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US jobless claims fall; US producer prices jump; Canada producer prices leap; commodity price rises take a breather; Aussie inflation expectations ignore global moves; UST 10yr at 1.67%; oil falls back and gold holds; NZ$1 = 71.7 USc; TWI-5 = 73.6

US jobless claims fall; US producer prices jump; Canada producer prices leap; commodity price rises take a breather; Aussie inflation expectations ignore global moves; UST 10yr at 1.67%; oil falls back and gold holds; NZ$1 = 71.7 USc; TWI-5 = 73.6

Here's our summary of key economic events overnight that affect New Zealand with more indications price rises are spreading.

But first in the US, they reported a good reduction in the number of jobless claims for last week, even less than the decline expected. There are now 3.7 mln people on these benefits and back to a similar level a year ago, just as the pandemic was threatening to bite. But it is still twice as high as the pre-pandemic levels.

And staying in the US, producer prices are up +6.2% in April from a year ago, a sharp rise from the already-high +4.2% gain they reported for March. Prices are rising fast, in ways that seem temporary, yet this could change expectations in ways that are self-reinforcing.

Consumer prices are getting no respite in the US following the oil pipeline hack there. Temporary sure, but it is feeding rising price expectations. Still, Fed officials don't see the pressures embedding.

There was another big US Treasury bond issue today, this time for US$44 bln for their 30 year maturity. US$14 bln was allocated to the US Fed. The median yield was 2.315% compared to the same issue a month ago at 2.23% pa. This one wasn't quite as popular with 'only' US$74 bln being bid.

In Canada, they reported their producer price data for April as well, and it was up an eye-watering +14% from a year ago. That leap is their largest in more than 40 years and was driven primarily by lumber prices, itself driven by housebuilding demand in the US. Dairy, meat and fish prices also rose sharply but nothing like the timber prices.

In China, foreign direct investment rose +39% in the year to April, but that is a leveling off of the +44% rate in the year to March.

The iron ore price is taking a breather, falling from US$230/tonne yesterday to US$218/tonne today. Obviously it can't keep rising at the vertical rate track it has been on. Copper is showing the same sign.

In Australia, the expectations for inflation are quite different, and no-one sees it on the horizon. The RBA survey of economists see it at +1.7% in a year. The same survey of union officials pegs it at just +1.5%. The Melbourne Institute consumer survey has it up at +3.2% but that is unchanged from a year ago. Current CPI inflation in Australia is +1.1% pa.

On Wall Street, the S&P500 is no longer falling, up +0.7% in afternoon trade from the prior day, but the impetus is leaking away as the session progresses. Overnight in European markets rose +0.2% although London fell another -0.6%. Yesterday, the very large Tokyo market fell by another -2.5%, but Hong Kong was down -1.8% for the day, and Shanghai was down -1.0%. The ASX200 ended down another -0.9% while the NZX50 Capital Index fell another -1.1%.

The latest global compilation of COVID-19 data is here. The global tally is still rising, now 160,621,000 people have been infected at some point, up +776,000 in one day, still largely driven by rises in India and Brazil. Global deaths reported now exceed 3,335,000 and up +14,000 in one day. Vaccinations in the world are also rising fast, now up to 1.373 bln (+28 mln per day), and in the US almost half of their population (46.9%) have had at least one dose as they keep up their fast rollout. Now more than one third have been fully vaccinated (119.1 mln people). The number of active cases there has fallen to 6,371,000 (-30,000) with fewer new infections than recoveries recently and steadily improving progress.

The UST 10yr yield starts today at 1.67% and down -1 bp from this time yesterday. The US 2-10 rate curve is marginally flatter at +151 bps. Their 1-5 curve is also slightly flatter at +79 bps, while their 3m-10 year curve is now at +167 bps. The Australian Govt ten year benchmark rate is down -1 bp at 1.75%. The China Govt ten year bond is up +1 bp at 3.16%. And the New Zealand Govt ten year is up +4 bps at 1.89%.

