Archive for the 'Economics' Category

We have the right to celebrate May 9. It is after all the first time in Malaysian history change at the very top happened. For years we were only chipping at the edge. Progress felt irrelevant. But now, here it is. Change. Yet, not all or even most of the changes Malaysia needs have been […]

I consider myself lucky. I have gotten enough education opportunities to ride on the benefits of globalization and technological changes. So big are the benefits I have reaped that I think I could travel around the world tomorrow if I wanted to without worrying too much about my financial obligations back home. If I lost […]

Two of Pakatan Harapan’s ten big promises are the abolition of GST (returning to the SST regime) and the reintroduction of fuel subsidy.[1] While I can agree with most of its other proposals that include credible investigations into various financial scandals besetting the Barisan Nasional government, I oppose these two policies. With respect to the […]

It is the final GDP release before the year goes to the dogs! The Department of Statistics will announce the fourth quarter figures tomorrow at noon. Before that, let us play a game: For some context, the year 2017 was a pretty good year for GDP growth. It came after a pretty bad two-year period […]

It is fashionable in certain circles these days in Malaysia to question the reliability of GDP as a measure of welfare. They say they do not feel GDP growth and they prefer something like household income or wage statistics to a measure that is hard to understand. The more extreme criticism goes to claim GDP […]

The Malaysian GDP has been growing strongly so far this year. So strong, that a lot of economists and institutions had to revise their 2017 projections significantly. The growth has been partly due to consumption recovery that took a tumble thanks to the GST, and partly due to strong trade figures (though this is true […]

There were a lot of talks about the budget recently. About those by the opposition and by the government. The opposition may have to improve on its budget quality especially on the assumptions made, but I believe the annual tabling of such alternative is healthy and is a positive development in our increasingly flawed democracy. […]

Some opposition politicians and supporters are prone to exaggerate when it comes to economic matters. Malaysia is bankrupt, there is no income growth, etc. Those exaggerations make it easy for the Barisan Nasional government to disprove those allegations. But in its eagerness to do so, the government oftentimes denies that any problem even exists. This […]

Bruce Gale wrote a piece in the Straits Times defending Najib’s economic policy recently. While I do agree with on points like subsidy removal, I have several issues with the article. The one I take the most exception is his claim that the goods and services tax (GST) was needed because Malaysians were avoiding income tax, […]

Bank Negara Malaysia is having none of it. They are tired of people blaming them (too much) for the generally weak residential property market in the country. In its 1Q17 Quarterly Statistical Bulletin, BNM wrote housing loan approval rate over the past few years had not fallen, citing statistics that 74.2% of all applications were […]

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