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Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra

In her last podcast for the year, Michelle Grattan speaks with Treasurer Josh Frydenberg about the mid-year budget update, his optimism about the economy, and the election.

Although Scott Morrison has the option of a March poll, Frydenberg says he is working on the assumption he’ll deliver a budget on March 29, which would put the election in May.

Frydenberg says he’ll be “spending my Christmas period doing other than eating turkey and having a quiet beer on the balcony and looking at the beach in Lorne. I will be thinking about the budget, thinking about next year’s election and hoping to frame the contest about economic management.”

He admits that with the pandemic “there’s a lot of uncertainty out there.” But he stresses that the “one message I want to give to all your listeners today is there is no complacency. We’re not out of this thing yet.”

Frydenberg says he is still “very confident about the economy going forward”, with plenty of spending power to help it along.

“We have this wave of money that’s been accumulated by households and businesses because the restrictions meant that they couldn’t spend it and they will in time.”

The Conversation

Michelle Grattan does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

ref. Politics with Michelle Grattan: Josh Frydenberg ‘thinking about the budget’ over Christmas –