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On the pleasure of smoking

By Simon Chapman

Repeatedly, studies have found a large majority of smokers regret ever starting to smoke: 85% in this study, 90% in this four nation study. Each year, some 40% of smokers make an attempt to stop, with most relapsing within...

Everyone's talking but no-one's listening: it's time to reclaim the art of communication

By Olaf Werder

In a world of mass communication and social media, people seem prepared to share their opinion on almost any subject. When it comes to remembering a conversation you were involved in, in most cases the deciding factor...

How Trump's deportation plan threatens America's food and wine supply

By Mary Jo Dudley Et Al

Mass deportations of up to three million undocumented immigrants are expected to begin in January, when President-elect Donald Trump takes the oath of office and begins to turn his campaign promises into government...

10 ways the tech industry and the media helped create President Trump

By Damian Radcliffe

Three weeks after Donald Trump won a historic victory to become the 45th president of the United States, the media postmortems continue. In particular, the role played by the media and technology industries is coming...

How Castro shaped Cuban identity and what his death means to those exiled

By Michelle Gonzalez Maldonado

On Nov. 25, when I heard the news of Cuban leader Fidel Castros death, I did not feel any sense of sadness, relief or joy. Instead, as a daughter of Cuban exiles, I experienced a mix of all those emotions. Children of...

Can we rely on DIY air pollution sensors?

By Richard E. Peltier

Until recently, measuring air pollution was a task that could be performed only by trained scientists using very sophisticated and very expensive equipment. That has changed with the rapid growth of small, inexpensive...

Explainer: what is scurvy and is it making a comeback?

By Karen Charlton

A major hospital in western Sydney recently reported a number of diabetes patients were suffering from scurvy, a historical disease common in sailors on long voyages who were deprived of citrus fruit and...

The Rise and Fall of oil in popular culture

By Sofia Ahlberg

Oils pipelines now supply energy to every conceivable part of our personal and professional lives. Oil can take us practically anywhere on earth. Its social and cultural significance cannot be overstated since it fuels...

Investors and speculators aren't disrupting the water markets

By Adam James Loch Et Al

For over a decade, Australian state and federal governments have used water markets to manage water resources. Although there remains room for improvement in terms of environmental outcomes, water accounting accuracy, and...

The data that won't help the government on housing supply

By Richard Holden

Vital Signs is a weekly economic wrap from UNSW economics professor and Harvard PhD Richard Holden (@profholden). Vital Signs aims to contextualise weekly economic events and cut through the noise of the data affecting...

Why people love to delude themselves with sports rituals and superstitions

By Keis Ohtsuka

What do Lebron James, a lucky coin and a smelly goat have in common? They are all part of a rich tradition of sports superstitions. Both athletes and fans alike have looked towards these superstitions, rituals and...

After decades of research, why is AIDS still rampant?

By Maureen Miller

Today is World AIDS Day. More than three decades after the virus was first discovered, 5,753 people will become HIV infected today. About the same number will become infected tomorrow, and the same number the day after...

Italy's referendum: what's at stake and what you need to know

By Lorenzo Genito

On December 4, Italians will cast their vote in a historic referendum. The exact details of the question they are voting on are quite technical whether or not to accept constitutional reforms promoted by the centre-left...

Boredom, alienation and anxiety in the maths classroom? Here's why

By Brian Hudson

The quest for appropriate teaching and learning practices for children and young people is ongoing and ever present. A major challenge is to make maths teaching more inclusive and maths itself more accessible to a wider...

We can cut emissions in half by 2040 if we build smarter cities

By Shobhakar Dhakal

As a planet, we have some serious climate targets to meet in the coming years. The Paris Agreement, signed by 192 countries, set an aspirational goal of limiting global warming to 1.5ᵒC. The United Nations Sustainable...

Australia's Google Tax may be the second in the world but it's too early to tell if it's the 'toughest'

By Antony Antony

When introducing the draft legislation for the Diverted Profits or so-called Google Tax, Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison claimed it would: …reinforce Australias position as having amongst the toughest laws in...

How microplastics make their way up the ocean food chain into fish

By Jane Williamson Et Al

Up to 236,000 tonnes of microplastics tiny pieces of broken-down plastic smaller than your little fingernail enter our oceans each year. This has researchers around the world worried, as wildlife can be harmed by eating...

