No clear-cut successor. So suppose Labor does take the plunge and sack another Prime Minister: who would the party turn to? This morning’s Nielsen poll puts a strong case for Kevin Rudd’s return but the betting markets on the event don’t have him favourite. Some bookmakers have Simon Crean as the most likely choice while others opt for Stephen Smith or Bill Shorten.

One thing on which there is agreement is that there is a greater chance that Julia Gillard will not be the Labor Prime Minister at the time of the next election than that she will be. Distilled own into the Crikey Indicator the probabilities are:

As to who will emerge from the next election as the government:

Meanwhile, over the Tasman, the incumbent Nationals are strongly favoured to be returned.

Borrowing at 56.976%. The slow motion economic problems of Greece continue. Interest rates on two year government bonds closed last week at just under 57%!

The European Union looks incapable of preventing the collapse of the Greece’s sovereign debt. Get ready for the crisis to spread,

Some good news for Australia. At least there is no sign yet that the financial contagion has reached China.

The BBC reports the country’s imports hit a record monthly high in August, indicating a strong domestic demand despite concerns of a global economic slowdown.

Imports surged by 30.2% from a year earlier to $155.6bn (£98bn), government data released over the weekend showed.

Exports rose by 24.5% resulting in a trade surplus of $17.8bn, down from $31.5bn in the previous month.

Peter Fray

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