David Plank, Head of Australian Economics at ANZ. Source: Linkedin. High rise apartments in Brisbane’s West End. Picture: Mark Calleja.And despite the doom and gloom around Brisbane’s inner-city apartment market, Mr Gradwell said those oversupply concerns were no longer warranted, with attached dwelling completions reaching a peak in 2017.“Even though there’s still a strong pipeline of work in 2018 and 2019, the worst of that supply increase is behind us,” Mr Gradwell said.“We’re seeing demand is picking up now because Brisbane and the rest of Queensland’s population growth is really improving and confidence is pretty strong and that’s likely to accelerate.” OWNERS PAID THOUSANDS, SOLD FOR MILLIONS In good news for property investors in Brisbane, new figures from SQM Research show the rental vacancy rate fell to 2.9 per cent in May — the fifth straight monthly decline. “We believe that a rise in interstate migration is lifting population growth rates in Brisbane plus the peak in unit completions is creating this turnaround in the rental market,” SQM Research managing director Louis Christopher said. Brisbane home prices have only declined modestly. Image: AAP/Glenn Hunt.ABS chief economist Bruce Hockman said regulatory changes and tighter lending conditions had continued to impact investors, who were more active in the Sydney and Melbourne markets than Brisbane.“These cities have seen strong price growth over recent years particularly in detached dwellings,” Mr Hockman said. RENOVATION ADDS $158,000 TO SALE In its report, ANZ said “weakness in Australia’s housing market has persisted longer than we expected” and now sees the RBA starting to raise rates in August 2019, not May as originally predicted, with a second rate hike in November.The bank expects home prices around the country to fall by 4 per cent in 2018 and a further 2 per cent in 2019. The Reserve Bank of Australia kept interest rates on hold at 1.5 per cent at its last board meeting. Image: AAP/Peter Rae.But ANZ’s head of Australian Economics, David Plank, said he did not expect that to derail Australia’s economic outlook because it reflected a regulatory-induced tightening in the supply of credit rather than tighter monetary policy.“We think, as a result, that the impact on the economy will be less pervasive,” he said. A house for sale in the Brisbane suburb of Stafford. Image: AAP/Glenn Hunt.HOUSE prices in Sydney and Melbourne are set to slump 10 per cent as the nation faces a property correction, but Brisbane will be“insulated” from the storm, one of the nation’s biggest banks predicts.A report released by ANZ Bank reveals it expects the Queensland capital’s improving economy and population growth to “soften the extent of near-term price falls” driven by tighter credit and higher interest rates next year. GET THE LATEST REAL ESTATE NEWS DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX HERE ANZ senior economist Daniel Gradwell said Brisbane was in a much better position than Sydney and Melbourne, with home prices likely to stabilise — not fall — in 2019.“Brisbane hasn’t seen the same growth, so it’s likely to be insulated from that,” Mr Gradwell said. ANZ Bank has downgraded its outlook for house prices. Image: AAP/Joel Carrett.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus18 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market18 hours agoIt comes as official figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday show residential property prices fell 0.7 per cent nationally in the first three months of the year — led by the two biggest cities.Sydney recorded the third straight quarter of falling property prices (-1.2 per cent) and the first annual price fall (-0.5 per cent) since the March quarter of 2012, while Melbourne home prices fell 0.6 per cent.Brisbane home prices also declined 0.6 per cent during the quarter, but they are up 1.6 per cent on the same time a year ago. LAVISH BRISBANE SKY HOME SELLS AT HUGE DISCOUNT
Family First NZ has been in attendance at the World Congress of Families in Georgia. The event was hosted by Levan Vasadze (shown left, and below with Bob McCoskrie). His son was in the Auckland Rugby Academy, and we met him in Utah last year. We even watched the Rugby World Cup final together (he was supporting the All Blacks) and gave him an All Blacks shirt.Family First NZ is a partner of the World Congress (a fact that will send Craig Young in to a hissy fit).Background:The WCF regards the natural family as “the fundamental social unit, inscribed in human nature, and centred on the voluntary union of a man and a woman in the lifelong covenant of marriage. The natural family is defined by marriage, procreation and, in some cultures, adoption. Free, secure, and stable families that welcome children are necessary for healthy societies. History has shown that those societies that abandon the natural family as the norm are destined to decline and even extinction. The loving family reaches out in love and service to their communities and those in need. All social and cultural institutions should respect and uphold the rights and responsibilities of the family.”Central to the mission of the World Congress of Families is the celebration of and advocacy for the natural family, described by the 1948 United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights as “the natural and fundamental group unit of society” and, as such, “entitled to protection by society and the state.” The UN declaration also observes that “men and women of full age…have the right to marry and found a family.” And the WCF believes the natural family is the foundation of a free and prosperous society, as well as the cradle of civilization. It is also far and away the best environment in which to raise children.The WCF is an affiliation of scholars, government and ecclesiastical leaders, as well as advocates who focus on all issues relevant to the welfare of children and family. At present, it has 42 organizations in 14 countries, on five continents, affiliated as partners. From 1997 to 2015, WCF held eight international Congresses—Prague (1997), Geneva (1999), Mexico City (2004), Warsaw (2007), Amsterdam (2009), Madrid (2012), Sydney (2013) and Salt Lake City, Utah, USA in 2015 – and now Georgia in 2016.
