Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Lab-rat once more...

Well, Godzone is yet again the Social Lab-Rat:
  1. Vastly increased minimum wage will test the wage costs/employment offerings/inflation balance
  2. Extension of ETS in some form or another to agriculture will test the production quantity versus production mix equation
  3. Industry-wide wage bargaining will test the definition of 'industry' and will provide a field day for re-describers of various stripes
  4. SME's will boom but as sole traders/franchisees/mom-and-pop outfits, because the disincentives for employing staff are far too great - a good test of #1
  5. Big increase in regional construction and fit-out as regionalisation takes off - but the real test will be of productivity (the local example is the Christchurch re-build, now petering out)
  6. Minimum wage rises are a classic universal pricing signal for sectors highly exposed to labour costs, without attracting anti-trust/cartel accusations, so expect a raft of 'em
  7. A billion trees sounds marvellous, but to get 'em planted in deserving areas (e.g. north and west of Gisborne) means long days in hot sun, on 45 degree slopes, living in work camps and plonking in 100 trees/day. There would have to be 4550 such plonkers, working 220 days each year, to achieve the 100m trees per annum. Compulsory (because how else ya gonna get them trees planted? Nicely configured ads on Seek?) tree-plonking, attractive, much? Oh, and the cost? 4550*8*220*20 = $160m and change per annum...just for the warm bodies.  Add supervisors, transport, packed lunches, Elfin Safety and whatnot, and it well be well north of $200m.
Bring popcorn....

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