Latest posts

2019

The weird world of negative interest rates

Unless you have a mortgage or you are the Minister of Finance, it is a world you would not want to inhabit. But for millions of Europeans, that may soon be reality. We can only hope that even after the RBNZ’s next cut, New Zealanders will not contemplate going into the topsy-turvy world the Germans are about to enter. [...]

Trans-Tasman monitoring

Given the past and current closeness of Treasury and the Reserve Bank, should not a monitoring agent be more removed from the object it is supervising? [...]

Boris, a Cicero reincarnate

He famously claimed his chances of becoming Prime Minister were “about as good as the chances of finding Elvis on Mars, or my being reincarnated as an olive”. It probably means Boris Johnson will be a pizza topping in his next life. [...]

Not all is well in Brussels

All’s well that ends well. There is a temptation to sum up the resolution of the European Union’s personnel-finding troubles in such a Shakespearean way. [...]

Danish lessons

Whatever Denmark does, it can only do so because it is backed by impressive productivity. If New Zealand wants to improve its wellbeing, it needs to lift its abysmally low productivity first. [...]

Learning by comparison

Next week, The New Zealand Initiative will be taking a delegation of more than three dozen senior business leaders to Copenhagen. Our members want to study and experience first-hand what makes Denmark one of the world’s most successful small countries. [...]

Kudos to Winston Peters

Winston Peters’ comments on the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre were candid. Where Western politicians have turned not upsetting China over its human rights record into an art form, the Foreign Minister left diplomatic niceties behind. [...]

Making sense of the European elections

If you are a New Zealander watching this strange post-EU elections process with a sense of disbelief from afar, do not be too puzzled: Most Europeans do not understand it either. [...]