10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Today’s 10 things you need to know are brought to you by Tower One, International Towers Sydney. As the availability of modern, sustainable office space in the Sydney CBD continues to fall, discover why astute and visionary business leaders are looking to Barangaroo to future-proof their enterprises.

Back on your bike. Picture: Getty Images

Good morning.

1. Please explain… how toilets work for Pauline Hanson. She’s almost back in her old job, but there’s already big issues to deal with, like why the new ATO building in Melbourne has those toilets which are in the floor. Easy – it’s because 20% of the ATO’s employees are from countries which have used “squat toilets” forever. Here’s what Hanson thinks of all that:

“What the hell is going on? Because I know what’s more confusing and it’s definitely not using the squat toilet, it’s doing our tax.”

We’ve got her full Facebook plea here.

2. In Rio, it was horrible. Both our men’s and women’s hockey teams were bundled out. Our women’s water polo team lost its quarter-final to Hungary in the final two minutes. And Anna Meares endured a nightmare farewell to cycling, bowing out before the quarter-finals. The good news? We’re guaranteed a surprise medal in the women’s K2 500m final after Sunshine Coast kayakers Alyssa Bull and Alyce Burnett finished third in the semi-finals. And whether he wins a medal or not, high-jumper Brandon Starc is already a hero – to legions of “Game of Thrones” fans. And he qualified for the final comfortably. You can catch him tomorrow at 9.30am.

And one clear Aussie winner was Cameron Spencer, who took this incredible shot for Getty:

Picture: Getty Images

Which, obviously, everyone on the internets is having a ball with.

3. They might be losing lots, but at least our athletes aren’t Islam El Shehaby. The Egyptian judoka has been sent home from Rio after refusing to bow to or shake his Israeli competitor’s hand after their match. Tool.

4. In markets, the big three indices in the US hit new record highs, despite weak Empire State Manufacturing data. Greg McKenna reckons traders might be betting that the Fed won’t be able to raise rates and other central banks will need to keep the pumps primed. So after a 9 point rally on the ASX 200 yesterday the September SPI 200 futures are pointing to an 8 point rally today. Gold was a little higher, oil roared and the Aussie dollar found support ahead of today’s RBA minutes release at 11.30am.

5. Young people forced into years of renting? Check. Already-wealthy people doing well because house prices have risen? Check. Uneven economic growth? Check. Job creation absolutely vital? Check. It’s not Australia – it’s Britain, where the central bank’s chief economist has been blunt about the need for job creation across the economy. Greg McKenna explains that this is exactly what Australia needs right now, making a good argument for the major banks to pass on the RBA’s 25 basis point rate cut in full to deliver as much stimulus as possible.

6. IPOs are doing well. At least, they are in Australia, where the average monthly return from the nine companies listing on the ASX in July was 15.7%, about 9.4 percentage points better than ASX 200. The big winner was Michael Hill jeweller and the only loser was Kogan.com. It’s all here in the latest OnMarket IPO Report.

7. Who’s a lucky kid, then? If you’re born in the US, you are, according to Warren Buffett. His argument is that despite the doom and gloom surrounding an economy growing at only 2%, per capita GDP will grow over 34% in a generation due to the power of compounding. “The babies being born in America today are the luckiest crop in history,” he told Playboy. That is, he added, unless this happens.

8. BMW says we’ll be driven up the highway just by pushing a button in 2021. That’s the date set by Bimmer senior manager Maximilian Doemling for the rollout which will start in China. Except, don’t we already have driverless cars? Here’s one in action last week that you probably wouldn’t have enjoyed nodding off in:


And here’s Audi thinking it might be a great idea to let drivers know how much longer they’ve got to text before the light goes green.

9. Things you should eat: olive oils, fish, artichokes. Because science says if you want to live a longer, healthier, more nutritious life, Mediterranean eating is the way to go. Assume cigarettes, red wine and evening sessions of dominoes in your singlet are part of that mix as well. Things you shouldn’t eat – paracetamol if you’re pregnant, because you might then give birth to hyperactive kids.

10. But then again, what does science know? It’s just realised all that climate data it got in 1995 which led to claims sea levels were going bonkers was, uh, unreliable. That’s because they forgot that a volcano in the Philippines erupted in 1991 and cooled the planet by 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit for two years and dropped sea levels by 6mm. Gah. Back to the drawing board.

BONUS ITEM: Hottest Toys for Christmas 2016 #1:

Have a great day.

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