National Economic Panel



ESA National Economic Panel Polls





Got an Idea?

Author's Name: Nicki Hutley
Date: Tue 04 May 2021

Nicki Hutley

Nicki Hutley

Nicki Hutley is a highly experienced economist, with broad-based expertise in both macroeconomics and microeconomic policy, gained over more than three decades in financial and investment markets and in economic consulting.  

After many years in the corporate world, including most recently as a partner with Deloitte Access Economics, Nicki is now an independent economist and keynote speaker. She also consults with Social Outcomes, developing and supporting social impact programs. In 2020, Nicki was appointed as a Councillor for the Climate Council and admitted as an expert faculty member (economics) to SingularityU Australia.

Nicki is a council member for the Economics Society of Australia(NSW) and the Australian Business Economists, and a Board member for One Million Women and the Financy Women’s Index.

Nicki is a frequent commentator in the media and is a regular guest on both The Drum and The Project.


Twitter @nickihutley


Responses (1)

The Federal Budget May 2021

Poll 46

"On May 11, the government delivered a budget designed, in the Treasurer's words, to 'secure Australia's economic recovery and build for the future'.  What grade would you give the budget given that objective, A, B, C, D, E, F?"

Photo credit Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND




My overall rating of C is based on three separate categories: dealing with the pandemic recovery phase, longer term vision, and environment. On the pandemic recovery, there is a lot to support short term job recovery and just the size of the spending alone will help this, even if it's not all targeted in the way I'd like. For example, more for those on Newstart would have been preferable to another year of the Lamington, and more help for tourism and the arts would have been better than spending on tradies' trucks.) But, all in all, the public sector will continue to spur economic growth in 2021-22, so I give this component a B+. On the longer term vision, there's some bits and bobs to like. The Patent Box sounds sensible, and the child care subsidy extension, although it doesn't go nearly far enough, is certainly a really positive step in the right direction for female participation. The social spend for aged care, violence against women, mental health, NDIS, and so on - are all very welcome. But there's nothing in there that pulls together a coherent vision of a wealthier, more productive Australia; one with higher wages and a sustainable growth path. This was an opportunity lost, especially given the debt we're now piling up. I'm giving this a B-. Perhaps most important to me, though, is the missed opportunity to invest in a renewable recovery. This would have meant more jobs, higher wages, more growth, less emissions and attracting private sector co-investment. It also would have sent a clear signal to the market, rather than spending on gas and oil. There were a couple of environmentally positive initiatives, but way too little. I rated this an D.