It's good the government will report GDP per capita, but it shouldn't stop there

By Ross Guest

The governments horse trading over legislation with the senate will have a profound effect on the way the government reports economic data. Part of the governments agreement with Senator Leyonhjelm to support the...

From warm to swarm: why insect activity increases in summer

By David Yeates

While the Bureau of Meteorology is predicting an increase in the average temperature this summer, entomologists are forecasting an increase in insect activity. It might seem that insects choose to annoy us over the...

Why the world needs superheroes

By Liam Burke

Superheroes were born in the United States in the late 1930s as a four-colour rebuttal to the misery of the Depression and the rise of fascism in Europe. Today, superheroes are no longer confined to America, or even the...

Trump’s Carrier coup reveals credibility gap between Twitter rhetoric and economic reality

By Wesley Widmaier

In a political coup, President-elect Donald Trump says that his transition team has struck a deal with Carriers Indianapolis plant to keep 1,000 jobs in the state. Big day on Thursday for Indiana and the great workers...

Can maths help you win at roulette?

By Graham Kendall

Albert Einstein supposedly once said: No one can win at roulette unless he steals money from the table while the croupier isnt looking. Although I wouldnt normally question Einstein, this statement isnt true. In fact,...

French election 2017: everything you need to know about François Fillon

By Paul Smith

The arrival of François Fillon as the right-wing Republican candidate in Frances 2017 election (lets not pretend it was between centre and right there were no centre candidates for the nomination), may have come as...

The absurdity of natural history – or, why humans are 'fish'

By Jack Ashby

The human desire to classify is perhaps at its strongest when it comes to natural history. From our childhood years we are taught to put the animals we encounter in museums, living rooms and the natural environment into...

The lack of justice for journalists' sources is a catastrophe for democracy

By Tim Crook

Ten long years ago, Robert Norman was getting on with his demanding job as a prison officer at the high security Belmarsh Prison in London. Then in 2006 he became an undercover whistle-blower, revealing hidden details of...

Will a UK-style lottery system really take Australia back to its Olympic glory days?

By Lisa Gowthorp

Australia recorded its lowest medal tally in 24 years at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. This prompted calls to examine the current funding model and seek alternative revenue streams. Reports suggest Australian...

video Scorsese's Silence and the Catholic connection to the atomic bomb

By Gwyn McClelland

Today, Martin Scorseses Silence will have its premiere at the Vatican, where it will be screened to hundreds of Roman Catholic priests. The famed directors first foray into East Asia links to familiar themes of Catholic...

Domestic violence also has an economic penalty – we need to tackle it

By Jane Bullen Et Al

While Australia has a national conversation on domestic violence, some of the harms of this violence remain in the shadows. The ways violence degrades womens financial status and access to economic resources are...

No politician can singlehandedly bring back coal – not even Donald Trump

By Peter Newman

On the night Donald Trump won the US election, one of the many jubilant supporters featured in the media coverage was 67-year-old Doug Ratliff of Richlands, Virginia. An owner of struggling shopping malls in a region hit...

Why coal-fired power stations need to shut on health grounds

By David Shearman

The Senate inquirys report into the planned closure of coal-fired power stations will no doubt shed light on the compelling health reasons to close them. Coal-fired stations are a health hazard to their local...

A licence to print: how real is the risk posed by 3D printed guns?

By Thomas Birtchnell

3D printed guns are back in the news after Queensland Police reported last week that they had discovered a 3D printer in a raid on what appeared to be a large-scale weapons production facility as a part of Operation Oscar...

Why literature matters in debate about race and immigrants

By Rajini Srikanth

The people who voted for Donald Trump did so for a variety of reasons, but chief among them was the sense of their having been economically abandoned for several decades. Trump has promised to restore their economic...

Mexicans are migrating, just not across the US border

By Jeffrey H. Cohen Et Al

Mexican migration to the U.S. is in decline. The Pew Hispanic Research Center has found that since 2009, more than one million native-born Mexicans living in the U.S. returned to Mexico. But many other Mexicans never...

What China's 'export machine' can teach Trump about globalization

By Penelope B. Prime

Chinese goods seem to be everywhere these days. Consider this: At the Olympics in Rio this summer, Chinese companies supplied the mascot dolls, much of the sports equipment, the security surveillance system and the...