The price of gold starts today virtually unchanged at US$1823/oz.

Oil prices start today giving up all of yesterday's rise, and more, down -US$3 at just over US$63.50/bbl in the US, while the international Brent price is just under US$67/bbl.

The Kiwi dollar opens today stable at 71.7 USc. Against the Australian dollar we are back up to 93 AUc. Against the euro we are marginally firmer at 59.4 euro cents. That means our TWI-5 starts today at 73.6.

The bitcoin price is now at US$48,183 and a huge -12.3% lower than this time yesterday. Volatility in the past 24 hours has been a extreme +/- 9.6%. The bitcoin rate is charted in the exchange rate set below.

The easiest place to stay up with event risk today is by following our Economic Calendar here ».

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98 Comments

12
up

House Price softening is a smoke to convince RBNZ, not to act though Mr Orr needs no convincing as he himself is a part of the group / speculator.

https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976518606/house-prices-havent-droppe...

Landlords, eh? Bound to be totally unbiased. Let's see what they're saying in a year.

The sceptic inside reckons in a year they'll probably be saying, "negative rates and RBNZ support sees house prices reach new highs!"

I think the question that we will be asking is "Does that Ferrari come in red with white pinstripes? Huge Labour government fan."

Not exactly small increases in some of these places. Geez they must be wealthy people in Gisborne and Dunedin!

I think when it comes to the word 'crisis' it is often overused. In hindsight what happened under Key should be labelled a housing 'problem', but under Adern, Robbo, and Orr is has become a 'crisis'.

• Gisborne: with a 72.5% increase from $400,000 in April 2020 to $690,000 in April 2021, the third month in a row this region has reached a record.
• Otago: with a 58.8% increase from $447,000 in April 2020 to $710,000 in April 2021. Additionally, Dunedin City ($621,120) and Queenstown-Lakes District ($1,200,000) reached record median highs for the second month is a row.

Where is your data from please ?

From the article Stuart posted above.

He's right, your posts are soporific, repetitive and generally not worthy of reading as you say the same thing every single time.

13
up

Eh, unnecessary. Don't engage if it bores you.

The spam is clogging up comments section. The BB spoke about ore prices, Aussie inflation and bitcoin. So why am I scrolling through post after post of the usual drivel on NZ house prices and Orr is the devil. Its the usual suspects in a mass circle jerk. Can't you all meet up and get it over and done with already?

10
up

Yeah it's a real shame the comment section isn't curated to whatever HeavyG wants.

No one is asking for a curated comments section, I can go to the FT for that. Tom comments relentlessly and repetitively and stopped contributing anything to the debate a while back. It's not what he says, rather the droll repetitive nature.

To you they are. To others they aren't.

Well I guess that comes down to the intellectual capacity of the reader and their critical reasoning skills. I generally only need to read something once, a few times at most. Which can only mean you're hear to moan and complain.

So what do say to CBWB who relentlessly posts the same stuff that property is always the best investment, no matter what the situation?
What about the pro-MMT crew, or PDK and his continual harping on the same theme?
I think I'm being singled out because I dare to criticise our 'bought & paid for' economists and financial journalists, and also the dangerous property lobby who have our politicians and media in their pocket.

Your ratio of posting to theirs would be 20:1 minimum, and I generally ignore them as well FWIW. It's a free world, carry on.

You targeted me personally off the back of an innocuous post where someone asked” where did you get your data from”? Bullying behaviour imo.

All bow down to The Kooti's intellectual capacity. Now why not use some of it to rise above it and get on with it?

The comments are nothing more than bullying.

Housing and low interest rates...they are topics that are not going away, however much you wish they would. Interestingly, this website styles itself as 'Interest', which seems to be a play on interest rates - the topics in the header are dominated by 'Property' / 'Borrowing' / 'Saving' / 'Banking' etc. You should get a clue from all that as to what people will be talking about here.

Who is right? I got asked where the data came from. You don't like data?