The 44-year-old will send his relegation-haunted side into the white-hot cauldron of Newcastle’s St James’ Park on Sunday admitting that the Tyne-Wear showdown, which this year could have significant consequences for the respective participants, represents as difficult a test as any he has faced in his career to date. Di Canio said: “I can’t wait, I can’t wait. We live for it. We live to win cups or we live to qualify for the Europa League, to play in the Champions League, we live to play at the top level. But you know here, the result can change the mood for the derby next year because there is a joke between the fans. They work together at the office.” He added: “I know what is going on – in Rome it is similar, even if here it is more tough because we are talking about two different cities very close. This one is very, very tough. We know for what reason – Celtic v Rangers, there is a fire in this derby for not only sports reasons, we all know this. “But this one is one of the toughest, in my opinion, in the world and I am more than happy to have this chance.” Di Canio, of course, is a man who wears his heart on his sleeve, sometimes to his detriment, but he knows derby day is one for cool heads. Sunderland came close to snatching their first win on Tyneside since November 2000 last season despite having Stephane Sessegnon sent off 13 minutes after the break, and skipper Lee Cattermole followed him after the final whistle following Shola Ameobi’s last-gasp equaliser. And the Italian admits discipline will be key to his side’s hopes this time around. When it was suggested to him that he had been an excitable player himself, Di Canio replied with a smile: “Just a few times. “We know what happened last year. It wasn’t a very friendly game. We have to make sure, even if I can’t wait – already it is easy to imagine that the players are going to give everything – but we have to show our character, we have to drive our energy in a positive way. “We know sometimes, some players can lose their temper maybe because they want to show the fans they can be proud of them, and they can do something that puts the team in trouble. I will try to persuade them to use their energy to score a goal and to defend well to beat them and maybe celebrate the victory.” Sunderland manager Paolo di Canio cannot wait to experience “one of the toughest” derbies in world football. Press Association
…legal challenge filed in High CourtThe Public Service Commission (PSC) has rescinded the promotion of a West Demerara Regional Hospital (WDRH) administrator after reports of fraudulent transactions at the institution.According to a source close to the investigation, doctors and staff of the WDRH made a decision to voice their complaints over the mismanagement of the facility to the Public Health Ministry. Guyana Times was told that the decision to bypass the administrator was as a result of constant drug shortages and malfunctioning of equipment at the health facility.After receiving many of these complaints in addition to the delay of some $7 million worth of drugs reportedly procured for the Hospital, the Ministry organised a team to launch an investigation into the administrator.The team without any notice visited the facility and reportedly discovered inconsistencies in records shown to them.A record book was photographed by the investigating team and the administrator’s records were compared with that of each department. The results reportedly varied significantly from each department’s record.The record book documents all activities of the hospital, including monies received and purchases.The source revealed that the following day, the team revisited the Hospital and the administrator was confronted. but could not say how the records were altered.As such, the PSC was informed of the findings which prompted the demotion of the administrator. However, the administrator has since moved to the High Court to have the decision of the PSC squashed as “cause for its decision was not outlined in the letter received”.The legal action also seeks to restrain the PSC from appointing a new administrator.According to legal documents seen by this newspaper, it was stated that without any prior notification and for reasons unknown to the applicant, the PSC sent a letter to the administrator, which purports to rescind his appointment as hospital administrator, reverting the applicant to the position of accounts clerk II with immediate effect.“The applicant was not afforded a hearing by the respondents, neither was any reason given for the said decision; that the constitutional tenure of the Public Service Commission had ended at the time when it made the decision…in the circumstances, the said decision of the PSC is contrary to the rules of natural justice, arbitrary, whimsical, capricious, in excess of and without jurisdiction, unconstitutional, unlawful, null, void and of no effect,” the legal challenge document stated.The administrator has been acting in the position at the Hospital since March 18, 2013.Just last May, doctors attached to the facility refused to commence duties, taking strike action as a result of failure on the part of the Public Health Ministry to address their numerous concerns, including security, drugs shortage and working conditions.