10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

The Fixer. Picture: Getty Images

Good morning.

1. Rates! The RBA won’t change them today, and the accompanying monetary statement will almost certainly offer a neutral bias on the outlook for interest rates. And if the banks want to raise rates, they won’t wait for a lead from the RBA. But anyway, here’s your 10-second guide to the drop at 2.30pm.

2. Markets. US shares drifted lower after weaker than expected auto sales data (more on that later). And it looks like global markets are holding fire until later in the week, when the US Fed minutes will liven things up, and Chinese leader Xi Jinping visits the US President on Thursday. Iron ore is tumbling and the Aussie dollar is sleeping.

3. Remember those Very Large Ore Carriers Fortescue bought last year that Twiggy Forrest named after his daughters? We had some lovely pics of Nicola:

Picture: Getty Images

A much older version, the Stellar Daisy capsized without warning on the weekend off the coast of Uruguay. Only two of 24 crew members have been found, but why the monstrous cargo ship sank is a mystery. The most interesting theory so far is that shaking seas, may have caused its iron and nickel ore cargo to liquefy.

4. A blast on a train in St Petersburg, Russia, claimed 11 lives and injured dozens more. Russian President Vladimir Putin was in St Petersburg when the blast occurred and said something his counterparts in the US and Australia never would:

“The causes are not clear, it’s too early. We will look at all possible causes, terrorism as well as common crime.”

5. Reddit did something extraordinary for April Fools’ Day. It created “Place” and told users they could paint one single pixel tile each every five minutes. So to do anything meaningful, they had to team up. By the end of it all, one million Reddit users had painted more than sixteen million tiles. To give you an idea of how that looked, here’s the battle to get the US flag up:

Check out the finished product, and what the Aussies did

6. What is Kim Jong-un capable of? Let’s ask his former deputy ambassador to Britain, Thae Yong Ho:

“(If) there is any kind of sign of a tank or an imminent threat from America, then he would use his nuclear weapons with ICBM.”

Cool, OK. So how should the US President handle that? US State Department employee Joel Wit reckons Trump’s best bet is to convince China that he – Trump – is a madman.

This is going well.

7. Ford’s stock price dropped 2.19% last night, just as Tesla reported record deliveries. That saw Tesla overtake Ford in market cap. So for the first time, Tesla was bigger than Ford. Chalk that up to Elon Musk, who has a history of making great strategic moves, and on the weekend, pulled another one off which all but guarantees Tesla will be kind of a big deal in China.

8. Also on stock prices. Here’s what happens when Apple anounces it will no longer be using your tech:


Imagination supplied graphics chips to Apple, and getting dumped cost it $US625 million in an instant.

9. The whole golf world’s talking about how Lexi Thompson blew a three-stroke lead with six holes to go in the first LPGA major of the year with this move:

In case you missed it, she put her ball back in the wrong place. A viewer emailed organisers, and they penalised Thompson two strokes. But amongst all the “how ridiculous” cries, not much noise was made of the fact Thompson then lost another two strokes for submitting an incorrect scorecard. In Golf World, that’s a paddlin’ – now. Two years ago, it was an automatic disqualification.

10. Tired of getting a News Feed based on things your friends like, polluted with pictures of their little brats? You might want to keep an eye out for the Facebook rocket ship then:


It’s a new feature coming that gives you an alternative News Feed. (And more space for Facebook to fit in extra ads.)

BONUS ITEM: This guy’s daughter loves March Madness so much, he recreated Villanova’s thrilling final win so she could watch it over and over again: