Hello! Here’s what’s happening on Wednesday.
1. US President Donald Trump had a meltdown at the “alt-left” over the Charlottesville protests. He said the weekend’s events, in which a woman died, was a “horrible moment for our country,” but that “there are two sides to a story” and “not all of those people were neo-Nazis”.
2. The former chief of staff to Brexit boss David Davis has gone postal at his old boss on Twitter. James Chapman, the one-time Daily Mail political editor went on a 250 tweet rampage against Davis, accusing him of being work-shy and a liar as part of a growing online campaign against Brexiteers that’s also targeted Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg.
3. The world’s top 20 banks faced misconduct charges worth £264 ($A433) billion. The figures span conduct charges between 2012 and 2016, and have increased of nearly a third compared to 2008-2012. Bank of America was the most fined bank, racking up £45.6 ($A75) billion-worth of charges.
4. The first round of NAFTA renegotiations gets underway today. The North American Free Trade Agreement was a major part of Trump’s 2016 campaign and he will meet with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Washingon, DC, August 16-20 with no official timeline for how long these talks will run.
5. Bank of America is warning of an “ominous” sign for stocks. After a surge in corporate profits pushed US shares to record levels, money managers are worried about earnings growth, with the bank’s latest survey noting a drop in managers who think profits will improve to 33%, down from 58% at the start of 2017.
6. The IMF is starting to freak out about China’s debt levels. The International Monetary Fund describes China’s current credit growth trajectory as “dangerous” and it should ditch its annual growth targets, which have been funded on oodles of debt.
7. A $US1.6 billion startup that wants to take on Oracle just filed to go public. MongoDB, a database startup with over $300 million in venture capital financing, has confidentially filed to go public, reports TechCrunch.
8. The Philippines is sending in troops to help cull more than 600,000 fowl, following the country’s first outbreak of bird flu. The disease was discovered on a farm 75km from the capital, Manila, and has spread to 36 more farms, killing nearly 40,000 birds.
9. Australia’s main scientific organisation thinks it can find the missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370. A two-year underwater search for the Boeing 777, which disappeared on March 8, 2014, with 239 people aboard, was called off without success earlier this year and the CSIRO now believe the wreckage is to the north of the main search area in the southern Indian Ocean.
10. Daniel Craig has confirmed he’s back as James Bond. The 49-year-old actor told Stephen Colbert he’s 007 the 25th Bond movie and this time it really will be his last.
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