Squiz Today / 06 September 2022

Squiz Today – Tuesday, 6 September

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Squiz Today Podcast

Wherever you’re going, we’ll get you there. 

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“I’m not too old, I’m just a bit tired.”

Said A Current Affair host Tracy Grimshaw last night on her decision to step down from steering Nine’s prime-time show after 17 years. In November, she’ll be making the commitment a previous affair…

No end in sight to the cost of living crisis

The Reserve Bank is expected to raise interest rates again today by 0.5%, taking the official cash rate to 2.35%, putting more strain on millions of households already dealing with cost of living pressures. Given the cash rate was at a prolonged record low of 0.1% in April and Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe’s declaration last year that rates wouldn’t go up until 2024, the rapid pace of the rate rises over the past 5 months has given many mortgage holders whiplash. If it goes as expected, today’s announcement means households servicing a $500,000 mortgage will have to find an extra $150/month. Since the hikes started in April, it’s an extra $530/month. Ouch…

And those increasing costs aren’t set to come down any time soon. PM Anthony Albanese has confirmed the federal government’s cut to fuel excise will end this month – he says it was a difficult decision, but it’s too much to continue to cover. The cost of fuel has been reduced by 22c/litre since March, and Treasurer Jim Chalmers says the return of the full 44.2c excise will boost revenue. He’s also tasked the competition watchdog with cracking down on price gouging to ensure the price at the pump is no higher than necessary. But it’s not just the price of fuel going up with renters struggling, electricity bills are sky high – and watermelon is a contender to become the next iceberg lettuce…

Well, 4.7 million low-income Aussies on welfare payments will get an indexation boost (aka an adjustment for inflation) on 20 September. It’s the biggest half-yearly rise in more than 30 years for allowances (like Newstart for the unemployed) and 12 years for pensions. Still, the Australian Council of Social Service boss Edwina MacDonald says it isn’t enough. That’s because “currently jobseeker is at $46 a day, youth allowance is at $38 a day and what we need in order to bring it up to the poverty line is to bring it up to at least $70 a day”. As for the rolling maul of price hikes that every Australian is dealing with, interest rate increases are the Reserve Bank’s way of putting downward pressure on inflation. Still, economists are divided on how high rates and inflation could go, but there’s agreement that we’re still climbing the hill. The Albanese Government’s new Budget, which will have to wrangle all of this, will be delivered on 25 October.

Australian News Business & Finance

Squiz the Rest

Killers on the run in Canada

A search is underway for 2 men believed to be behind a series of stabbings that has left 10 people dead and at least 15 others wounded in 13 locations across the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan. Police started receiving violence reports at 5.40am on Sunday (local time) in the small Indigenous James Smith Cree Nation community, where most of the attacks occurred, followed by the nearby village of Weldon. They say some of the victims were likely targeted, and others were attacked randomly – and the motive behind the violence is still unclear. The suspects are 31yo Damien Sanderson and 30yo Myles Sanderson, who were last seen driving a stolen car 320km south of the first attacks, and police have issued alerts in the neighbouring provinces of Alberta and Manitoba.

Crime World News

Liz Truss is the UK’s new PM

Foreign Minister Liz Truss will be sworn in as the UK’s 56th prime minister after winning the final round of the Conservative Party’s leadership contest. She beat former Chancellor Rishi Sunak (and a late challenge Larry the #10 Downing Street cat…) 81,326 votes to 60,399, winning 57% of the vote 2 months after Boris Johnson resigned under a cloud of COVID breaches and mishandling promotions within his team. Calling the last few weeks “one of the longest job interviews in history,” Truss awkwardly acknowledged Johnson and committed to lowering taxes, sorting out the UK’s energy crisis, and supporting the health system. Truss might be riding high as she makes her way to meet with the Queen at Balmoral but so is inflation, which is sitting at a 40-year high of 10.1%. Despite the challenges, Truss has promised $50 billion in tax cuts in an emergency budget later this month.

