Good morning. Let’s get busy.
1. Straight to the markets, where the weakness offshore really hit local stock futures trade hard on Friday night with the SPI 200 September contract down a whopping 59 points. A big part of that is the lead from offshore but also that the miners, BHP and Rio, were hammered in London trade, falling 3.8% and 3.5% respectively. That sets up for a weak day for Australian stocks.
2. In Asia Friday, the Shanghai stock market opened remarkably well, holding onto some gains even in the face of the weak PMI print of 48.2. But as the Shanghai afternoon wore on, the selling accelerated into the close and the composite index finished off 1.28% to 4,045 – still around 700 points off the low of the past month.
3. Friday also saw the Aussie dollar make a new post-2009 low and sentiment is weak. But Westpac reckons it’s going to take a lot of hits for it to head under 70 cents. It’s currently at 73 cents, USDJPY is holding under 124, and the Kiwi is just below 66 cents.
4. It’s a light week for data, but all eyes will be on the FOMC and any moves to hike rates in the US at 4am Thursday (AEST). In Australia, we get the release of ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Sentiment tomorrow, with the week rounded out by export/import prices, building approvals and NAB SME Business Survey and RBA credit. They’re all here in Westpac’s excellent diary of all the data and events that matter.
5. Here’s what it looks like when you test a missile off the deck of a warship and it sort of gets stuck:
It happened earlier this month aboard the excellently named US Navy destroyer USS The Sullivans. There’s more details and crazy pics here.
6. Westpac’s chief economist Bill Evans isn’t scared to make the odd unorthodox call. What makes him so well-respected is that when he does, he’s often on the money. Here’s what he has to say about RBA governor Glenn Stevens’ “warning” that the outlook for lower growth rates in Australia doesn’t necessarily translate to lower rates.
7. Perfume is more interesting than you may have thought. A study has found if women like a scent, they’ll buy it for themselves or a male friend, but not for a female friend. Many will keep their own fragrance choice a secret. And if they don’t like a certain perfume, they’ll buy it for a “friend”.
8. Is Apple’s golden goose cooked? This looks almost definitely like a case of a premature call, but Apple is iPhone… and the numbers for iPhone sales have started to miss their mark.
9. The ultimate high-tech man cave? It took New Zealand plastics engineer Jono Williams three years to build “The Skysphere”, a giant lollipop in a paddock on NZ’s north island. We’ve got a few pics of what it looks like inside, including what’s going on inside his couch/esky, where there’s no accounting for taste:
10. Shark attack. There’s been another one, and it was fatal. When Tasmanian scallop diver Damian Johnson failed to surface off Maria Island, his daughter went back down to investigate and saw him being attacked by a large great white. The local community is in shock – it’s the first fatal attack in Tassie in 17 years – but Johnson’s family reckon talk of a cull is “ridiculous” saying he “loved the water … loved nature”.
BONUS ITEM: Not to be outdone, this Russian frigate one-upped the USS The Sullivans’ snafu with its own botched missile launch late last week. It was helping celebrate Navy Day:
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