Good morning! Here we go.
1. The Shanghai recovery is phenomenal and by week’s end it had risen another 0.83% to 2,326. Prices are now at levels not seen for 15 months and back toward the Feb 2013 highs. The Nikkei was largely unchanged, down just 0.05% and the Hang Seng fell 0.23%.
2. It’s time for the RBA to follow words with action. Professor Ross Garnaut has given the RBA some advice about rate cuts and perhaps it should be heeded given the Aussie rallied on Friday, rising to 94 cents again before easing back to be 0.9366 at the moment. Euro is at 1.2952, USDJPY sits at 105.08 and the pound has tanked down to 1.6178 on the Scottish referendum closeness.
3. China is not Australia’s friend. So says China’s visiting foreign minister Wang Yi, who added this soother:
China may not be Australia’s closest friend at the moment but we can surely become your most sincere friend.
Wang’s visiting Australia to chat with our foreign minister Julie Bishop as a prelude to the State visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping in November and to discuss the current negotiations on the free-trade agreement. It’s possible he didn’t take too kindly to comment by PM Abbott earlier this year that Japan was Australia’s “closest friend in Asia”.
4. It’s a huge week ahead for data freaks. Tomorrow’s release of the NAB Business survey will give us the best read on what is really going on in the economy. Conditions and confidence are important but we’ll be watching the sub-indices which cover trading, profitability, forward orders and employment. Then we’ve got Westpac’s consumer sentiment number Wednesday, employment data Thursday, and Chinese trade and CPI figures.
5. “Slippergate” didn’t quite hit its mark. 60 Minutes had been promising revelations that would rock the Abbott Government all week. It turned out to be details of an alleged backroom deal that saw Education Minister Christopher Pyne promising a lawyer and job in state politics for James Ashby, the political adviser who lodged sexual harassment claims against disgraced MP Peter Slipper. Essentially it came down to Ashby’s word against a number of government MPs.
6. The Scots are making a run for it. The Yes vote for independence from Great Britain has gained incredible momentum in the past few days and is now starting to look possible. The votes will be cast on September 18, and slight lead taken by the republicans has sent the pound into a downward spiral.
7. This is amazing. We all saw stunning pictures of the lava blows from Mt Tavurvur in Papua New Guinea during the week. But Aussie Phil McNamara was on the scene when it blew and caught this huge moment when the shockwave swept out. As one spectator put it – “Hoooly smokin’ toledos.”
8. The leakiest iPhone yet is within sight. Literally, as this video appears to be genuine footage of a working iPhone 6. The real thing will be unveiled Wednesday morning our time, and if there are any surprises, we’ll be surprised. There’s been months of almost daily “leaks”. This latest video shows a new red bar with tiny credit card icon, which strongly suggests the iPhone 6 will be NFC ready for mobile payments.
9. Jack the Ripper identified. Absolutely, conclusively maybe. British author Russell Edwards watched the Johnny Depp thriller From Hell in 2001, and began an extensive armchair investigation into all the possible culprits. A few years ago, he bought a shawl at auction belonging to one of the Ripper’s victims, Catherine Eddowes, the only known piece of forensic evidence which had survived any of the crime scenes. A three-year analysis has now revealed it shares DNA with one of the suspected Rippers, a 23-year-old Polish immigrant called Aaron Kosminski.
10. Footy finals update. Sydney and Hawthorn are through to the AFL preliminary finals with a week’s rest after dusting off Freo and Geelong respectively. They’ll play the winners of Geelong and North Melbourne/Fremantle and Port Adelaide. Weekend form favours Sydney, who worked hard to shake a dogged Dockers, and Port Adelaide which dismantled the Tiger’s fairytale run with a 57-point drubbing. The Sydney Roosters are the other code’s minor premiers as the NRL signed off the regular season in typical style:
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