Commonwealth Bank of Australia Presentation & Cocktail 2019, 6 June 2019
ABIE Annual Sponsor Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) once again treated ABIE members and CBA clients to an insightful Economic Briefing by Chief Economist Michael Blythe.
On 6 June at the Shangri-la Hotel in Paris, Mr Blythe highlighted the often-times competing indicators of Australia’s economic strength, neatly summed up by the theme, “Unintended Consequences”.
Francois Heritier, CBA’s Executive Director Head FX Sales Europe, extended a warm welcome to guests, with a particular word of thanks for the support of ABIE President, Bernard Tabary, and Deputy Head of Mission at the Australian Embassy Paris and Australian Ambassador to UNESCO, Angus Mackenzie.
The Briefing commenced with an overview of Australian trends such as solid job growth, rising national income and consistent commodity prices, set against wage concerns and income distribution that does not benefit households.
Mr Blythe commented that Australia is seeing a growing pessimism around global issues such as trade wars, geopolitical uncertainty, the slowing Chinese economy, Brexit and financial market volatility.
A range of “unintended consequences” is contributing to the risks in the Australian economic story, but, interestingly, some of these unintended consequences are also helping.
Citing the slowing Chinese economy that has resulted in some commodity friendly results for Australia, Mr Blythe went on to explain more localised trends such as financial stability but a negative “wealth effect” (increasing savings that results in lower consumer spending and consumer-related borrowing), employment and wage trends, infrastructure investment, and industry changes.
The engaging presentation was followed by an enjoyable cocktail reception at which guests were able to network and make new contacts.
CBA has been the Annual Sponsor of ABIE France since 2012, a partnership that has enhanced ABIE’s capabilities to benefit its members whilst giving CBA sustained visibility in France throughout the year.