Here’s everything you need to know in finance today.
The ASX is expected to open lower on Monday after Wall Street closed flat on Friday.
The SPI200 futures contract was down 22 points at 0700 AEDT on Monday, suggesting a soft start.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 finished only 0.1 point higher on Friday, while the Aussie dollar is buying 69.76 US cents, up from 69.54 US cents on Friday.
Queensland fireys also need compensation: After the federal government agreed to provide some compensation to NSW volunteer firefighters, the Queensland premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk has called for equal compensation for fireys in Queensland.
“"Queensland's volunteer firefighters deserve the same level of federal government support as do other volunteer firefighters across the country," Palaszczuk said in a statement.
"I made that clear to the Prime Minister during our phone conversation on Saturday evening. Queensland has not refused the offer.”
South Australian fireys will receive the same compensation as NSW firefighters, the SA state government has also confirmed.
Fireworks to go ahead: Prime Minister Scott Morrison has supported Sydney’s New Year’s Eve fireworks, which are anticipated to make $130 million for the NSW economy.
The NSW Rural Fire Service has said it’s unlikely the controversial display will be hampered by fire bans.
"Sydney is one of the first cities in the world that welcomes in the new year and if it's safe to do so, we should continue to do it as we've done every other year,” Premier Gladys Berejiklian said.
Worst passwords: If your new year’s resolution is to boost your online security, updating your passwords is a good place to start. But you’d better steer clear of these passwords, considered the ‘worst’ passwords of 2019.
Not so jolly Christmas for retailers: Australia’s retailers struggled through the Christmas spending season, which has been hit by economic headwinds, a lack of consumer confidence and widespread bushfires.
Passports: If you’ve ever applied for a visa, you know the process can be equally frustrating and tedious, but for some lucky people, they rarely have to even apply.
The Passport Index has named the 10 most powerful passports of the decade, noting that the world has “considerably opened up in the past decade”.
Got a home loan? There’s one major mistake you need to avoid, explains money expert Nicole Pederson-Mckinnon.
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