EDITORS' PICKS

In this week's essential reading guide, Kohler pushes for an independent infrastructure body, Gottliebsen queries whether the RBA has its finger on Australia's economic pulse, Bartholomeusz warns of dangers in currency and commodity markets and Maley outlines the potential for a crisis in China.

A future built on a better fund
Alan Kohler
The time has come for an independent infrastucture body that could reap future surpluses in preference to the Future Fund. It's a move that will ensure our development isn't hurt by incompetent governments.

CEO PULSE: Giving up the Gillard ghost
Alan Kohler
The two-speed economy is starkly evident in the Business Spectator Accenture CEO Pulse survey, with a greater number of Australia's top tier chiefs expressing deep concern about Gillard government policies and the future.

A slow RBA dawn
Robert Gottliebsen
Reading over the Reserve Bank's statement on monetary policy, there are a few signs that the bank is starting to understand the economic predicament facing Australia.

A resources tax by another name
Robert Gottliebsen
The carbon tax is simply the Gillard government's attempt to bring back the resource rent tax in its full force. This time Australia's coal and gas sector may have to take it on the chin.

Sucked into a commodities vacuum
Stephen Bartholomeusz
While some of the froth has been blown off the commodities bubble, it's probable that commodities and currency markets will be quite dangerous until the future course of US monetary policy is clear.

Macquarie's not the only fall guy
Stephen Bartholomeusz
The entire investment banking sector needs a decent pick-up in corporate and markets activity to generate respectable earnings growth.

China debt binge hides an imminent crisis
Karen Maley
China's reported bailout of local government debts is of a magnitude 1.5 times America's TARP and, if real progress is not made soon, a major financial crisis awaits.

Waging a battle against stalling productivity
Karen Maley
Australia's productivity growth is waning and, unless we make some tough decisions, we should expect higher inflation and smaller wage increases in the years ahead.

The NBN leak's hidden value
Rob Burgess
A closer look at the leaked NBN documents reveals that the pay deals associated with the venture are based on a framework that will actually contain NBN cost blow-outs rather than produce them.

Howard's 'evolution' was one-way
Rob Burgess
John Howard needs to publicly back the Coalition's stance on carbon for the credibility of the party and Tony Abbott. A decision not to would make further bloodletting in the Liberal party-room almost inevitable.

CLIMATE SPECTATOR: Carbon pricing lost in translation
Giles Parkinson
The Productivity Commission's report will do little to sway the views of the major protagonists in the climate debate. But we don’t have to wait for Equatorial Guinea to act before we price carbon.

TECHNOLOGY SPECTATOR: Merchant under fire in bank data breach affair speaks out
Charis Palmer
The trials of Crazy Sales boss David Yin highlight crucial gaps in online regulation.

Why Tiger is facing extinction
Antoine Hermens
Tiger Airways' strategy is based on the faulty idea that Asia-Pacific markets are no different to the US and Europe. Can the airline survive the squeeze of Virgin's Singapore Airlines deal?

Refuse the carbon tax's junk mail
Ziggy Switkowski
The open letter from economists supporting a carbon tax is irrelevant as its focus should have instead been an opinion on whether a tax is the best vehicle for change or merely pork barrelling.

The Dutch disease bogeyman
Olivier Blanchard
Capital flows costs are dependent on the institutional framework in each country and, while policymakers may fret about Dutch Disease, the costs related to it are actually not well established.

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