1. The strangest false alarm. There were “concrete” reports an ambulance packed with explosives was found near a stadium in Germany about to fill with up to 49,000 soccer fans. Police in Hannover called the cancellation of a friendly between Germany and The Netherlands just two hours before kick off after reportedly stopping and searching the ambulance. German chancellor Angela Merkel was expected to attend the match. But it turned out to be a suitcase at a train station, not packed with any explosives.
2. Charlie Hebdo, the French satirical magazine targeted by terrorists who shot their editor and 12 of their staff in January, have reacted to the gruesome attacks that shook Paris last Friday. Here’s their wonderful response:
— Mathieu Madénian (@mathieumadenian) November 17, 2015
The translation: “They have arms. F..k them. We have the champagne!”
3. And here’s a fantastic show of solidarity from English and French soccer fans, who came together in a powerful moment before an England-France friendly overnight:
4. To markets. The terror caused a bit of dip in US markets, but they all rallied back out of the red by the close. That might have a bit of a run-on effect and drag down the ASX today, which is unfortunate, because yesterday was very solid – up by 114 points. Futures are only down 28 points at the moment, with the Dec SPI200 contract at 5099, but a proper rout in iron ore and falls for crude oil, copper and gold will hurt. As will signs BHP will open down more than 3%.
5. But the dollar is kicking A – sticking above 71 cents, defying the woeful commodities and falls from the euro, kiwi and yen. There’s even the chance of a trend break coming if it can get to 0.7160. On the data front today we have a speech from RBA assistant governor Guy Debelle at 9.15am. Later in the morning we get the Westpac leading index of economic growth and the wage price index for Q3.
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6. Today’s least surprising news – ISIS Pharmaceuticals is thinking about changing its name. That’s a different tone to what CEO Stanley Crooke told CNBC’s Jim Cramer last year:
“…it drives me crazy … our investors should be sophisticated. And we’ve been ISIS for 25 years, and I don’t feel like I want to capitulate to these terrorists by changing my name. They can change their name.”
Walk away, Stanley. No one will blame you.
7. What’s the real reason everyone in cities hates bicyclists? No, not that one. Not that one either. Or that one. This is the real reason everyone in cities hates bicyclists.
8. The Iceman returneth! Tom Cruise confirmed a while ago he’ll be playing Maverick in Top Gun 2. Meh. But the sequel just levelled up in a big way – Val Kilmer’s almost confirmed he’ll be back too, with a Facebook post amended to say he “got a wonderful call” from his agent, but “being offered a role is very different from doing a role”. Now the entire internet is hoping he’ll make good on his ultimate bro promise, “You can be my wingman anytime.” Also, he’s amazing at replying to his Facebook fans. It looks like he – or his PA – sat up all night chatting:
9. There’s some obvious signs you’re being underpaid, like the same job listing on your company websites offering higher pay. But there are subtle signs too, like you’re “just happy to have a job”, or you take a longer lunch break. Here’s 13 signs that could make you stop and say, “Wait, what?”
10. US President Barack Obama just wrapped a great interview with Bill Simmons, the former ESPN columnist who is now at HBO. Which got printed in GQ. Amongst the usual political stuff, Obama was asked what he’ll miss most when he’s out of the White House next year, and he said “the helicopter”. “They clear out airspace so you don’t have to wait,” he said. But the best bit was his asnwer to which “Game of Thrones” character he identifies most with.
BONUS ITEM: This insane machine which treats trees like toothpicks. Undignified, but you could watch it all day.
It grasps a tree by its trunk, leaving only a stump.
Turns the trunk horizontally, then cuts away the branches in a single motion.
Have a great day.
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