..actually I find them quite good as he gathers snippets that are out there, but many of us would miss. A good counter to the msm who continually rabbit on about property as a ladder.

... as far back into history as I can recall , house prices in Dunedin were about one half those of Christchurch ...

Now , Dunners is ahead of Chch .... WTF !!!! ... I'm guessing that supply of houses ramped up after the Canterbury earthquakes ... and , perhaps the internet means Dunedin isn't so isolated from the rest of the country as it once was .... but even so , gee whizz ... something's seriously dysfunctional in our real estate industry ...

I think you are right on the effect of the earthquake re-build, we were one of the many investors who built new properties in that season, capital appreciation has been near nil but the value to the community of seeing the re-build has been high. Christchurch changes every time I visit and while it will never be the same it is beginning to come back to life both in the centre and in the wider suburbs.

The internet doesn't change the weather....

... whether you like it or not , winter in Dunners kinda sucks ... and it lasts ... usually from March to December ...

A relative is just having finished built a 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom house in Rolleston on roughly 450sqm of land for low $400's. My 1980's 3 bedroom 1 bathroom on 800sqm in Masterton has passed $500k Mid-Range Core Logic valuation.

The new Dunedin hospital build and other projects are partly driving the increase in Dunedin house prices. Its a multi year project and I hear those involved are looking to buy a house than rent for multi years.

NZ house prices weren't even mentioned in the breakfast briefing. I know you love to whine but could you at least do your whinging in articles about housing and inflation. It bores me.

11
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"Let them eat cake" said HeavyG disdainfully.

19
up

You can't have high immigration with the spectre of COVID-19 and other potential pandemics looming. We are told we have to act with lock-downs and the'hard and early' stuff because our (already rickety) health system would struggle to cope, so it is highly irresponsible to bring in additional large numbers of people in such an environment. If the government ever wants to go back to 'open borders' - under political pressure from the 'alliance of convenience' of business & leftists - as we have seen under Key and Adern, then they should undertake to build 4 or 5 brand new hospitals first.

10
up

How about we print some money and build a few of decent hospitals, train some Dr's and nurses and give Pharmac the 400mln they need.
I heard on the news this morning, NZ ranked second to last in terms of pandemic preparedness.

And give every worker a blond/blonde and a Tesla. I really hope someone knows what they’re doing.

With 300k spent on My Food Bag for beneficiaries and food banks as reported in the Ferald, it appears no one knows what they're doing.

Just print some more money, she'll be right mate.

Expectations...
RNZ has an anonymous trade union ? Strategist writing.

https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/ldr/442434/public-sector-wage-freeze-doctors-...

Looks like Labour has triggered/activated everyone when they overpromised at elections - telling everyone how deserving they are, entitled. Emotionally saying "you are hard done by, you deserve it. - the rather than being you can do well, here's how.

GR, Stinky, Chippy are in a corner now, (people have seen the covid money tree/printer go brrrr) looking at a nurses strike (like 2018). The nurses will be first in (deservedly so, their condition is terrible), then everybody else (pile in/on).

We've got MMT people on here - a few of them - stating that the government i.e the Labour party, who has the reigns of power, can print as much money as they like and give it to whoever they like. These MMT 'thinkers' see no problem with it at all. That will not create any issues.

And like clockwork...

Nurses have voted to strike for an eight-hour period in a month's time over a breakdown in pay offer negotiations.

https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/442575/nurses-vote-to-strike-for-8-h...

A real fine Stinky mess.

Not to mention 12k on the turtle...

Virtually no-one does, but you are going to be hearing a lot more of "if we can just print money to pay for Utopia, why don't we?" and "why do we have to pay taxes if they can just print money?"

Contrary to popular belief, it turns out we don't pay much in taxes compared to most of our global peers. We may have no option but to borrow from future generations in order to afford a social system that matches international standards.

https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/300307246/heres-how-new-zealands-income...

