10 Things You Need To Know This Morning In Australia

Jarryd Hayne and Johnathan Thurston – joint winners. Picture: Getty Images

Good morning! Here’s what’s happened so far.

1. More terror raids. This time it’s Melbourne’s turn as the AFP swooped on five suburbs this morning, making at least one arrest at the time this went out. The AFP said the operation was not related to last week’s Endeavour Hills incident, nor was it in response to any threat to public safety. There’s be plenty more on this as the day unfolds.

2. To the markets, where locally, we look terrible. Banks under pressure, iron ore still falling and sentiment clearly at a low ebb. Yesterday saw the physical market lose 0.9% to 5,264 and overnight there was more weakness on the SPI 200 with the December contract down another 12 points to 5,250. On the data front we get the ANZ – Roy Morgan consumer confidence survey this morning and then private sector credit. More importantly though, HSBC Chinese PMI is out.

3. In Asia yesterday it was an interesting day’s trade. The Hang Seng dipped 1.90% and the concerns about the protests knocked (or were at least the excuse for selling) markets in Australia, Europe and the US but both the Nikkei and Shanghai exchanges were higher. The Nikkei rallied as USDJPY surged once again and it closed up 0.5% to 16,311. In Shanghai, the exchange was up 0.44% to 2,358.

4. The Aussie dollar has overshot. So says NAB in a bit of a Whoa Nelly, noting that while US dollar strength could persist they are “just cautious about simply extrapolating the trend of the past few weeks to a much lower AUD in the near term”. They’re happy enough to restate their forecasts for AUDUSD falling to 82 cents by late 2015 and 80 by early 2016, but not so fast, please. “Latest positioning data c/o the IMM suggests that the previous overhang of long AUD positioning has now largely been eliminated,” the currency strategy team wrote.

5. Medibank Private float looks like a big one. The three managers working on the December listing – Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and Macquarie Capital – sent out reports yesterday in preparation for investor meetings in the next fortnight. They say the float could raise up to $5.7 billion or as little as $4.1 billion. The high end is $1 billion more than expectations and Medibank could trade on a multiple of 18.4 to 21.5-times.

6. The gender pay gap problem. Everyone knows it’s there, but not enough Australian employers are doing anything about it. Almost three-quarters, in fact, according to new data released from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency. It says 73.7% of organisations have never done a gender pay gap analysis. Organisations in the finance and insurance services sector were the most likely to have done a gender pay gap analysis (51.16%), while education and training (10.14%) were the worst offenders. And of those who did and identified a problem, less than a third actually did anything about it.

7. Occupy Central got bigger. Hong Kong withdrew its tear-gas firing police force yesterday hoping it would calm things down in the city’s Admiralty district. It didn’t and the pictures from overnight as citizens protest for their right to democratic elections are amazing. The movement has its own Tank Man – Umbrella Man.

And if you wanted to know what it’s like to get hit with tear gas, this video is pretty, well, in your face.

8. People most likely to be climate change deniers. This one is proving popular this morning. It’s based on US polling, but we figure skepticism is a universal movement. BI US writer Randy Olsen wanted to know where the reported 7% rise in climate change denial this year is coming from. 97% of scientists agree it’s occurring, but only 70% of citizens are swayed. Is it tied to household income? IQ? Political allegiances? Olsen boils it all down to find the ultimate denier, then offers a way to bring them to the fold.

9. The incredible life of Bill Gates. Forbes’ released its list of the wealthiest people in America today, and no surprises for guessing who’s on top. He left Microsoft behind years ago, yet still made $6bn in the past six months, with the help of this mystery man. However, Mark Zuckerberg is growing his wealth faster than all of them, adding $15bn in the past year.

10. The Dally M was shared for the first time. Cowboys captain Johnathan Thurston is verging on NRL Immortal status after bagging his third NRL Player of the Year award, joining Andrew Johns as the only other three-time Dally M winner. Eels skipper Jarryd Hayne then stepped up to share his second Dally M with Thurston. So that was two captains winning the Dally M, yet Manly captain Jamie Lyon won Captain of the Year. The very extensive list of the rest of the awards can be found here.

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