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Monday, 22 February 2016
Page: 1603


Mr BOWEN (McMahon) (14:30): My question is to the Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister rule out making any retrospective changes to negative gearing—yes or no?

Mr Ewen Jones interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Herbert will cease interjecting.

Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (14:30): I am glad the honourable member has asked me about negative gearing, and I can repeat again for his information that the government will set out its tax policies in the lead-up to the election—

Opposition members interjecting

Mr TURNBULL: In the lead-up to the budget and in the budget, in the normal way. And we will do so in a considered way, taking into account all the relevant factors, which the honourable member's side plainly has not.

They have on the Labor benches the member for Fraser, a distinguished former professor of economics, and he was asked today on Sky News about negative gearing by Kieran Gilbert. Kieran Gilbert said, 'Have you done the modelling to show that house prices won't be brought down?'—a fair question. The professor of economics says, 'Kieran, I'm not sure precisely by what you mean by, "Have you done the modelling?"' Kieran Gilbert, anxious to reassure the rather confused professor, said, 'Have you done economic modelling to suggest that existing house prices won't fall as a result of your policy?'—a straight, simple question. 'So if your question is,' says the professor, 'have we looked carefully at what all the studies suggest about the impacts on supply and demand, yes, absolutely.' 'So,' says Kieran Gilbert, 'no, you haven't done the modelling specifically on house prices,' to which the professor replies, 'Kieran, I think we're having a debate about what constitutes economic modelling.' I do not think we are having a debate about it at all. It is perfectly clear: you take more than one-third of the buyers out of the residential market, and prices will come down. How can that be otherwise? In the fantasy land of the Labor Party, you cut the buyers pool by one-third and prices remain unaltered. Perhaps they are hankering for a centrally planned economy where house prices are set by the government and cannot be deviated from.

But the fact is their changes to negative gearing have been very, very poorly thought through. They will cause house prices to fall. Every Australian who thinks about it for a moment knows that. They know yet again the Labor Party has shown it cannot manage the economy, it does not understand markets, it is a threat to residential housing values and it is a threat to the economy.

Ms Butler interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Griffith will cease interjecting.