10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Now that’s action. Picture: Warner Bros

Good morning.

1. Markets! We have a little bit of liftoff, thanks to a rally from crude oil and US stocks overnight. While the ASX 200 traded to the weakest price since July 2013, buyers came back and lifted the market back above 4,900 at the close. Overnight futures trade suggests further gains today, but here’s a great note from analysts at Morgan Stanley. They say even with the rubbish start to 2016, Australian stocks are still not cheap and the ASX 200 will fall to 4,800.

2. Despite its good night, oil is still so bad, prices have plunged to 12-year-lows. Guess who couldn’t care less and has spent the past six months buying up? This guy.

3. The Surface Phone. Will 2016 be the year Microsoft gets Windows Phone right? It can’t really get it any wronger, to be honest. WP accounts for just 1.7% of the market. But those who like it, love it and are no doubt holding out hoping Microsoft can match a Surface Phone’s performance with its tablet success. It’s also a rumour, but there’s a couple of big conferences coming up. For now, here’s everything we know about ‘Surface Phone’.

4. Hans Gruber died last night. Another entertainment legend passed at the age of 69, also succumbing to cancer. Alan Rickman will be missed by millions of Harry Potter fans, despite killing Dumbledore. But for the rest of us, he’ll be forever known for this:

Just. The greatest.
Here’s how ‘Die Hard director John McTiernan tricked Rickman into the greatest one-second performance of his life. Yippee ki-ay, Alan Rickman.

5. The ANZ is facing some uncomfortable accusations. The AFR reports two traders sacked by the bank just over a year ago for inappropriate behaviour are suing it for tens of millions of dollars. They claim senior staff maintained an official level of conduct while condoning “a rampant culture of sex, drugs and alcohol”. But there are also some serious claims about the bank’s conduct towards investors and clients, including one which could be a potential breach of the Corporations Act. The AFR has all the details here.

6. More Oscar-worthy moments. The 2016 Academy Awards nominees are in, and Mad Max is officially not a cult classic any more. “Fury Road” could collect as many as 11 Oscars for George Miller. But that’s still one less for Leo DiCaprio vehicle “The Revenant”. Hilariously, grieving Star Wars fans just don’t understand any of it.

7. Words are not enough. Not just a great song, but a dim light starting to shine in the back of the minds of political leaders the world over. Shining too late for the rapidly growing list of those suddenly finding themselves without a job because they are unable to deliver on their promises, or, just as crucially, unable to prove their opponents are unable to deliver on theirs. And today’s pesky modern public not only also want words, they want facts and they better be solid facts. Mark Textor has this great read on why, in this age of “evidentiary politics”, leaders need more than just a bold vision to survive.

8. Yuppies rejoice – BMW just made the M3 and M4 even more insane. Here are the details. And here’s what happens when you try to carjack someone’s righteous ride in ‘Straya:

9. Showers. They’re ace for getting clean in. But research just in shows 72% of people also get their best ideas under hot, running water — here’s why.

10. Take all 100 billion stars in our Milky Way. Mash them together into a sun and it would still shine 20 times less brightly than ASASSN-15lh. Scientists discovered the super-luminous supernova in July last year and it’s still blowing their minds to the point where they think there’s nothing else like it in the universe, and never will be again.

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