Bob Hawke

Information about Bob Hawke

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According to political commentator Paul Kelly, "the most influential economic decisions of the 1980s were the floating of the Australian dollar and the deregulation of the financial system". Although the Fraser Government had played a part in the process of financial deregulation by commissioning the 1981 Campbell Report, opposition from Fraser himself had stalled the deregulation process. When the Hawke Government implemented a comprehensive program of financial deregulation and reform, it "transformed economics and politics in Australia". The Australian economy became significantly more integrated with the global economy as a result, which completely transformed its relationship with Asia, Europe and the United States. Both Hawke and Keating would claim the credit for being the driving force behind the success of the Australian Dollar float. That year the economy was seen to be in crisis with a 40% devaluation of the Australian dollar, a marked increase in the current account deficit and the loss of the Federal Government's triple A rating.