This is a very strange reading of the article, we are taxed appropriately, the social benefits are such that net tax is much lower for more of the population.

Our tax system is extremely distributive and so we have "the top 3 per cent account for almost a quarter of all personal tax paid".
https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/opinion-analysis/114628351/an-inconveni...

You're right. Something for our pollies to think over - getting locals and importing migrants 'employed' in low-wage, seasonal work won't be as effective in bringing in more tax revenue or reducing welfare dependence as raising wages by growing productivity and skills should.

One of the best moves in response to COVID-19 from this government was to introduce the apprenticeship scheme but they want to end it next year instead of allowing it or at least a dialed down programme to run indefinitely.

The apprenticeship scheme was a good idea, shame to hear it is being wound down already. The cognitive dissonance between wanting to build infrastructure and removing an apprenticeship scheme is hard to comprehend.

My father created and lead two (or it might be three) of the major Industry Training Organisations (ITO's) in the 80's and 90's, these were great at focusing the industries they represented on growing home-grown talent. As we have changed to importing talent rather than growing our own these have all but disappeared. The ones dad created (and they were very big industries) have now gone.

MTP, this is the debate we should be having. As the sovereign owner of our dollar the Government can print as much as it needs. BUT it must still tax for a variety of reasons, including in part to ensure the international value of the currency is maintained. Therefore the vector for taxation changes, and is NOT to fund spending as has been indicated lately by our government when announcing the PS pay freeze. Stuff also is carrying a report today that NZ is one of the lowest countries in the OECD for income tax, but makes almost no mention of all the other taxes, such as GST, and other Government fees and charges.

I'm not sure I believe their comparative report, as a friend who is a recently retired American airline pilot, and has earlier this year did his tax return for the US, and his tax bill was just 10% of his income. Not sure what his federal or state taxes will do to this, but that is still pretty low.

'As the sovereign owner of our dollar the Government can print as much as it needs.'

No they can't just print 'whatever they need'. We the people own the the money. We decide if it has value. There will be an armed revolution in NZ if we get to the stage where finance ministers just create money and give it to whoever they like. That is the surest and quickest killer of democracy. If governments have to fund themselves via the bond market and taxation then that means their profligacy and anti-democratic intentions can be curbed by the financial community and at the ballot box by the voters. QE is anti-democratic, but not yet the full measure when the finance minister can print money and hand it to his mates. You cannot give a governing political party theoretically unlimited funds to dish out to whoever they please.
MMT proponents say that if inflation kicks in then 'the government' simply just raises taxes. Again, the thinking is anti-democratic but worse, fails to see how democracy works. Any party proposing to levy a raft of new taxes would simply be voted from office. It wouldn't happen. MMT thinkers envisage an autocratic state where the government says 'you will accept this', but that is not how our system of government works. MMT has such large holes in it you could drive a panzer divison through them. But I think it's no mistake that Leftists are the prime movers behind MMT: they yearn for some sort of dictatorship that could fully implement MMT.

You don't get it do you Tom? The Government represents 'we the people' and in all things acts on our behalf. If you had read previous posts on this topic you would have realised that this debate acknowledges that there is no free lunch to printing money. There are huge costs and risks. But that doesn't mean it can't be done. But the whole point and purpose of taxation changes. You can't distort the discussion the way you have tried without exposing your ignorance and lack of understanding. Venezuela provides a very good example of what happens when there is unrestrained money printing that is not backed up in some way to support the value it represents.

QE is not anti democratic in itself. How it is applied however can be. "MMT proponents say that if inflation kicks in then 'the government' simply just raises taxes." No they don't. Your are just talking rubbish. "MMT thinkers envisage an autocratic state where the government says 'you will accept this', but that is not how our system of government works." again utter BS. You don't know what you are talking about at all.

But as it stands our Government should not be considering this anyway, as they have not shown the perspicacity to be able to do it responsibly.

Is he a tax resident in another country (e.g. does he live in NZ full time)? He may have tax credit for tax paid in his country of residence but as USA taxes based on citizenship has to pay an amount over and above due to a higher comparative USA rate.

