Squiz Today / 04 July 2023

Squiz Today – Tuesday, 4 July

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Squiz Today Podcast

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Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“I can’t imagine we’ll be having a beer with them any time soon.”

Said England’s cricket coach Brendon McCullum after Aussie wicketkeeper Alex Carey stumped Jonny Bairstow in “bizarre” fashion. Our captain Pat Cummins says Bairstow – who is England’s wicketkeeper – targeted Aussie batsman David Warner in the same way. It’s an unseemly fight that’s just not cricket…

It’s the first Tuesday of the month…


Strap yourself in for another Reserve Bank decision on interest rates… The central bank’s board will get together today to make a call on whether the cash rate should be raised again or whether to hold tight as they continue their mission to rein in national inflation. The official cash rate sits at 4.10% after 12 quickfire rises over the past 14 months. And while there’s been promising signs over the past month that the inflation rate is on its way down, what the RBA will announce this afternoon is anybody’s guess


Gladly. You might recall last week’s news that inflation in the 12 months to May had dropped to 5.6% from 6.8% in April, beating economists’ predictions. It’s also the lowest rate recorded in 12 months. And while that was welcomed, it’s still well above the Reserve Bank’s 2-3% target. One of the biggest contributors to May’s inflation figure was housing, and yesterday, new data from the Bureau of Stats backed that up. New housing approvals jumped by 20% nationally in May, while CoreLogic data showed a slight recovery in house prices in most capital cities in June. Retail data is another important one to note… Reports say shoppers took advantage of early EOFY sales in May, leading to a 0.7% rise in retail sales – above economists’ predictions. So, on the one hand, the official data shows that inflation’s falling – usually, that’s because we’re not out spending. On the other, the official data shows us out spending. Insert shrugging lady emoji…


The cash rate is expected to increase a couple more times this year. Whether that’s today or later, the experts say it’s a’comin… So really, it’s a question about where our economy is heading. A survey of 27 Australian economists showed nearly all of them expect Oz to fall into a ‘per capita recession’ that would see living standards go backwards as economic growth stalls and population growth rises. And despite agreeing that inflation’s on the way down, they expect the cash rate to peak at 4.7% in November before dropping to 4.3% in mid-2024 and 3.9% by the end of next year. A lot can happen between now and then, so hang in there…


Squiz the Rest

More fallout for PwC…

It was a busy day one for the National Anti-Corruption Commission, with its leader Paul Brereton revealing it had received 44 referrals yesterday. One of those was from Greens Senator Barbara Pocock, who is pushing for an investigation into PwC after revelations that staff leaked confidential government information to clients. The consulting firm yesterday released the findings of its own investigation into the handling of sensitive Treasury information about future tax strategies targeting companies that send profits offshore. And it named 8 partners who have been sacked, including former Aussie boss Tom Seymour who was not involved in the scandal, but it happened on his watch. “Accountability is critical to improving our culture, and based on our investigation to date, it is clear that the conduct of a number of partners fell short of what was expected of them. They are now being held accountable,” PwC said in a statement.

AusPol Australian News Business & Finance Crime

Russia forges ahead in Ukraine

After the turmoil of the last 10 days, Ukraine’s Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar yesterday said that Russian troops are advancing in 4 areas in the east of the country with some “fierce fighting”, but local forces are making some ground in the south. But there are conflicting reports about what’s happening around Bakhmut – the eastern city that’s of no particular strategic importance but saw heavy losses before Russia prevailed and took control in May. On the weekend, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said 21,000 Wagner fighters from Russia were killed in eastern Ukraine in the war, and another 80,000 had been wounded. Zelensky’s claims about the “enormous” losses come a week after the mercenaries’ boss Yevgeny Prigozhin led his men in a rebellion against Moscow before calling it off and felling to Belarus.

World News

Turning up the heat in June

For all the complaining we’ve done about how cold it is, June was the hottest on record in eastern Australia for maximum temperatures. Keep in mind the Bureau of Meteorology has not declared the formation of an El Niño in the Pacific, but they reckon the dry/hot weather pattern is coming… On the western side, the Indian Ocean off the northwest coast has had low rainfall, suggesting that the warm and dry conditions could become a nationwide thing in the following months. Also feeling our pain is the UK – it’s had its hottest June on record, and the local fauna and flora have copped a real battering. And that heat-induced tension headache could be something else entirely… Researchers from the Natural History Museum in California say there could be a link between past climate changes and a fall in the size of the human brain. No more calling us big heads…

Australian News Weather World News

Get your Wimbledon on

It was something many Aussie tennis fans hoped for, but Nick Kyrgios has pulled out of Wimbledon with a wrist injury. The Canberran made the final last year, losing out to Novak Djokovic – and it was hoped the renegade roller coaster was on the cusp of realising his immense talent. But since then, it’s been nothing but injuries and trying to recover. “I am disappointed to say that I just didn’t have enough time to manage it before Wimbledon. I’ll be back, and, as always, I appreciate the support from all my fans,” he said. Alex de Minaur, Australia’s top-seeded hope at 15, and former great Todd Woodbridge likes his chances. “For a modern player, he is a fairly natural grass courter,” he said – which we think is a good thing… Nine Aussies – 7 men and 2 women – are having a crack in the tournament that kicked off overnight – and good luck, one and all.


Orkney wants out

Like a disgruntled family member who can’t stand their nearest and dearest, the Orkney Islands in Scotland are considering the possibility of becoming a territory of distant rellie Norway. The Orkney Council is investigating alternative forms of government, including re-establishing its historic “Nordic connections”. Residents of the islands, which were under Norwegian and Danish control until 1472, claim they do not receive adequate funding from the Scottish and British governments. And council leader James Stockan argues that Orkney’s historical ties with the lands from whence the Vikings came make exploring the current-day possibilities valuable. Any changes in status or leaving the UK would require referendums and agreements with the British and Scottish governments. Brexit the sequel, anyone?

World News

Apropos of nothing

Anyone who’s moved house probably understands the struggle of shifting all your earthly possessions… But some NYC apartment buildings have a workaround: shared items – from sewing machines to crockery sets – that residents can loan for free. Marie Kondo would approve…

South Korea has debuted its first robot orchestral conductor to mixed reviews… ‘EveR 6’, as it’s known, bowed to the audience before using its mechanical arms to control the (human) musos’ tempo through 3 pieces in front of a live audience.

And a Philippines advertising agency has been busted using vision from other countries in a tourism ad for the country. But Indonesian and Swiss tourism boards might be feeling ok that their countries snagged a free plug…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

2.30pm (AEST) – Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe announces latest interest rate decision

Independence Day – US

2023 Birdsville Big Red Bash begins (until 6 July)

Post Malone’s birthday (1995)

Anniversary of:
• Charles Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) creating the story of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland for Alice Liddell on a family boat trip in Oxford (1862)
• the launch of hotmail.com, the first free web-based email service (1996)
• North Korea testing their first successful intercontinental ballistic missile (2017)
• the deaths of Thomas Jefferson (1826), Marie Curie (1934) and Barry White (2003)
• wedding anniversaries for Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne (1982), David and Victoria Beckham (1999) and Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis (2015)

Squiz the Day

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