Let’s get started:
1. In China yesterday, both the Hang Seng and the Shanghai composite were lower down 0.66% and 0.22% respectively. Chinese stocks completely ignored the solid Chinese MNI Business survey which bounced to 55.2 from 51.7 last. In Tokyo, the Nikkei dipped 0.32% to 17,289 with the crash in the yen unable to help stock traders at all.
2. The Aussie dollar is still falling. Iron ore, the RBA, a slowing growth profile in Australia, a hole in Treasurer hockey’s budget and Chinese bad loans have all combined this week to knock the Aussie back to an overnight low of 0.8598. The RBA is aiming for mid-80s, but our own Greg McKenna has 80 cents in his sights – as his “lifestyle option”.
3. Data fans – and Asian traders – will today be on tenterhooks waiting for the HSBC flash Chinese PMI and the JMMA version of the PMI data for Japan. In Australia, the RBA releases its FX transaction report which we might sneak a peek at to see if they have done any quiet selling to help the Aussie on its way.
4. The job market is improving. DEEWR jobs vacancies data released yesterday showed an improvement of 12% over the year to October. That’s a solid rise and the ANZ economics team reckons that even though the trend is softening, the data highlights the improving labour market in Australia. So a couple of their economists put together a great set of charts that prove it. Here’s the six we like best.
5. It’s summer storm season in Queensland. And the first big one smashed Brisbane yesterday afternoon. The pics are amazing, but our favourite is this spontaneous waterfall in Post Office Square in the CBD:
(Note to Queenslanders: If you had daylight savings, this wouldn’t have happened. At 4pm.)
6. NAB only made $5.18 billion in the 12 months to September. That’s bad new for those working in its life insurance division, because they’ve been tagerted for a sell-off, according to a report in the AFR. NBA’s hired Deloitte to help sell the business for up to $1.4 billion and possibly float it troubled UK business, which lost $1.5 billion in the last 12 months.
7. Your Uber wrap for today. Ashton Kutcher, who’s also an Uber investor, leapt to his company’s defence last night in the wake of it “let’s dig dirt on journalists who criticise us” snafu. Kutcher’s cool with that, launching a tweet storm last night saying there’s no reason why journalists shouldn’t be held to the same public scrutiny as the public figures they try to tear down. The journalist at the centre of the storm says investors and management are too scared to boot Uber CEO Travis Kalanick becuase of the huge success of the company. Respected tech journalist Robert Scoble agrees.
9. Thor is the world’s sexiest man. Scandanavians have known he was a god since before the Viking age, but little did they know he was destined to one day star in Home & Away. Okay, so we’re talking about Chris Hemsworth here, and his biceps, because he and they were voted People’s Sexiest Man Alive for 2014. Hemsworth reckons it’s “pretty funny”, especially considering he peaked a couple of years ago and is now “in decline”. He’s married to a Spanish model and has three kids, in case you were wondering.
10. NRL players keep getting richer. Manly gun Daly Cherry-Evans has for several years been destined for a huge paycheck. It looks like Cronulla have to drop, reportedly offering seven-figures for the league’s best halfback. He’d join Ben Barba at the Sharks, which would be lethal, and join Cameron Smith and Johnathan Thurston as NRL million-dollar men. But the big money is still not stopping them defecting to union, aka Sam Burgess and serial code-jumper Sonny Bill Williams.
BONUS ITEM: Yes, you could just tap the can. But this is a whole lot more enjoyable:
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