It would be an interesting debate. My vague memories of living in London many years ago were higher income tax, a big tax called NI, VAT (20%?) and rates bills higher than Auckland (far higher when comparing the services provided). NZ has plenty of wasted govt spending but not exceptionally so compared to other governments.

not so vague - i came out 15 years ago -- took a 20% paytcut happily to be here -- and then found my paypacket was bigger here despite the cut!

NI was 13% to the employee and another 13% to the employer ( think acc levy) VAT / GST 17.5% ( the 20% was a temp thing)

We simply cant afford the waste though --- and at the moment the waste only seems to be increasing -- paying a Billion dollars in three months for emergency housing is wasteful -- but when its $285 a night for a motel room normally rented at $120 ( with longterm and high volume leverage) then its truly criminal!

I came back 16 years ago. In the UK I was taxed at 49%, VAT at 17.5% and when I filled up with Gas (taxed at 70%) it made my wonder why I bothered, certainly helped me in my decision to return.

I don't think the motels are a waste or criminal. People who may not have had a home at all or were previously living in old state houses will be very much enjoying the upgraded accommodation. Whilst expensive it is meeting the need and the cost may, may, give rise to some action in the government. It is an "awkward" amount of cash and is going to result in some action I think. I terms of the hoteliers charging too much, this may be true in some cases but in as many cases is due to the damage caused by the tenants. There is certainly a danger money and cost-of-damage component to the pricing.

"NZ ranked second to last in terms of pandemic preparedness" but ..
Oceania standouts: New Zealand and Australia
If there is a common theme emerging, it’s this—countries that responded earlier and aggressively tended to have better responses. If there’s a second theme, it’s that the Oceania countries of New Zealand and Australia have knocked it out of the park in terms of initial response… and from opposite sides of the political spectrum, no less.

Serious question.

Why would a qualified doctor waste their time staying here when this clown country has priced even doctors out of affording a decent home?

Going forward this country is going to have severe problems attracting and retaining quality talent.

Even with two very good professional incomes, Auckland prices look insane as an owner-occupier. The only way to square it is if you believe interest rates will stay very low indefinitely, or that sustained inflation is coming to inflate the principal away.

Energy costs and the perception of such will kill crypto. What a contradiction - the currency of the millennial age, yet a major contributor to their ‘great Satan’.

Yep, go Greta. The girl that killed BTC.

Elon is calling himself Greta these days?

Shhhhh, only Grimes calls him that. Musk is only the start, the woke gen won't be into coal fired BTC.

Energy costs and the perception of such will kill crypto

Bitcoin is the hardest money ever invented because of PoW. Using processing power to validate the network means BTC is pegged to a coefficient of supply * energy cost. BTC is a pure of store of value and has no other utility, so it makes complete sense that it should be tethered to energy and underpin the entire crypto network as a L0 store of value. Energy consumption is also decentralised and democratic, so as long as the profit of mining exceeds the cost (a paradigm that is built into the core BTC blockchain), BTC will continue to be a store of value.

$ETH is transitioning from PoW to PoS which makes sense because it is a smart contract platform that provides utility. If a token is neither tethered to a tangible commodity or providing programmatic utility it has no value.

The internet is an INFORMATION network that uses multiple layers to transmit DATA from TCP/IP to HTTP. Blockchain is a MONETARY network that uses multiple layers to transmit VALUE from BTC to [in-progress].

all money is ultimately bad for the planet
But i dont think anyone clambering to get rid of money?

There's more than one type of crypto, and there's plenty of energy-efficient alternatives to bitcoin. The original Benz sucked compared to a 1999 Toyota Corolla, but that doesn't mean we gave up on cars after we made the first one.

Yes the energy requirements of crypto in general could be OK. It's just that btc is poor in that regard, and currently dominant.

