10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Way to go. Picture: Fox Sports

Good morning.

1. First, to markets and the US is about to bunk off on a Labour Day public holiday. But things were pretty slow anyway, thanks to even more uncertainty as August non-farm payrolls did what they always do in August – underperform. So still with no clear idea of the state of the market or which way the Fed will turn on September 21, stocks rallied and helped SPI 200 traders recoup most of Friday’s 42-point loss on the ASX 200 with September futures up 35 points. The Aussie dollar is a little higher at 0.7569 this morning and iron ore rebounded modestly.

2. Retail sales hit 0% national growth last week, dragged down by NSW and Vic shoppers. That might be because all their money is going into sky-high mortgages. A Domain survey released on the weekend showed that “half of NSW mortgage holders are worried about not being able to afford their home loan repayments” and one in five were worried they’d never pay off their home.

3. Note of the Week belongs to Viktor Shvets and Chetan Seth from the Macquarie global equities team. They’ve got an idea for what to do with the vast amount of unproductive capital roaming the world right now:

“…this world should commit itself to achieving the goal of colonizing Mars”

Here’s why they’re totally serious and why it’s not as silly as it sounds.

4. To data this week, and it’s a biggie. In Australia, we get the RBA’s call on rates tomorrow and second quarter GDP Wednesday, but to kick things off we’re expecting a reasonable bounce in jobs ads later today. It’s quiet in China, but the big ones overseas are tonight’s Services PMI in London, where we’ll look for signs of Brexit impact, NZ’s Global Dairy Trade auction and house prices Tuesday and the US Beige Book on Wednesday night. Greg McKenna has more, courtesy the NAB, in his diary here.

5. China talks quite openly about the existence of its DF-21D, a precision guided missile it says is capable of sinking a US aircraft carrier with a single shot from 810 nautical miles away. That should be a concern to the US, because the longest range missiles on its carriers only travel 550 nautical miles. But here’s why US Navy Admiral John Richardson says Russia and China “can’t stop US aircraft carriers”, with some self-redaction, for security reasons.

6. You can watch Daniel Ricciardo make the overtake of the year at last night’s Italian Grand Prix here, but we like his celebration of it better:

We also like the fact Robbie Farah chose the Leichhardt Oval scoreboard as a great place to have a beer and conduct his farewell to the Tigers interview.

7. The American Museum of Natural History has a skull of a dire wolf hidden from public view, and two 60-year-old dinosaurs which were meant to have died 65 million years ago. And here are 11 other awesome secrets tucked away in its vaults.

8. Would you pay $50,000 to save your cat? Someone did at the Animal Medical Center (AMC) on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. We know, because BI’s Rafi Letzer was there to see its owners pick it up. He spent 13 hours in the ER room watching cats and dogs routinely get state-of-the-art radiation treatment for brain cancer, total hip replacements and even alternative treatments like acupuncture. As well as grieving owners without lines of credit trying to find ways to pay for it all.

9. The darkest material in the world is called Vantablack and is made from tightly packed carbon nanotubes which absorb around 99.8% of the light visible to our eyes. Look:

This is its story.

10. It’s not summer but it’s not winter either, so that means time to start worrying again about drinking your beer before it gets warm. Or not, according to Myth #1 we debunked about warm beer, and 6 other bits of beer nonsense its time to clear the air over once and for all.

BONUS ITEM: A drone has captured the first images of a rare baby white whale off Western Australia:

Have a great day.

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