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Banking

Swan is happy, but not all Australians are so impressed

Australia’s new finance minister still has to convince his fellow citizens that he can keep the economy on an even keel.

Can Swan keep Australia flying? 

Labor government treasurer Wayne Swan took the tiller just as the ripples from the US sub-prime crisis hit the country’s shores. He has to convince his fellow citizens that he can cope with an unpropitious global situation and keep the country on an even keel. He spoke to Eric Ellis.

Australia’s new finance minister still ha'national accountants body's to convince his fellow citizens that he can keep the economy on an even keel.

THERE MUST BE something in the water at Nambour State High School.

A rural secondary school in the heart of Australia’s semi-tropical, deep north, sugar-belt state of Queensland, Nambour High is a modest institution little different to the other state-funded schools of its type across middle Australia.

And the school motto – "Traditional values, modern education" – is hardly going to be sufficient to get students bounding from morning assembly to greatness in public life. There’s no noble carpe diem seizing Nambour’s day, none of Eton’s Latinesque flourish to inspire the fraternity from its playing fields to a glorious beyond.

But Nambour High is not only the alma mater of the relatively new Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd (the school’s head boy in 1974), barely a year in office after his Labor Party seized power from John Howard’s conservative Liberal Party last November.

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