Do we need crypto? Maybe. I see its allure, but also reasons to expect that it will never be widespread. (For instance, how many people will ever be confident enough of their digital security to hold large amounts?)

Giving crypto in general the benefit of the doubt, is bitcoin the crypto we need? No, IMO.

The question is more...
A centralised currency (cryto or otherwise) compared to a decentralized currency.

Its funny imagine climate alarmists going against BTC. (Imagine who else would favour such?).

They’ll wait till prices double before acting. Fancy a $10 coffee. 6 pack of beer $30. Big Mac $15.

By the horse will be 10 km's up the road.

only if it walks backwards

I think you're right. RB is so wedded to the idea that low interest rates are CRUCIAL, CRUCIAL to the economy that they won't be raised until the CPI has been redlining for months and months. In many ways it's a naturally deflationary environment, but I think the mental inflexibility of central banks -- after decades of failing to create inflation, and competing to weaken rather strengthen currencies -- will allow inflation to become a genuine problem anyway.

Bought a beverage this morning as sometimes do when I forget one from home. Up 50 cents or 12.5% from a month ago.

Reviewed some costs for a future project last looked at 3 years ago. Up 21% and noted risk that as its still 2 years away - escalations might impact contingencies.

Not just costs ether, try getting supplies into the country, the ability to access resources of all kinds will be the biggest risk for projects I reckon.

"RB is so wedded to the idea that low interest rate are Crucial.. "

WTF
Raising interest rates in any way for long will blow the whole god damn party to pieces
Its not an idea
Its a given

We need more debt
Otherwise we have to acknowledge we are collectively insolvent

In China, foreign direct investment rose +39% in the year to April, but that is a leveling off of the +44% rate in the year to March.
MSCI China Enters Bear Market After Tech Selloff/

Is anyone still peddling bitcoin here? I hope you removed "independence from politics" from your list of pros.
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-57096305
If one sentence from one person can change the price by 10+% it's not really independent, is it?

Bitcoin the network dont care, price doesnt bother it. It just keep on running, producing a new block every 10 min. Largest difficulty adjustment in history yesterday of +21.5% tells you a lot more about how it is actually going.

If Bitcoin doesn't evolve away from being so power hungry the exchanges will be regulated and taxed to punish its usage.

It's just a matter of time.

in the words of George Michael, a currency gotta have faith
otherwise it aint worth squat

Peddling Bitcoin? No just converting paper FIAT before in inflates to fairy dust.

Old pump and dump Elon. He's just bitter because BTC made him more money than selling Teslas.

Hard but fair

Let me get this straight. Your contention is that Elon Musk is disingenuously attacking bitcoin (which TSLA still appears to hold but is no longer accepting) in order to drive its price down, because... holding bitcoin made him too much money?

If you know that TSLA is holding its reserves of BTC then I have it wrong. Do you know this? I would have expected him to have sold before such an announcement. If not then it's just another example of Musk making a market affecting announcement that negatively affects his shareholders. Those shareholders are happy with an estimated P2E of 921.7 this year so they are long suffering lot.

His Tweet clearly stated Tesla still holds all of its Bitcoin.

Except the bitcoin that was already sold.

Ambiguous I agree. But even if they did sell nearly all of it, what, exactly, is the motivation?

He's just bitter because BTC made him more money than selling emissions credits which made him more money than selling Teslas.

Very sad to hear the news that comedian David McPhail has died ... the actual Rob Muldoon is long gone ... his best impersonator is now gone ... but ....

... Robbo the third lives on , resurrecting the grand old days of freezes , handouts , and tax increases ... bless him !

RIP David

We are heading into a highly inflationary environment. The thing that has stopped it running away has been technology but everything has its limits. The push now will to be deliberately increase inflation across the board and the government will not want to hold it back. The likes of the USA now has to try and inflate its way out of debt.

