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5 things you need to know today

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Published on: Thursday, January 18, 2018

  • Bitcoin has seen its price drop significantly by more that 20% to well under $US11,000 after the South Korean Finance Minister said in a radio interview that a ban on trading cryptocurrencies was a live option. This follows a sell-off last week when the idea of a law to ban trading was raised by the Minister. 
  • Three Australians have been arrested in Serbia over a $500 million cocaine shipment. Police alleged the men are part of an international drug-smuggling group and  "are linked to" the discovery of 1,280 kilograms of cocaine that was seized last April on a boat docked in Sydney.
  • The Aussie dollar has hit a four-month high of 80.22 US cents as of 6:30am thismorning. The current catalysts to this high include a weaker US dollar, a stronger global economy, higher commodity prices and an improving Australian economy according to Commonwealth Bank's chief currency strategist, Richard Grace.
  • There has been community outrage on the Central Coast after the NSW government gave the greenlight to the Wallarah 2 coal mine. In 2011 the then Minister for Planning rejected the application due to its issues realting to imapcts on drinking water and when negotiations failed between its owner and the Aboriginal Land Council for a $300 million rail access. However, the miner has since overcome this issue by using an overland conveyor system.
  • It has been a good start for the markets thismorning. The Dow Jones index, rose by 1%  to 26,059, the S&P 500 alsao rose 1% to 2,804, and the Nasdaq was also up, 1.1% at 7,302. In Europe, the FTSE finished lower, 0.4% to 7,725, the German DAX fell 0.5% at 13,184.

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