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1. Trade war. Chinese state media may have hailed the trade war ceasefire with the US as a win for Xi Jinping but the two sides remain far apart on a final deal, and there are substantial differences between the Trump administration’s and Beijing’s outlooks. According to analysts, it is unlikely that a broader deal will be reached in 90 days, and the possibility for an escalation of the trade war remains.
2. US stocks rallied more than 400 points after Trump and Xi reached the trade war ceasefire. Meanwhile, ASX futures are pointing lower after the local index posted its biggest one-day gain in two years yesterday.
3. The Australian dollar was trading higher late on Monday, continuing to benefit from a lift in risk aversion following the temporary trade truce between the US and China. However, it is off the highs struck earlier in the session, suggesting that traders aren’t convinced trade tensions have been resolved but postponed. At 8.10am AEDT, the Aussie was at 0.7353.
4. It’s RBA day: Interest rates are set to stay on hold at 1.5% at today’s meeting, but markets will be watching for any changes in the RBA’s commentary — particularly around housing, domestic consumption and the inflation outlook. David Scutt’s full guide is here.
5. Demonstrators continue to clash with police in Paris, protest against French President Emmanuel Macron and rising fuel prices. Saturday marked the third weekend of demonstrations and saw Paris’ Arc de Triomphe stormed and vandalised. Here’s what you need to know about the riots and the “Yellow Vests”.
6. Amazon briefly surpassed Apple as the world’s most-valuable publicly traded company overnight. It passed Apple on Monday with a market value of about $US865 billion. It comes just days after Microsoft dethroned the long-time leader Apple.
7. “It’s Time for Better Capitalism.” This was the theme laid out by Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget as he kicked off IGNITION 2018 on Monday in the US. He discussed the idea that businesses need to take into account more than just their shareholders, who are the economic elite. He also said to better benefit the economy, we need to create “better capitalism”, which means creating value for shareholders, yes, but also the employees who work at the company, its customers, and society as a whole. Read the top takeaways from Blodget’s keynote presentation.
8. Bill Gates might be busy eradicating malaria and redesigning the world’s toilets, but the Microsoft founder-turned-billionaire-philanthropist reads at least one book a week, and we have his 5 favourite books from the year. Here they are.
9. The number of billionaires in Australia is about to double, according to analysis by consultancy New World Wealth. As a group, Australians hold $US6.1 trillion in net assets. Around $US1.7 trillion of that, or 28%, of this is held by high net worth individuals. That total wealth rose strongly over the 10 years to $US6.1 trillion in 2017 from $US3.4 trillion in 2007. And it’s only set to continue with total wealth predicted to reach $US10.4 trillion over the next 10 years.
10. Millennials get blamed for a lot. And apparently now they are killing canned tuna because, wait for it, opening a can is too much work for them. See what food industry experts have to say on the topic here.
BONUS ITEM: NASA has finally reached an asteroid that may contain raw materials for the origin of life. Watch the live stream from the space agency here:
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