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10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Jack Derwin

Good morning folks. This is what's cracking.

1. China is bracing for a second wave of COVID-19 infections, in what could be a troubling sign of things to come for the rest of the world. The country has shut down Beijing schools in preparation of a resurgence of the coronavirus, despite taking one of the most comprehensive defensive fronts against it.

2. The PM has conceded that some Australian businesses simply won't be saved as part of Australia's first recession in 30 years. Businesses that don't make it through could be as high as one in six, according to one forecaster. Meanwhile, it's going to take two years for us to even get what we lost this year, and five years of runaway growth to get back on track long term. Strap yourselves in.

3. You can expect a lot more businesses to 'pivot' and diversify as a result. Take DoorDash, the food delivery service, which now promises to deliver hair and beauty products to your door as part of a big deal with Australian company HairHouse. Is the demand for fake tan so urgent as to demand personal door-to-door delivery by bicycle? I couldn't say.

4. Speaking of fake tan, the Trump administration appears hell-bent on doing everything it can to stop any light being shed on its dysfunctional first term. It's suing John Bolton, Trump's former national security advisor and notorious Iran hawk, citing contractural and security breaches in an attempt to stop the publication of his tell-all book. Bolton has said while he's taken care to avoid releasing any classified information, he does have new details to do with Trump’s efforts to strongarm Ukraine into delivering political dirt against former Vice President Joe Biden -- an affair central to Trump's impeachment hearing. Here's possibly a better argument against its author.

5. The federal government's HomeBuilder scheme may be too little, too late. New data shows Australians were already spending big on renovations and home improvements during the pandemic, and with no incentive from Canberra to do so. With the country's tradies already busy, it suggests maybe the $680 million-odd could be better spent elsewhere. It's not the first time the scheme has faced criticism.

6. If you don't have children, you're perhaps unfamiliar with the cartoon "Bluey" but frankly, you're missing out. The television juggernaut, and self-described "sitcom for kids", has won hearts and minds the world over, making it a true Australian success story. Business Insider Australia spoke to the co-founders of the show to find out the secret to making a global sensation.

7. Airbnb has given its biggest indication yet of what holiday stays might look like from here on out and it's apocalyptic. In a 38-page manual, the short-term stay giant instructs owners to wear a head-to-toe suit of personal protective equipment (PPE) for example, among other strict cleaning rules. If they can't, or won't abide by the practices, Airbnb suggests they simply leave 72-hour buffers between bookings for peace of mind.

8. Younger Aussies have basically been smacked by a recession the minute they left high school but there is one silver lining: they're better off under JobKeeer anyway. The latest payroll data showed that under 20s were the only group who saw their incomes actually rise since the businesses shut down, as they started pocketing those sweet $1,500 fortnightly payments. Unable to go into many of their workplaces in April and May anyway, the 5.4% pay rise has basically been money for jam for the youngsters. But don't get too excited kids. You're still worse off than the rest of us.

9. Punters could soon be whisked between Las Vegas casinos by way of a series of underground tunnels if Elon Musk has his way. After completing work on the first of two connecting the strip's convention centre, two major casino operators Wynn Resorts and Resorts World want in on the action. While planning experts have slammed the idea, it sure beats walking around in the desert heat.

10. If you're a fan of the extraterrestrial, then researchers have some good news for you. Our galaxy could be home to at least 36 alien intelligent civilisations right now, researchers say. 36! I'm not going to pretend to understand the science behind that conclusion but it's a hell of a time to be alive.


"Enough doom and gloom, give us our dose of dopamine," you cry. With pleasure. Meet Hope and Elsa, the wombat and koala who have sparked the beginning of a beautiful friendship at the Australian Reptile Park.