, petrol.

Their rates ($1300) and private health ($2500) - that's already 3 out of 26 pension payments gone.

To actually live a little and enjoy life, less than $100 a day can be hard work.
 

JohnK

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John, do they own their own home? A lot of pensioners do. Paying a mortgage or paying rent will eat up most of that $680 per week. Doesn't leave much left over for food, petrol, schooling, etc.
True. Parents own their home. Understand rent or mortgage will hurt. But it is still possible to make things work. You need to make sacrifices.

Some very easy savings. Make your own breakfast and lunch for work and cook dinner at home. I see so many people eating out.

John are you serious? A grown man of your age still at home spongeing of your elderly parents? ;)
Yes it is embarrassing but mum loves helping out. She knows I am struggling. And even though my cooking is OK mums cooking is much better. :p
 
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moa999

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But that's the point - a pensioner who owns their own home, is much better off than one renting (often in government housing) but the pension is the same (even for those in multi-million dollar houses)
 

dajop

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But that's the point - a pensioner who owns their own home, is much better off than one renting (often in government housing) but the pension is the same (even for those in multi-million dollar houses)

Pension is the same but renters who meet certain requirements do receive rent assistance. Not that it would help much in the bigger cities.
 

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