World News

Chile votes against new constitution

In a blow to President Gabriel Boric, Chile’s new left-wing leader, the country has overwhelmingly voted against a progressive new constitution. In 2020, nearly 80% of Chileans supported the drafting of a new constitution to replace its current one, which dates back to 1980 during the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. And after 36yo Boric was swept to power in March, his administration began drafting a new constitution that enshrined women’s rights, environmental protection, universal healthcare, and recognised Chile’s Indigenous peoples for the first time. But a referendum on Sunday revealed many were unhappy with the proposal, with 62% voting against it, according to the Chile Electoral Service. Boric said he accepted the results with “humility” and pledged to have another go.

World News

Netflix ads to start in November

After initially planning to launch a cheaper subscription plan with ads next year, Netflix has brought forward its launch date to 1 November to try and keep eyeballs on its platform. Reports say the streaming giant decided to bump the date to get in before Disney+ launches its own ad-supported plan in December. Netflix will first launch its new offer in a handful of countries, including Oz and the US, where its ad-loaded base offer is expected to cost between $10-$13/month. After a decade of growth, the streamer is losing subscribers to cost of living pressures and competing platforms – something that’s set to worsen if its rivals’ viewership numbers are anything to go by. HBO’s new Game of Thrones spinoff House of the Dragon (which is on Binge here)is doing well – but not as well as its predecessor. And Amazon Prime says The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power was its biggest-ever series debut. Its opening scene certainly reminds of us something


Aussies endure at the US Open

Wow. Nick Kyrgios dethroned men’s world #1 Daniil Medvedev in 4 sets at Flushing Meadows yesterday. The Canberran is currently ranked world #25 but has proven himself a top contender after making it to the Wimbledon final against Novak Djokovic in July – a run that’s continued during the US Open. It’s the first time Kyrgios has made it to the grand slam’s quarter-final, where he’ll face 27th seed Karen Khachanov tomorrow morning. “I want to go all the way, and hopefully, it’s possible,” he said. Another Aussie who advanced yesterday is Ajla Tomljanović, who defeated Ludmilla Samsonova in straight sets, fresh from her win against Serena Williams on Saturday. Like Kyrgios, it’s the first time she’s reached the final 8 at the US Open, and she’ll face off against 5th seed Ons Jabeur on Wednesday. Go you good things…


Apropos of Nothing

Manhattanites and visitors to the Big Apple have marvelled at the inventive outdoor dining arrangements that evolved out of the COVID era. Some really hate it, others say it’s transformed the city. And like every good story based in NYC, it’s complicated.

One thing that’s not complicated is big-box drinks retailer Dan Murphy’s Christmas hiring process. It’s offering 10-minute walk-in job interviews in stores across the country over the next couple of weeks in the hope of filling 2,200 roles. Cheers to that…

We buried the lead yesterday on the Emmys front… The Sydney-based producers of Love on the Spectrum US have won 3 Emmy awards for outstanding unstructured reality program, outstanding picture editing for unstructured reality program, and outstanding casting for a reality program. Karina Holden from Sydney’s Northern Pictures said the win “blew my mind” – in a good way, we hope…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

2.20pm (AEST) – Cricket – 1st ODI – Australia v New Zealand – Cairns

7.00pm (AEST) – A state funeral is held for musician Judith Durham – Melbourne

7.40pm (AEST) – Women’s Soccer – Australia v Canada – Sydney

Reserve Bank board makes a decision on interest rates at its monthly meeting

Booker shortlist announced

ABS Data Release – Monthly Household Spending Indicator, July

A birthday for actor Idris Elba (1972)

Anniversary of:
• Ferdinand Magellan’s Spanish expedition aboard the Vitoria returning to Spain becoming the first to circumnavigate the earth (1522)
• the Mayflower departing Plymouth, England for the New World (1620)
• the first supermarket, the Piggly Wiggly, being opened in Memphis, Tennessee (1916)
• the premiere of TV sitcom The Brady Bunch (1969)
• the funeral of Princess Diana (1997)
• the deaths of opera great Luciano Pavarotti (2007), actor Burt Reynolds (2018) and former Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe (2019)

Squiz the Day

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