Good morning! Here’s your run-down for Monday.
- Tony Abbott will be at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week. He’s told The Australian that he wants to see the country’s chairing of the G20 this year make a “practical difference” ($). The G20’s business advisory group, the B20, is chaired by Wesfarmers boss Richard Goyder who outlines in the paper some of the things business is looking for out of the G20 agenda this year: a trade deal on services industries, and an expansion of the Information Technology Agreement (which eliminates duties on IT products) in WTO talks.
- We’re getting towards the business end of the Australian Open. Sadly Casey Dellacqua was knocked out by Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard. Dellacqua won the first set in a tie-break but it all went to pancake mix after that, with Bouchard taking the following two sets 6-2, 6-0. The monster upset of the weekend – Serena Williams being knocked out by a resurgent Ana Ivanovic – means the draw’s wide open for the women.
- The Australian dollar continued its slide over the weekend, and is now below US88c.
- In a plan aimed at recovering “billions” of dollars in tax revenue, the ATO is looking at an amnesty under which wealthy people who’ve squirrelled away money could avoid going to jail.
- Energy giant Shell issued a profit warning on Friday night, and there are expectations that Australian operations and investments will be top of the list as management assesses its response.
- There’s more on the possible $3 billion float of Qantas’s frequent flyer program ($)this morning, with Macquarie and Citi the favourites to lead the process, according to Street Talk. Also on Qantas, The Australian says the numbers aren’t there in federal parliament for a change to the Qantas Sale Act which restricts foreign ownership levels in the airline.
- EY is predicting a huge year for IPOs. What a difference from May last year when we reported M&A types had been resorting to cold-calling CEOs. This year EY expects IPO activity to return to pre-GFC levels, with Australia the fourth-biggest market.
- It was another messy and dangerous weekend on the streets of Sydney, with the riot squad having to intervene after a brawl on George St, a bloke taken to hospital after being punched in the face leaving a bar, and a 16-year-old girl charged with assault. All this increases pressure on the state government to do something – expect some announcements this week, possibly as early as today. If only they could outlaw utter stupidity.
- This rope climber is chipper after breaking his legs in twenty places from a fall over the weekend. A topless girl sunbaking distracted him and he fell 7m.
- Manchester United’s defence of the EPL is over – a 3-1 loss to Chelsea this morning has left them 14 points behind table-toppers Arsenal. The season has gone from bad to approaching embarrassing for Utd, with the loss this morning, thanks to a hat-trick by Samuel Eto’o, being almost predictable.
Bonus item: A top-shelf Twitter spray from One Direction’s Liam Payne, who’s filthy about how everything he says or does is reported as news. Example: “WTF I bought dinner the other day it made a news story.”
I’m on Twitter: @colgo
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