1. The US Fed this morning left rates on hold, lowered the dot plot (but still projected two hikes this year), and Janet Yellen said July could be live, maybe. It was all very cautious and data-dependent, so the Dow, S&P and Nasdaq all slid into the close. Just a little. Miners had a great night, European markets seemed to come to terms with a Brexit a bit more and financials did well, all of which helped lift the SPI 200 into the black by a couple of points. That might help the ASX 200 after its weak close yesterday, down -1.98% to 5147.10.
2. And it looks like the Aussie dollar could be in for a wild ride today. The release of Australian jobs data for May drops at 11.30am AEST – David Scutt has the preview here – and a 0.1% lift in the unemployment rate to 5.8% “would be AUD supportive”. There’s also a speech from RBA assistant governor Christopher Kent at 12.30pm AEST and the Bank of Japan’s June monetary policy decision later in the session. Any unexpected policy easing by the BoJ today will hurt the dollar, which closed the session buying .7404.
3. The US Open starts tomorrow, and seven Aussies will be vying for a slice of the $US10 million prize pool at the “insanely difficult” Oakmont Country Club. That’s a lot of cash for hitting a small ball. But it’s not as much as what the world’s best videogamers will get if they win the Dota International held at Seattle’s KeyArena on August 12 and 13. The prize pool, which is mostly crowdfunded, is already nudging $US12 million, and headed for a possible $US20 mill:
Last year’s winners, Team Evil Geniuses, took home $US6.6 million.
4. So yeah, kids these days. Not only do they get paid for being really good at video games, they’re also really… nice. Sarah Kliff at Vox spotted the disturbing trend in a report the US government releases every two years called the “Youth Risk Behaviour Surveillance System”. It’s found less Gen Zers are having sex, having it less often, and are having it more cautiously. They’re abusing less heroin and ice. And only 22.6% of them said they’d been in a punch-up. They’re even bringing less weapons to school. Gah.
5. We need to talk about Brexit. Despite what the polls say, the final decision on whether to leave the EU will come down to whether the Poms have the bottle to do it on the day. Remember Scotland not leaving the UK? New Zealanders not kicking the Union Jack off their flag? Australia opting to remain ruled by The Queen? But here’s someone making sense – BI UK’s finance editor Lianna Brinded, who never thought Brexit was a good idea. Here’s why she’s now thinking maybe it is.
6. If Lianna’s speaking for the majority, there will be implications. Widespread ones, like a big knock to the AUD/USD, according to the CBA. Credit Suisse reckons the Brexit chaos is already here. HSBC reckons gold will explode. And it’s not just about money – here are the 6 laws the Leave campaign wants to enact after Brexit.
7. Crimes that pay. If you want some advice from a guy who’s dispatched more than 300 souls, check out “Popeye” on YouTube. You’ll be among 120,000 or so who tune into hear how Pablo Escobar’s top hitman is getting on with life after being released from prison. He says he’s sorry for killing all those peeps. And 2014 internet sensation “the Hot Felon” is out:
And embarking on his modelling career.
8. Australians don’t say “bloomin'” anymore. And proper ones don’t eat whole onions for a meal. But for a limited time, Outback Steakhouse will offer a “Loaded Bloomin’ Onion” topped with french fries, two kinds of cheese, and bacon. It weighs in at more than 3000 calories. Flamin’ heck. Even our stablemates in the US reckon it could be “one of the most decadent menu items in restaurant history”. It should come with this horrific weight-loss device on the side, just approved in the US:
9. Apple is changing the way you unlock your iPhone. Download iOS 10 and you’ll be waving goodbye to the iconic “Slide to unlock” gesture.
10. Love is… two millionaires in the Queensland holiday town of Noosa heading to the High Court to fight over the extension of a balcony. Former Thiess CEO Martin Albrecht has already spent the price of buying a new apartment in legal fees just so he could combine two balconies into bigger one. The other millionaire in the complex says no. Oh, rich people.
BONUS ITEM: The Sun, back on top form with the headlines after Tom Hiddleston was spotted pashing Taylor Swift on a rock:
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