10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

How’s your commute this morning? Picture: Getty Images

Good morning.

1. It’s the last day of federal budget leaks and what we do know already is that treasurer Scott Morrison has some better-than-expected cash available to splash around. And it looks like he’ll be spending a chunk of it on retirees, with a scheme allowing them to borrow 150% of the age pension against the value of property they own, tax-free. If that doesn’t scream “baby boomer election budget”, nothing does. But there are sweeteners for younger voters too. Here are all the other things what we know so far about what you’ll be getting tonight.

2. To markets, and the ASX looks like it will follow yesterday’s solid lead after US stocks rose again in the wake of Friday’s “Goldilocks” employment data. The US dollar hit a 2018 high overnight, and the Aussie ran out of steam and fell back towards US75 cents but miners are looking good after iron ore hit a two-week high last night. In data, retail sales is out at 11.30am. Here’s why David Scutt reckons it could move markets more than the budget.

3. An Israeli minister threatened to kill Syrian President Bashar Assad following a report Iran is preparing a massive missile attack against Israel. So here’s how Israel versus Syria may turn into Russia versus US. Worse, here’s some dessert served in a shoe:


Specifically, served in a shoe and fed to Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe when he dropped in on Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu. Which was an odd, “stupid and insensitive” choice.

4. Former Australian prime minister and legend Bob Hawke is in hospital. The 88-year-old was admitted to Sydney’s Royal North Shore Hospital yesterday for “treatment”, but Labor sources say it’s for minor tests and “nothing serious”. All the best, Bob.

5. 20 years ago, Steve Jobs launched the iMac and put Apple back on track. Apple CEO Tim Cook just shared a video of that landmark moment, which you can view here. Who would have thought it would eventually innovate this amazing “iPhone city” where 350,000 Chinese workers grind out dozens of hours in overtime screwing in the same screw thousands of times during six-day working weeks for low pay and are lucky to see their spouses. Harrison Jacobs went for a look and brought back all the magical pics.

6. At least lava isn’t destroying their homes. Here’s what a roadblock looks like on Hawaii’s Big Island right now:


More than 1,700 residents have been evacuated from one housing estate, and at least 30 homes destroyed after lava vents from the Kilauea volcano began opening nearby late last week. It’s a big one, and still growing. Here’s the best of the incredible pics and footage.

7. There’s been a run on “insiders” and “friends” talking to New Idea The Washington Post about the Trumps’ marriage. The first lady, Melania, is head of a campaign against cyberbullying and apparently, she is aware “her husband is part of the problem”. The Post reckons the White House would prefer she chose another cause to champion. And the “friend” told The Post Melania and Donald spend “little to no time together”.

8. In other royal news, Meghan Markle’s relationship with Prince Harry looks a lot different than Kate Middleton’s relationship with Prince William, so we asked two relationship experts what those differences might mean for the two marriages. And they’ll live in the ultimate share house – Kensington Palace is home to 15 high-ranking royals:

Samantha Lee/Business InsiderThe many royals of Kensington Palace, and where they live. The arrows points towards Buckingham Palace, where Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip live.

Here’s a breakdown of all their lavish quarters.

9. Even if you couldn’t wait to leave, resigning from your job can be stressful. If you prefer to do it with a letter, here’s the quick, sensible way to pen it that also means you won’t burn your bridges on the way out.

10. An anonymous gambler laid out $US18 on five races on Kentucky Derby day and correctly predicted the winner of all of them. One of them included a 40/1 longshot, and when her last bet, the easiest at 3/1, came in, the $US18 gambler took home $US1.2 million. A good day at the track.

BONUS ITEM: How Russell Crowe repaid John Oliver for buying his leather jockstrap is the most beautiful thing in the world today:

Have a great day.

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