10 Things You Need To Know This Morning In Australia

A banner at Old Trafford after yet another loss by Manchester United

Good morning, and welcome to Thursday! Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Here’s a turn-up: Rupert Murdoch has appointed his son Lachlan co-chair of his two companies, News Corp and 21st Century Fox, giving clarity on succession plans for the media empire. Lachlan left the management ranks in 2005, but James was burnt with the hacking scandal in Britain, so this resolves a lot of questions about the succession plan. Rupert’s now 83.
  2. On MH370, surely, they’ve confirmed a debris field: French satellites have spotted 122 pieces of debris found in a 400 square km search area Also, the Pentagon is sending this super-deep sub to help in the search.
  3. John Howard says he wouldn’t accept a knighthood if he was nominated for one by Tony Abbott. Howard stands by his view that it’s “anachronistic”. This scotches a lot of theories on who’s first in line for Sir-dom after Peter Cosgrove.
  4. We’ve been following the highs of the Australian dollar closely this week and overnight it hit yet another 2014 high. Glenn Stevens’ remarks yesterday were clear yesterday: household consumption and the construction sector, the pillars of domestic demand, are strengthening. David Scutt at Arab Bank (whose morning note is a quality read) says that “given bullish momentum on the charts, a plethora of spec positions that remain short and the proximity to quarter-end, a period where the Aussie has outperformed compared to most of its major peers, it’s likely that the pair will remain well bid today despite the moderate ‘risk off’ tone seen elsewhere.” Short covering and no downdraughts means it’s likely to stay high without data or jawboning to move it for now.
  5. Samsung launched the Galaxy S5 for Australia last night: it will cost you $82 a month on Telstra and $51 a month on Optus, with the usual maze of catches – all the details are here. The RRP for the handset is $924.
  6. Remember Sochi? It’s a ghost town. But then so’s Olympic Park.
  7. If you’re looking for a decision on any big investment plays this week, please be aware a significant contingent of Sydney’s business community is now in Hong Kong for the Rugby Sevens so you might not hear back until Tuesday. Or maybe Wednesday.
  8. King, the company that makes the cult game Candy Crush, finished more than 15% down on after its stock market debut. Awkward.
  9. Manchester United fans are losing their cool over the team’s performance under David Moyes. It looks like the simmering frustration over the team’s terrible string of results is about to boil over – apparently fans have even been giving Alex Ferguson hassle in the stands for choosing Moyes as his successor.
  10. George Lucas traded 2.5% of ‘Star Wars’ for 2.5% of Stephen Spielberg’s ‘Close Encounters’. No points for guessing the loser.

Have a cracker day. I’m on Twitter: @colgo

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