Quantifying "Dog Days"
Centre of Policy Studies, Victoria University, 2014 - Australia - 41 pages
"In his recent book "Dog Days", Garnaut (2013) argues that the Australian economy faces significant economic challenges, with a risk that just as the investment phase of the mining boom ends, Australia will be entering an economic environment characterised by declining terms of trade, a rising dependency ratio and rising world interest rates. In this paper, we evaluate the consequences of these challenges for key macroeconomic variables and per-capita measures of economic wellbeing using an economy-wide model. With plausible assumptions on key inputs to our model, we produce a scenario that is broadly consistent with the pessimistic picture for the immediate future of the Australian economy as portrayed in Dog Days. We forecast real per-capita incomes to fall at a rate of 0.3% p.a., so that by 2019/20 they have returned to the level of 2010/11. To maintain an unchanged unemployment rate over the forecast period, the average real wage must fall by 0.89% p.a., returning to its 2007/08 level by 2019/20. Fiscal consolidation sees damped growth in consumption. With real aggregate per-capita consumption falling at -079% p.a., it returns to its 2008/09 level by 2019/20."
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