1. The NSW-Victoria border closes at midnight tonight. Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said he, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, and Prime Minister Scott Morrison “agreed that the best thing to do is to close the border" as COVID-19 cases continue to increase in the southern state. There was an increase of 127 cases yesterday, and two deaths.
2. But if you're a Melburnian hoping to make a mad dash across the border today, you're out of luck. Anyone from Greater Melbourne isn't allowed to cross into NSW as of now, unless they obtain a special permit for a very limited range of allowed activities, like obtaining medical care or fulfilling a legal obligation.
3. The World Health Organisation is reviewing a report that suggests coronavirus can be transmitted by tiny particles in the air. This would be a worrying change from the currently accepted knowledge that coronavirus is transmitted through large droplets expelled by coughs, sneezes and speech.
4. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern indicated on Monday that the latest spike of COVID-19 cases in Victoria could delay a travel bubble between the country and Australia. There is a glimmer of hope that NZ could instead work out state-based travel bubbles – which would obviously preclude Victoria at this moment.
5. The cost of a second wave of COVID-19 infections to the Australian economy has been pegged at $100 billion by Deloitte economists. Describing a potential resurgence as “a disaster”, Deloitte Access Economics partner Chris Richardson forecast that, even if we manage to dodge a second wave, the economy would struggle to recover. “Families are struggling with the toxic trio of high debt, high unemployment, and low confidence, and 2020 is a shocker of a year," Richardson said. "The ranks of the unemployed will be badly swollen for a while."
6. Afterpay is seeking to raise $800 million in fresh equity, and its founders are looking to sell a $250 million stake, according to the AFR. The deal, which is worth a combined $1.05 billion, was slated to launch with the institutional placement of new shares and founder selldown on Tuesday morning.
7. TikTok's new Australian boss has hit back at calls for the app to be banned on national security grounds. Lee Hunter, who has walked into one hell of a new job, denied that the Bytedance-owned app shares data with the Chinese government. "TikTok does not share information of our users in Australia with any foreign government, including the Chinese government, and would not do so if asked," he said. "We place the highest importance on user privacy and integrity."
8. Uber on Monday confirmed earlier reports that it would buy the food-delivery company Postmates for $US2.65 billion in an all-stock deal. Postmates was founded by Bastian Lehmann, Sam Street, and Sean Plaice in 2011. It serves the US and is headquartered in San Francisco. Uber has been circling around several smaller food-delivery businesses over the past few years, attempting to buy Grubhub and Deliveroo.
9. Some Silicon Valley companies have been listed as recipients of the US government's Paycheck Protection Program, which is basically like the US version of JobKeeper. These include Andreessen Horowitz, the Burning Man festival, Bird, Eat Club, and Enjoy. This is controversial because the PPP – unlike JobKeeper, which is far more broad-based – takes the form of low-interest loans specifically intended for small businesses, not larger firms.
10. Reddit and LinkedIn are making changes to their apps after Apple's big new iPhone update caught them snooping. The new update exposed the fact both apps were copying content from the clipboard without user consent. Reddit is releasing a fix for its app on July 14, while LinkedIn recently said it had released a new version of its app to the App Store that removes this functionality. TikTok was also caught doing this recently.
If you need a pick-me-up this morning, why not stress about your data?