Australia has the best developed economy in the world, and the sixth lowest level of taxation in the OECD, but you wouldn’t know it by listening to the absolute shit that comes out of the mouths of the naysayers.
On Monday the share market dropped 2% and it was one of the first items on the news. To believe the reports, our superannuation was doomed and we were all destined to eat cold cat food in our old age. On Tuesday it bounced back by 1.5% but only got a mention in the finance reports just before sport. Then on Wednesday it was up by 0.3% again, largely on response to the GDP figures showing economic growth in Australia is at an amazingly high 4.3%. This is despite Tony Abbott saying on Tuesday, after interest rates dropped again, that Australia’s economy is weak.
If you believed the crap that is fed your way you could be forgiven for thinking that superannuation is a massive waste of money and that it is, in fact, just some conspiracy to make fat cats richer and provide taxation revenue for the government. It’s not. Super is one of the things that sets Australia apart from the rest of the world. When the system hits maturity it will set us up for life, despite short term movements in the share market.
If you have more than five or six years ‘til you retire, you should not give a rat’s about what the share market does from one day to the next. You only need to be concerned with what happens over the long term. Although it’s no guarantee as to what will happen in the future, the past has shown us that shares outperform all other assets over the long term. I guarantee that you won’t even remember Monday’s stock market events in a year, let alone in 10, 20 or 30 years when you learn to play bridge. That is, if you ignored the hype and hysteria of the crap media reports and didn’t touch your super or any shares you may hold.
If you don’t know anything about GDP figures, here’s a quick lesson. Negative numbers are bad, positive numbers between zero and about 1.5% are not great. 1.6% to 2.5% is ok, and anything above 3% is better than what Australia has averaged over the last 20 years of golden economic activity. Wednesday’s 4.3% result is incredible. Even when you take off 0.5% that economists predict will be the impact of introducing a carbon price, it is still way above trend.
I know that those figures of economic growth are largely because of the two speed economy with mining companies dragging the country along, however the economies of seven of our eight states and territories are growing, and there’s not a lot of mining in Tassie, the ACT, NSW, Victoria and SA.
Yes, there are a large number of individuals in Australia doing it tough. Kind of. Take a visit to a developing country for a bit of perspective as to how tough someone has it living in a country with access to free healthcare, education and social security as well as the right to vote. And just think – if you are reading this, you have access to the internet, something that billions of people around the world don’t know anything about.
We have a very strong economy, albeit with short term movements in our share market. We enjoy very low inflation, very low unemployment, low taxation, high average wages, and a standard of living that is the envy of the world. And all this despite the federal opposition’s dog whistling that we’ve never been worse off.