Tuesday, December 6, 2011

"A Financial Illiterate"

FOR someone who probably wears Spandex, Boy On A Bike is a very astute fellow. That would be enough to stop him working at the Silly Moaning Imperilled, where being a dill has long appeared to be a condition of employment.

In an effort to remedy the consequences of this policy, Bike Boy picks through Fairfax's grim numbers and administers a lesson in accounting to reporterette Josphine Tovey.

UPDATE:  When you think about it, Tovey is probably too young and unworldly to understand amortisation, which several commenters have noted is what she means by "depreciation". Her story also fails to note that, regardless of the squirt unit's residual value (if that is the way she insists on regarding it), it will remain capable of giving ferals a bath for many decades into the future.

If Fairfax wishes to cut costs by hiring children, fair enough. But were there no adults in the editors' ranks who could look at her story and twig to its stupidity? Apparently not.

A FURTHER FAIRFAX UPDATE: A gossipy sort who asks not to be identified nor quoted directly, writes that 3AW's Neil Mitchell used his address to a media industry luncheon in Melbourne on Tuesday to express a lack of faith in his boss, CEO Greg Hywood. Mitchell, according to the Billabong's correspondent,  asserted that Hywood understands neither the company he runs nor how to stablise his newspapers' sales, which Hywood has dismissed as no longer such a big deal.

What a strange and peculiar company!

Anyone who attended the lunch and can confirm, expand or correct what Mitchell is reported to have said is invited to do so in comments.


  1. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.December 6, 2011 at 4:49 PM

    It's a warning, Professor Bunyip. The Spandex Spunk shows that Fairfax depreciate their websites over 2 to 4 years, producing an extraordinary implied depreciation rate of 25% to 50%. At that rate, the Billabong could soon be undergoing a deficiency of electrons and move into negative existence territory. In theory anyway. We trust you to work it all out.

  2. Illiterate indeed -- and to some extent so is BOAB. The water truck is certainly losing value but that is not financial depreciation. Depreciation is the amortisation of the cost of a capital item over its useful life, usually for tax purposes (so not to affect government revenue when large items are purchased). In fact a better term for 'depreciation' is 'amortisation' -- financial dunces then won't get the process confused with wearing-out and replacement.

    Tovy's item is one giant beat-up from a financial ignoramus.

  3. What all that really boils down to is that the NSW Police aren't washing nearly enough human detritus down the sewer. Imagine what work it could have been put to in Martin Place during October, if only it didn't rain...

  4. Augustus

    It has been 25 years since I picked up a dusty and underused accounting textbook; and all that I learned has been largely washed away by a sea of red plonk. I dimly remember that depreciation applied (back then) to physical assets and amortisation was applied to non-physical assets like leases etc.

    Does that still hold true, or am I showing my age?

  5. Prof

    I think you'll like this story too, which illustrates nicely the dirty little symbiotic relationship between Fairfax and the Greens.


  6. BOAB -- You're right, but for practical purposes it amounts to the same thing.

  7. Fairfax confuse me.

    They seem to be upset that the water-cannon is sitting idle.

    Perhaps NSW Plod could take it out every three months or so for a practice run.

    I am thinking of two training opportunities:-

    Firstly they could try it out on Critical Mass (those cyclist wankers who think it is their right to block roads they don’t pay for).

    Secondly, they could merely cruise any Sydney Street furnished with one of Clover Moore’s bike lanes with the jet angled slightly down and to the left