I agree this is the plan but there are some hurdles. Last time we rolled out this plan (80's) we had automation in factories (robots) and business processing (e.g. pre 80's banks were awash with staff managing manual ledgers, cheques etc) and boomers coming into their earning prime to help out. This time around we don't appear to have the same growth levers to pull. Asset prices already beyond affordability, wages depressed through the "miracle" of globalisation and an aging population in China and the West.

I think the real plan is an aggressive interest spike followed by an everything crash in asset valuations with a return to the norm, a non-inflationary period of at least a couple of decades. My Grandfather made sure I understood that for most of his life there was no such thing as inflation and that when it arrived in the 70s (Gold base of dollar disappeared) it devalued labour and led to some of the protests that ended the UK's industry sectors in the middle and late 70s.

Anyone invested in copper/miners? Or have any advice recommendations on investing in that area?

Have invested in Australian mining / prospecting operations in the past. Mainly in companies that were in the early stages of evaluating a resource and looking for startup funding. Can be a very good wicket once you get your eye in for the industry. Learn to read JORC reports and familiarise yourself with the approval processes, it varies state by state and often requires consent of local tribes. Plenty of forums dedicated to discussing these companies if you're keen, prepare to do a lot of reading.

I concur - I have little experience of this but the number of miners just on the ASX is intimidating. The easiest exposure is probably through SmartShares aussie resources tracker which owns a wide variety of miners (not specifically copper) - tracker code ASR on the NZX. Not recommending as I've not looked at them for a while and not sure what they are holding, but an easy way to get a spread of miners without having to do so much research.

Interesting article on income tax in Stuff
https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/300307246/heres-how-new-zealands-income...
Taxes in aussie a lot higher than here...

Here's the last, last, final, last, article busting the myth of BTC energy consumption. https://pomp.substack.com/p/bitcoin-mining-and-elon-musk.

Honestly though, at this point if you believe that BTC is an environmental stumbling block you're either an idiot or have your head in the sand and aren't interested in anything other than your own views.

You can say it's a "busted myth" all you want, but it clearly isn't. That's just a hodgepodge of evasion, obfuscation, and speculation. Mining consumes huge amounts of energy. That energy is not coming back out of the mining rigs. It certainly isn't all renewable energy, and even if it were, mining is still contributing to aggregate energy demand and it is not just mopping up an unwanted surplus.

You fall into the "have your head in the sand" camp. It's blatantly obvious you didn't read the linked article based on your comment. Please stay out of the discussion if you won't read the material.

I read it, actually, though I wish I hadn't bothered. It's the usual nonsense, plus some pretty wild speculation about Elon Musk's motives.

If you want to try to argue that BTC has sufficient value that it's worth this energy cost, that's an argument that can be made. Maybe. But pretending that it doesn't have an energy cost because there's a tiny amount done from flared gas is disingenuous.

// edited as my previous response wasn't kind or constructive

I never said BTC had no energy cost (and it's disingenuous of you to suggest that), rather that energy is democratic, and there is a direct relationship between the cost of energy production and btc, so it is perfect as a L0 value store in the crypto monetary network. PoW will drive innovation as business and government find cheaper more efficient ways to produce and store electricity. Using gas flaring is just one small example of this.

By your same logic Elon should stop producing Tesla's as their energy cost far exceeds BTC. But in reality, Tesla and PoW are two sides of the same complimentary coin. Shifting incumbent systems towards new better technologies. Because they're complimentary, I don't think Pomp's theory about Elon throwing shade on btc energy consumption to swoop in with an energy efficient mining solution linked to excess energy output from a powerwall is far fetched at all. In fact it fits perfectly with his ego driven narcissistic messiah complex.

I'm increasingly skeptical that the majority of kiwis are open minded and studious enough to change their minds on anything these days. We're at the end of our current 100 year oil age seculum and crypto will underpin the next information age seculum. Energy production will be the key driver of this next age. PoW provides the financial incentive to shift systems - it's the entrepreneurs, not the beaurecrats that deliver real change. And finally, if you don't believe Bitcoin has utility as a store of value ask yourself: what would be the best store of value for space travel?