EDITOR'S PICKS

In this week's essential reading guide, Koukoulas ponders the dollar's potential, Gottliebsen runs over some energy omissions, Bartholomeusz analyses a banking backdown and Kirby ponders Twiggy's realm.

How high can the Aussie dollar go?
Stephen Koukoulas
The end of the Reserve Bank's cutting cycle, US budget reforms and a stabilising global economy and all set the stage for a stronger local currency – and it could lift as far as $US1.25.

Painful extraction from an energy morass
Robert Gottliebsen
With even modest policy skills Australia could have enjoyed the energy benefits the US is preparing for. Instead, just about everything we've done has been wrong – and the inevitable clean-up will be monumental.

Basel's not-so-brave new world
Stephen Bartholomeusz
Despite the initial grand designs, compromise – and lobbying – has prevailed as the global banking industry shifts ever so slowly towards more conservative, post-crisis settings.

King of the iron ore cash pile
James Kirby
The skyrocketing iron ore price gives Fortescue's Andrew Forrest his best chance yet to become one of Australia's top tier industrialists.

Shouting down Barnaby's debt dilemma
Rob Burgess
Labor has been increasing national debt against a shrinking economy and a low tax base, and while we may need to increase taxes, Barnaby Joyce is right – we should stop borrowing.

Kloppers' accidental recipe for riches
Robert Gottliebsen
As luck would have it, failure of some plum opportunities for BHP Billiton paved the way to Marius Kloppers' shale coup. Now the miner has the chance for an even bigger slice of the action.

Australand door opens for GPT and rivals
Stephen Bartholomeusz
Australand in December dismissed GPT's healthy offer for its investment and industrial portfolio. But the game is back on as the property group's key Singaporean shareholder looks set to cash out.

Six headwinds blow a US chill
Ziggy Switkowski
A provocative new study suggests America has maxed out its productivity gains and is in for a period of probable decline. And it paints a similar, but less dire, future for Australia.

Stock market supercharge waits on the sideline
Stephen Koukoulas
As the US and China signal improvement, stocks and bonds are starting to price in decent economic growth. But markets are likely to be particularly fickle as they countenance a swing towards equities.

Kerry's mandate for a cyber-China crackdown
John Lee
There are growing claims that China is, via cyber-espionage, building its economy on the private sector secrets of America. The issue looks set to lead Secretary John Kerry's priorities in his new role.

Labor's menacing tax memo to the world
Alexander Liddington-Cox
The decision to raise Australia's withholding tax on foreign investment brings it into line with other countries but creates a terrible dilemma for institutional investors.

Why forecasting has broken down
Stephen Grenville
Predictions about the global recovery have been proven woefully incorrect due to misunderstandings of both fiscal policy and the power of expansionary monetary policy.

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