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Analysis and Comment (17)

The taxpayer ends up footing the bill anyway. The taxpayer ends up footing the bill anyway. EPA

One day we’ll kick ourselves for scrapping collective insurance

After initially celebrating the new-found freedom to spend their pension savings how they want, people are now waking up to what scrapping the annuity really meant. One reason for forcing people to buy…
A Cooktown home which lost its roof to Cyclone Ita, although damage was less widespread than feared. A Cooktown home which lost its roof to Cyclone Ita, although damage was less widespread than feared. AAP Image/Dan Peled

How building codes save homes from cyclones, and how they don’t

During Queensland’s preparations for Severe Tropical Cyclone Ita, Queensland Premier Campbell Newman advised residents who lived in older houses (those built before 1985) to evacuate their homes as they…
Is the government’s scheme already in deep water? Is the government’s scheme already in deep water? Steve Parsons/PA

Government flood insurance plan is already treading water

The government’s long-awaited plans on how to help the insurance industry provide flood insurance to those homes and properties most at risk was presented. They are promising, but have fundamental shortcomings…
Yesterday’s early start to the bushfire season threatened homes in Sydney’s suburbs. Yesterday’s early start to the bushfire season threatened homes in Sydney’s suburbs. AAP Image/Dean Lewins

Fire and flood: how home insurance can help us adapt to climate change

Australia is a harsh and volatile environment, subject to extremes of fire and flood. We’ve just seen a particularly early start to the bushfire season, with over 60 fires burning and at least two homes…
Lloyds bank faces PPI redress claims. Lloyds bank faces PPI redress claims. Betty Longbottom

Embattled banks: Hester departs RBS and Lloyds hit by PPI scandal

Whether it is due to benchmark rigging, massive payouts to top executives, or failures to lend to house-buyers and businesses, the banking sector continues to make the headlines for all the wrong reasons…
Cost was one of the reasons why Queenslanders remained uninsured for flood damage but there were other surprising factors. Cost was one of the reasons why Queenslanders remained uninsured for flood damage but there were other surprising factors. AAP

Why are so many Queenslanders still without flood insurance?

Queensland towns and suburbs have been hit by floods again. Flooding is not a rare event here and most residents are not surprised by the recurrence of floods. But the memory of the 2011 floods is still…
As natural disasters happen more often, rising insurance premiums will force the private sector to take action on climate change. As natural disasters happen more often, rising insurance premiums will force the private sector to take action on climate change. AAP

Climate change is everybody’s business

Hurricane Sandy may or may not be a direct result of climate change, but what is certain is that the incidence of extreme climate events is increasing. Such events are predicted by climate models, according…
An increasing trend towards more frequent and severe bushfires has created uncertainty over insurance coverage. An increasing trend towards more frequent and severe bushfires has created uncertainty over insurance coverage. AAP

Bushfire losses reignite debate about insurance reform

The Australian summer has become synonymous with bushfire risk. Tasmania, New South Wales and Victoria have witnessed devastating bushfires generating millions of dollars of damage. Many individuals have…
How much is enough to compensate someone who is about to die for allowing someone else to financially benefit from their death? How much is enough to compensate someone who is about to die for allowing someone else to financially benefit from their death? leiris202/Flickr

Death and the market: the peculiar dealings of Joseph Caramadre

Is profiting from the deaths of others wrong? In an interview on This American Life, Joseph Caramadre maintains it’s not. At least, he says, “Not if it’s done morally, ethically, and legally.” This month…
The new normal? … Climate change will be at the forefront of discussion in the weeks following Hurricane Sandy. The new normal? … Climate change will be at the forefront of discussion in the weeks following Hurricane Sandy. Wandering the World/Flickr

After the deluge, what hope the politics of climate response?

I am writing with Hurricane Sandy having brought devastation to New York and the East coast of the United States. Much has been written on the politics of climate change. But until a few days ago, a severe…
If health and water reform are anything to go by, COAG is in for a challenge. If health and water reform are anything to go by, COAG is in for a challenge.

The rocky road to a national disability insurance scheme

The stakes are high for today’s Council of Australian Government (COAG) meeting in Canberra, as it decides how to respond to the Productivity Commission’s report into disability care and support in Australia…
The proposed scheme will address unmet demand and standardise assessment and entitlements. The proposed scheme will address unmet demand and standardise assessment and entitlements. laembajada/Flickr

Productivity Commission hastens slowly on National Disability Insurance Scheme

The Productivity Commission has released its report on Disability Care and Support, which recommends the creation of a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) to provide insurance cover for about 410,000…