Alan Kohler is one of Australia’s most experienced business commentators. Alan has been a trusted source of investment advice to Australians for many years, and in 2005 he founded Eureka Report - Australia’s #1 online investment report. Along with Robert Gottliebsen and Stephen Bartholomeusz, Alan also founded Business Spectator, the popular business news and commentary website. Alan is the regular finance presenter on the ABC News and producer of the popular nightly graph (or two).
Behavioural economics has provided a vast improvement in our thinking about economic problems. Yet nothing in this research suggests governments should limit themselves to gently nudging us to better options, while leaving us free to make dumb choices too.
The Energy Supply Association has released a report spruiking the benefits of a shift to electric and natural gas fuelled vehicles, with bullish predictions of uptake even if government does little to encourage them.
The reason there is little incentive to export power to the grid is because as far as the poles and wires businesses are concerned it doesn't matter whether a generator is 100 kilometres away or just 10 metres up the road. A new regulatory rule could change this.
Energy efficiency ratings are compulsory on home sales in the UK, and have revolutionised the market there. While Australian ministers agreed to such a move back in 2004, home-buyers remain in the dark.
The electricity market’s method of quoting pricing to customers is a complete farce, with the standard offer usually an artificial construct that is seeing more and more weight being put on the fixed charge.
Victoria's deregulated power market is not the beacon of competition it's being made out to be - with prices there higher than in other states despite lower network costs. A review there is needed to determine why.
Big retailers and the AEMC have been pushing states to follow Victoria’s lead by removing retail price controls on the basis there's enough competition already. But Victoria's regulatory boss suggests otherwise.