Good morning! Let’s start Friday.
1. Australia’s economy is in pretty good shape. That’s the top line from yesterday’s stonking jobs data, which crushed expectations with 37,700 jobs added for March when the market was expecting just 15,000. The unemployment rate ticked down to 6.1%, and there were upward revisions to the data for February. The likelihood of another rate cut in May – although still expected by many economists – has receded a little. Business is feeling a bit more upbeat, we learned in the NAB business survey. Add in to this that the iron ore price has at least found a pause to its relentless slide and while it’s too early to start talking about recovery, it’s enough for any bear to take a good hard look at themselves.
2. A tentative Aussie dollar rally overnight was stopped dead by comments from Fed Vice Chair Stanley Fischer who said on CNBC that Q1 weakness in the US economy seemed to becoming a pattern, and that markets were looking ahead and should be expecting the Fed to raise rates. Here’s what happened:
Greg McKenna has more.
3. On the markets, Wall Street was down marginally overnight even though earnings from Goldman Sachs and Netflix beat earnings expectations. SPI futures are pointing to a lower open for the ASX. There’s little data of note today.
4. Netflix shares are going bonkers, and Australia is helping. Shares in the streaming TV service were up 20% on its upbeat earnings report overnight. Part of the reason in international expansion, with Netflix now available in more than 50 countries worldwide, including Australia and New Zealand. Netflix expects to add another 1.9 million new international users in the second quarter, a 70% increase from last year. More here.
Netflix also revealed that the average US user streams for two hours a day.
5. China’s economy may be worse than Beijing admits – demand, according to Deutsche Bank, is slowing for the first time on record.
6. Moody’s downgraded Fortescue’s credit rating, right as it’s seeking to restructure its debt. Rio Tinto, meanwhile, has signalled it has no intention of pulling back on its cost-reduction drive that has enabled it to maintain healthy profitability in the face of the sliding iron ore price.
7. Australians are going bananas for avocados. We eat more of the things than any other English-speaking country in the world.
8. Wikileaks just published some 30,000 emails from the Sony hack.
9. A new global trend has women reducing their wardrobes to just 33 items. The idea behind Project 333 to have 33 items for three months, with the aim being to get clear on your personal style. It was started by Courtney Carver in 2010 when she was on a de-cluttering drive. “(M)y closet seemed to be a hotspot. It really started as a personal challenge — with all the clutter in the closet, I had no idea even what my style was,” she tells BI. “Capsule wardrobes” are now a global phenomenon, with bloggers sharing how their work.
10. A new trailer for the next Star Wars movie, “The Force Awakens”, is out. It’s excellent:
Have a great weekend. I’m on Twitter.
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