Will the Super Fund now follow its own advice and divest from coal?

Whenever we’ve asked the New Zealand Superannuation Fund what they’re doing about climate change, they’ve said they’re waiting for the Mercer report they’d backed to come out. Well it’s now out and it’s unequivocal about the impact of climate change – investing in fossil fuels is objectively bad for your returns. Mercer has made one […]

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Australia shows why we need a sovereign wealth fund now

Australia has not managed its great mining boom well, says HSBC’s chief economist for Australia and New Zealand, Paul Bloxham. When times are good, governments need to save for the bad times that will inevitably follow, and this can be done by establishing a sovereign wealth fund, he said. The Australian Government is now facing […]

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Govt managing our money for political ends

Treasury papers released under the Official Information Act show that it is providing advice on short-term measures the Government can employ to help it post a surplus this year. The advice includes possible savings from delaying the rebuild of Canterbury; delaying foreign aid expenditure; holding back ACC savings; and new taxes on alcohol, tobacco, and […]

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New York Green Bank off to a $1B start

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green Bank involvement and will result in an annual estimated reduction of 522,000 tonnes of carbon […]

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Solving child poverty in New Zealand

Fair-society-BLOGFEATURE

The Green Party has announced plans to raise the top tax rate on any income earned over $140,000 to 40 percent. This will have an impact on 3 percent of all taxpayers. We will redirect all new revenues raised into measures that will directly alleviate the causes of child poverty in New Zealand. We don’t believe […]

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Exports continue to simplify under National

Export data released today from Statistics New Zealand shows a continuing and disturbing trend in the New Zealand economy — we are exporting less high-valued manufactured goods (down 12.5 percent) and less high-valued manufactured goods as a proportion of total exports. The chart says it all: Compared to other small, developed economies — some of […]

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National’s innovation policy in three charts

If Steven Joyce is such a believer in innovation, why is he planning to cut his investment in innovation so dramatically? Here, in three charts, is what National’s long-term commitment to innovation looks like: 1. National will cut their investment in science and innovation by 21 percent, in real terms, out to 2023/24. 2. The […]

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Double win for Greens in economics this week

National has finally relented to years of Green Party pressure to put the Government’s banking contract to competitive tender. This banking contract – the largest, most lucrative banking contract in the country – has been held by Australian-owned Westpac Bank since 1989 and has never been retendered since then. In 2010, we disclosed this cosy […]

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Green bonds set to help finance green economy

Twenty-five of the world’s largest banks – including Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citi, JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, and Morgan Stanley – recently released the governance framework for a green bond market which is seeing billions of dollars flow into green economic opportunities around the world. While there are still some concerns with […]

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Why are we investing in coal?

The World Wildlife Fund have today revealed that over $1 billion of New Zealanders’ pension and accident insurance money is invested in companies directly mining for coal, oil, and gas — companies who’s future profitability depends on burning fossil fuels that have to stay in the ground if we are to avoid runaway climate change. […]

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National Provident Fund divests from cluster munitions

The Government guaranteed National Provident Fund has divested from companies producing cluster weapons, more than two years after the Cluster Munitions Prohibition Act became law making such investment illegal. The decision to divest from Lockheed Martin came after a letter from me asking them to do so. The NPF Fund Manager, Simon Tyler, said in […]

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Will Auckland’s housing price bubble be different this time round?

Maybe. Yesterday, the Reserve Bank signalled enough concern about rising house prices in Auckland that they spooked commentators with the possibility of early rises in the Official Cash Rate (OCR) and a more certain resolve to use complementary tools, like loan-to-value ratios. I have more hope following this statement that the Reserve Bank has learned […]

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Is Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Bill English a climate change denier?

Is the Deputy Prime Minister of our country a climate change denier? It may well be the case. During question time in Parliament yesterday I wanted to get into the lack of focus and inaction from this Government on climate change which is starkly highlighted by the suffering our drought-stricken farmers are going through. I […]

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Latest overseas investment decision ABBAsolutely stink

The Overseas Investment Office has just approved the sale of eight Waikato dairy farms comprising 3,205 hectares of land to a Swedish consortium. This decision follows last year’s contentious decision to allow Chinese Company Shanghai Pengxin to purchase the Crafar farms.  The 16 Crafar farms comprised nearly 8000 hectares of farmland. An overseas purchaser must […]

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The green economy: It’s the Green Party versus National, but where is Labour?

(Op-ed published in the Herald on 3 December 2012) Green development and green jobs provide a clear vision and economic direction for our nation. We can have good jobs without destroying the environment, and we can take advantage of the huge green economic opportunities overseas to supply exports with a premium. That’s what smart green […]

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The US experience of QE

The United States began their programme of quantitative easing (QE) late in 2008 as a response to the Global Financial Crisis (GFC). Since that time, the US Federal Reserve has purchased $1.9 trillion of assets, keeping their financial markets afloat and lowering the US exchange rate. A lower exchange rate helps exporters. I asked the […]

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Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Annual Reports

The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Annual Reports are hard to find and don’t seem to be available online, so we’ve uploaded them. Here they are: 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 Will post 2012 once available. Russel UPDATE 29/08/13: Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Annual Report […]

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