10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

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ESA/Hubble; NASA; ESO; M. KornmesserAn artist’s depiction of Oumuamua.

Good morning.

1. US stocks plummeted Tuesday after optimism for easing trade tensions between Washington and Beijing faded as US President Donald Trump threatened to become “a Tariff Man” if talks fail. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 3.1%, or 800 points, while the Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 were both down 2.6%.

2. That saw the Australian dollar go hard into reverse in late trade on Tuesday, unwinding earlier gains for a second consecutive session. At 8.10am AEDT, the Aussie was down 0.22% to 0.7339.

Investing.comAUD/USD Hourly Chart

3. Bond markets have also sent a warning with benchmark US 10-year bond yields falling 8 basis points to 2.91%, as markets reassess the outlook for interest rate hikes and global growth. That left the 2-10 year yield spread — a well-known recession indicator — at just 11 basis points, around half what it was a week ago. More from markets here.

4. It’s Australian GDP day! The September quarter report will be released at 11.30am AEDT. While a lagging economic indicator, revealing what happened in the past, it still has significant implications for unemployment, inflation, investment, household incomes and government tax receipts in the future. Business Insider will have all the details once it hits the screens, but in the meantime you can get up to speed by reading David Scutt’s 10-second guide here.

5. While we’re taking about markets, Morgan Stanley has revealed the four themes it thinks will determine the course of Australia’s economy in 2019. Among them, housing is “the key headwind facing the economy”, but the government’s projected budget surplus could provide an important offset. See the other three here.

6. Still wondering all this recent markets news means for the future of the global financial landscape? Well, Ray Dalio has a few things to say about it. Speaking at Business Insider’s IGNITION conference this week, Dalio outlined why he thinks the next financial crisis will be different from the last, and placed great emphasis on a successful resolution to the trade war.

7. Theresa May’s government has been found in contempt of parliament after it refused to release official legal advice on the PM’s Brexit deal. It spells serious trouble for May as she prepares for an upcoming parliamentary vote on the deal.

8. Uber has done little to downplay speculation that it is about to swoop for one of the fast-growing Silicon Valley electric scooter firms, Bird or Lime. (If you live in Sydney you may have noticed a influx of green bikes popping up on street corners — that’s Lime.) The company says it’s constantly approached by firms “wanting to partner with us, looking for acquisitions” but right now its focus remains on “building our own product right now”. Time will tell.

9. Apple’s iPhone app of the year is Australian. The tech giant revealed its top iPhone and iPad apps of the year on Tuesday, including Australian-made Procreate Pocket, which came out on top as Apple’s iPhone app of the year. Download the sketching and drawing app here to try it for yourself.

10. Harvard scientists think Oumuamua, the first interstellar object ever detected in our solar system, could be an alien spacecraft. The scientists sought to explain a quirk in Oumuamua’s behaviour, which led them to an unusual conclusion. No one knows what Oumuamua is or where it came from, and it’s too late to find out for sure.

BONUS ITEM: Business Insider recently attended the 2018 New York motorcycle show and this was one of the best bikes we foudn — a Forty-Eight Special, complete with retro 1970s graphics on the tank. Nice, huh? Check it out, and more:

Matthew DeBord/BI

Have a great day.

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