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The Viagra budget: economy needs 'excessive stimulation'

Financial commentator Peter Switzer
Financial commentator Peter Switzer

AT A time when arguably everything can be sexualised, the Federal Government's 2015 budget has been dubbed the "Viagra budget".

While Treasurer Joe Hockey tried to pass it off as "measured, fair and responsible", economic commentator Peter Switzer coined a more salacious description at the Price waterhouse Cooper's post-budget breakfast.

Mr Switzer reasoned the budget was the answer to the Australian economy's need for "excessive stimulation".

Former prime minister John Howard and PwC taxation expert Tom Seymour agreed with Mr Switzer's argument that growth was the critical issue as they dissected the budget together in front of 2100 business people in Brisbane.

Fellow speaker Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt warned, however, it was unclear how many budget "sweeteners" were dependent on previous budget measures being passed.

The budget's support for small businesses received high praise.

Mr Howard said it was a politically sensible budget compared to last year's, which had put many people offside.

But he said that was not a criticism and advised the government against an early election.

Mr Howard slammed the Opposition's negativity towards the budget, urging Labor to take heed of his example when he was in opposition in the 1980s and supported prime minister Bob Hawke's "sensible economic reform".

"Those who would be ready to criticise the Treasurer ... for not going harder in certain areas, perhaps should bear in mind that the critical need at the present time is to have a resumption of economic growth," Mr Howard said.

Topics:  federalbudget2015-16 joe hockey



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