10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Blue OriginAn illustration of Blue Origin’s reusable New Glenn rocket launching toward space.

Good morning.

1. US bond yields rose across the curve on Wednesday, hitting multi-year highs in the process. Strong US economic data was the catalyst with service sector activity improving at the second-fastest pace on record while hiring in the private sector surged in September. The lift in US yields helped to fuel strong gains in the greenback. In the past, the combination of higher US yields and dollar has not gone down well in emerging markets. More here.

2. The Australian dollar has been smoked, tumbling against most major crosses on Wednesday. It’s now threatening to hit fresh multi-year lows against the greenback. The catalyst behind the move was a spike in US bond yields following the release of strong US economic data. This helped propel the US dollar higher. At 7am AEST, the Aussie was down 1.17% to 0.7102.

Investing.comAUD/USD Daily Chart

3. Jeff Bezos plans to build and launch a “large lunar lander” in his quest to colonise space. Blue Origin, Bezos’ 18-year-old rocket company, has revealed it plans to eventually land on the lunar surface and scout for resources like water, which can be mined and converted into rocket fuel. Read more on how and why Bezos wants to go back to the moon here.

4. Eighty-two days. That’s how long on average it takes to find a new job in Australia, according to analysis by global jobs site Indeed. The company’s report — Job Hunter: The Complete Guide 2018 — shows 90% of job seekers admit to not being aware of all job opportunities when searching for a job. And 3.7 million Australian job hunters don’t know what job they are searching for when they start looking.

5. New Zealand can now fine you $4,600 if you don’t hand over your phone password at the border, after it passed a law giving customs officials new powers to search travellers’ phones.The move has irked rights groups which say the new Customs and Excise Act 2018 is an invasion of privacy.

6. Sydney International Airport was shut down this morning following a mayday call from a United Airlines flight. Flight UA839 Los Angeles to Sydney made the call around 6.30am as a precaution because of low fuel levels. Despite authorities saying there was no real threat to passengers onboard the flight, it activated a full emergency response below. The airport has since returned to normal operations.

7. Millennials’ indifference or outright disdain have sent a wide range of industries into a slump in recent years. From golf equipment makers to razor manufacturers, changing millennial tastes have hit some companies hard. Here’s a list of industries that are struggling to keep up.

8. There’s a worldwide penguin shortage and it has forced a UK zoo to use fake penguins in its enclosure. The shortage of the flightless birds has been caused by an outbreak of avian malaria, a bird-specific type of malaria that has a mortality rate of around 60%. Meanwhile visitors to the zoo have called the plastic models “weird” and “disappointing”.

9. Fan Bingbing, the Chinese actress who recently vanished from public life, has broken her silence with a groveling apology to the Chinese government, to which she owes $US129 million. “Without the Party and country’s good policies, without the love of the people, there would be no Fan Bingbing,” she said. The actress had not been seen for three months after she was accused of tax evasion by splitting her earnings into two contracts.

10. Thailand has closed its iconic bay from “The Beach” after a temporary pause in visitors wasn’t enough to repair destruction by tourists. More than 80% of the coral around Maya Bay has reportedly been destroyed because of pollution from litter, boats, and sunscreen.

BONUS ITEM: Watch this food delivery guy in Melbourne’s inner east sneak a chip from an order before handing it over to the customer.

Have a great day.

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