10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Stefan Postles/Getty ImagesScott Morrison started a new job in August.

1. The final week of #AusVotes19 has kicked off with the Liberal Party officially launching its campaign on Sunday with a no frills event. At the event, Prime Minister Scott Morrison unveiled a new first home buyers scheme, in a last ditch effort to woo young Australians. It will allow eligible buyers to purchase property with a 5% deposit.

2. The Facebook break-up bandwagon has gained a powerful new member as 2020 US presidential hopeful Kamala Harris says the notion is worth a “serious look”. The California Democrat’s comments follow Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes’s scathing New York Times op-ed, which called Facebook’s power “unprecedented and un-American”.

3. Good news for the Aussie economy as iron ore prices climbed to fresh new multi-year highs. The cyclical high follows similar positive sounds coming out of China’s steel market.

4. Flat tyre for Uber. The ridesharing company’s s rise has been a wild ride, but listing on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday, Uber’s stock closed down 6.7% resulting in a cumulative loss of $US655 million. It was the worst first-day loss ever for a US IPO. Ouch.

5. Backwards billionaires. A list of the 15 countries with the most billionaires in the world has been compiled by researcher Wealth-X. The United States dominates with 27% of the world’s billionaires, while poor-performing equity markets have hammered the top 1% in China, India and Singapore. Australia didn’t even make the cut. Poor Gina Rinehart must be so lonely.

Gina Rinehart. (Paul Kane/Getty Images)

6. Whoever said there’s never any good news anymore? Macquarie Group has revealed the names of inspiring not-for-profits, which are in the running to win $10 million each as part of the Aussie investment bank’s 50th birthday celebrations. Here’s how these organisations are making the world a better place.

7. The Aussie dollar has held its ground, opening the week largely unchanged despite lots of noise about escalating trade tensions. It followed the US announcing it would lift existing tariffs on $US200 billion worth of Chinese imports from 10% to 25%.

8. Britain’s Brexit bungle. It seems the UK’s political troubles are still not getting any better, with talks going nowhere and no legislation on the table to end the instability. For those wondering what the hell is going on in Westminster, Business Insider UK’s Adam Bienkov offers an update on the “Brexit coma”.

9. While government MPs are out on the stump painting a rosy picture, the Reserve Bank has issued a much darker assessment. Australia’s central bank has downgraded economic forecasts for GDP and underlying inflation.

10. Pancakes and politics just don’t mix! America’s iconic IHOP pancake chain is being educated on Twitter for a Mother’s Day gag that showed a stack of pancakes in photo of an ultrasound. As people were quick to point out, the stomach and uterus are different organs. The restaurant’s social media folks probably should have studied more anatomy.


Good news not just for iron ore and select not-for-profits, but also for this pooch, who has – presumably after years of attempts – caught his own tail. We hope your day is as successful.

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