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Eurozone economies were the most adversely affected by the Global Financial Crisis, with forecast macroeconomic outcomes still highly uncertain. This article argues first that the Eurozone policy framework can be viewed as neo-liberalism overlaid with policy constraints associated with a mis-specified Optimum Currency Area. We are critical of this framework since it is incompatible with the policy sovereignty that is experienced, if not utilised, by sovereign economies such as the USA, UK and Australia. Second, recent and proposed policy reforms which generally lie within the constraints of the Eurozone framework are examined. We conclude that these policies are piecemeal and fail to restore policy sovereignty, which ultimately requires that member countries exit the Eurozone. Key issues associated with such an exit are briefly discussed.
Teaching Secondary History provides a comprehensive introduction to the theory and practice of teaching History to years 7–12 in Australian schools. Engaging directly with the Australian Curriculum, this text introduces pre-service teachers to the discipline of History. It builds on students' historical knowledge, thinking and skills and offers practical guidance on how to construct well-rounded History lessons for students. From inquiry strategies and teacher- and student-centred practice, to embedding the cross-curriculum priorities in planning and assessment, this text supports the learning and development of pre-service History teachers by connecting the 'big ideas' of teaching with the nuance of History content. Each chapter features short-answer and Pause and think questions to enhance understanding of key concepts, Bringing it together review questions to consolidate learning, classroom scenarios, examples of classroom work and a range of information boxes to connect students to additional material.
Studying phenotypic and genetic characteristics of age at onset (AAO) and polarity at onset (PAO) in bipolar disorder can provide new insights into disease pathology and facilitate the development of screening tools.
To examine the genetic architecture of AAO and PAO and their association with bipolar disorder disease characteristics.
Genome-wide association studies (GWASs) and polygenic score (PGS) analyses of AAO (n = 12 977) and PAO (n = 6773) were conducted in patients with bipolar disorder from 34 cohorts and a replication sample (n = 2237). The association of onset with disease characteristics was investigated in two of these cohorts.
Earlier AAO was associated with a higher probability of psychotic symptoms, suicidality, lower educational attainment, not living together and fewer episodes. Depressive onset correlated with suicidality and manic onset correlated with delusions and manic episodes. Systematic differences in AAO between cohorts and continents of origin were observed. This was also reflected in single-nucleotide variant-based heritability estimates, with higher heritabilities for stricter onset definitions. Increased PGS for autism spectrum disorder (β = −0.34 years, s.e. = 0.08), major depression (β = −0.34 years, s.e. = 0.08), schizophrenia (β = −0.39 years, s.e. = 0.08), and educational attainment (β = −0.31 years, s.e. = 0.08) were associated with an earlier AAO. The AAO GWAS identified one significant locus, but this finding did not replicate. Neither GWAS nor PGS analyses yielded significant associations with PAO.
AAO and PAO are associated with indicators of bipolar disorder severity. Individuals with an earlier onset show an increased polygenic liability for a broad spectrum of psychiatric traits. Systematic differences in AAO across cohorts, continents and phenotype definitions introduce significant heterogeneity, affecting analyses.
Under the European Union’s Solvency II regulations, insurance firms are required to use a one-year VaR (Value at Risk) approach. This involves a one-year projection of the balance sheet and requires sufficient capital to be solvent in 99.5% of outcomes. The Solvency II Internal Model risk calibrations require annual changes in market indices/term structure for the estimation of risk distribution for each of the Internal Model risk drivers. This presents a significant challenge for calibrators in terms of:
Robustness of the calibration that is relevant to the current market regimes and at the same time able to represent the historically observed worst crisis;
Stability of the calibration model year on year with arrival of new information.
The above points need careful consideration to avoid credibility issues with the Solvency Capital Requirement (SCR) calculation, in that the results are subject to high levels of uncertainty.
For market risks, common industry practice to compensate for the limited number of historic annual data points is to use overlapping annual changes. Overlapping changes are dependent on each other, and this dependence can cause issues in estimation, statistical testing, and communication of uncertainty levels around risk calibrations.
This paper discusses the issues with the use of overlapping data when producing risk calibrations for an Internal Model. A comparison of the overlapping data approach with the alternative non-overlapping data approach is presented. A comparison is made of the bias and mean squared error of the first four cumulants under four different statistical models. For some statistical models it is found that overlapping data can be used with bias corrections to obtain similarly unbiased results as non-overlapping data, but with significantly lower mean squared errors. For more complex statistical models (e.g. GARCH) it is found that published bias corrections for non-overlapping and overlapping datasets do not result in unbiased cumulant estimates and/or lead to increased variance of the process.
In order to test the goodness of fit of probability distributions to the datasets, it is common to use statistical tests. Most of these tests do not function when using overlapping data, as overlapping data breach the independence assumption underlying most statistical tests. We present and test an adjustment to one of the statistical tests (the Kolmogorov Smirnov goodness-of-fit test) to allow for overlapping data.
Finally, we explore the methods of converting “high”-frequency (e.g. monthly data) to “low”-frequency data (e.g. annual data). This is an alternative methodology to using overlapping data, and the approach of fitting a statistical model to monthly data and then using the monthly model aggregated over 12 time steps to model annual returns is explored. There are a number of methods available for this approach. We explore two of the widely used approaches for aggregating the time series.
The discovery of the first electromagnetic counterpart to a gravitational wave signal has generated follow-up observations by over 50 facilities world-wide, ushering in the new era of multi-messenger astronomy. In this paper, we present follow-up observations of the gravitational wave event GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart SSS17a/DLT17ck (IAU label AT2017gfo) by 14 Australian telescopes and partner observatories as part of Australian-based and Australian-led research programs. We report early- to late-time multi-wavelength observations, including optical imaging and spectroscopy, mid-infrared imaging, radio imaging, and searches for fast radio bursts. Our optical spectra reveal that the transient source emission cooled from approximately 6 400 K to 2 100 K over a 7-d period and produced no significant optical emission lines. The spectral profiles, cooling rate, and photometric light curves are consistent with the expected outburst and subsequent processes of a binary neutron star merger. Star formation in the host galaxy probably ceased at least a Gyr ago, although there is evidence for a galaxy merger. Binary pulsars with short (100 Myr) decay times are therefore unlikely progenitors, but pulsars like PSR B1534+12 with its 2.7 Gyr coalescence time could produce such a merger. The displacement (~2.2 kpc) of the binary star system from the centre of the main galaxy is not unusual for stars in the host galaxy or stars originating in the merging galaxy, and therefore any constraints on the kick velocity imparted to the progenitor are poor.
Research was conducted to determine the utility of a single, temperature-independent Weibull function for describing cumulative seed germination under several temperature regimes with 14 sets of weed and crop seed germination data. A modified cumulative Weibull function was derived to distribute germination times for individuals within the population and distributed the occurrence of germination given ample sample size and appropriate sample interval. The descriptive and predictive attributes of the stochastic model component are well suited for incorporation into seed germination models and are likely applicable to models to predict distribution of times for other developmental processes of plants.