Misinformation on social media: Can technology save us?

By Filippo Menczer

If you get your news from social media, as most Americans do, you are exposed to a daily dose of hoaxes, rumors, conspiracy theories and misleading news. When its all mixed in with reliable information from honest sources,...

Backpacker tax deal finally – at One Nation's 15% rate

By Michelle Grattan

The government has made another retreat on its backpacker tax, dropping its proposed rate from 19% to 15% in a deal that will get through the Senate crossbench. The backdown comes a day after Finance Minister Mathias...

Australia is discriminating against investors and we're the poorer for it

By Jason Zein

Many Australians dream of starting their own businesses. But they face restrictions on where they can access startup capital. In Australia you must be certified as a sophisticated investor to invest in risky, early stage...

New laws are not necessarily the answer to counter the real threat pornography poses

By Terry Goldsworthy

Australia has a problem with pornography. The Senate reported recently on the harm online pornography inflicts on young people. Additionally, as part of its response to domestic violence, the Turnbull government...

Why adult children stay at home: looking beyond the myths of kidults, kippers and gestaters

By Hazel Easthope

Weve all seen it in the movies: overgrown kidults living at home while their parents pick up their dirty laundry, cook their meals and vacuum around their unmade bed. This narrow portrayal of what modern-day...

Why music is not lost

By Tracy Redhead Et Al

When radio became popular in the 1920s, many believed this was the end for recording artists and live music. Suddenly, music was being played with no compensation or income streams available. Record companies worried that...

More Australians are behind on their housing loans, how worried should we be?

By Harry Scheule

The number of Australians who are 30 days behind in their mortgage payments is at the highest level in three years, according to ratings agency Moodys. It projects this will keep rising. The question is, how worried...

China's plan to increase coal power by 20% is not the climate disaster it seems

By Alex Lo Et Al

China recently announced a 20% increase in coal power capacity by 2020. Does the new target contradict its pledge to peak carbon emissions well before 2030 under the Paris Agreement? China ratified the Paris Agreement...

New model for school funding that won't break the budget

By Kate Griffiths Et Al

Funding schools according to the needs of their students is something of a Holy Grail in Australia: something that we want very much but that has been very hard to achieve. Every school has a target rate of funding for...

South Africa has a new energy plan. But will it break the bank?

By Stephen Labson

The release of South Africas long awaited update to the Integrated Resource Plan is certain to inspire renewed debate about the countrys energy future. Once public consultation has taken place the plan will drive policy...

A tiny island at the centre of the world: how Fidel Castro changed Cuba

By Mervyn Bain

Late on November 25 2016, it was announced that one of the last remaining iconic political figures of the 20th century, Fidel Castro Ruz, had died. Castro had played a less prominent role in the Cuban political system...

Fidel Castro: Cuban conundrum fought for freedom but entrenched state power

By William Rowlandson

As a historical figure, Fidel Castro presents some juicy conundrums: justice and injustice, revolution and state power, citizens rights and state authority, artistic freedom and restriction, high literacy rates and...

Farewell Fidel

By Mark Beeson

Twentieth century political icons dont get much bigger than Fidel Castro. His death will reignite many important and still unresolved debates about his particular place in history, and about the revolutionary ideas he...

Tony Blair is back – but is there space for him?

By Richard Carr

Tony Blair is back. He started to pop up during the Brexit debate and has now revealed that he plans to set up a centrist think tank and to make more direct interventions. It seems Labours most successful prime minister...

Why tourists thirst for authenticity – and how they can find it

By Hanqun Hanqun Et Al

It has been a bumper year for tourists for the small village of Kidlington in Oxfordshire, England. Those on national, international and social media were left scratching their heads, when an unexpected flood of Chinese...

video These bizarre creatures defy what we think we know about plants and animals

By Jordi Paps

You might have played the game called animal, vegetable, mineral. One player thinks of an object or organism and the other players ask questions to try to guess what it is starting with this simple classification. But...

Eurozone PPI beats expectations in October, monthly pace of rise fastest in 4 years

15:58 PM| Commentary

Data released by Eurostat on Friday showed that Euro zone producer prices rose by their highest amount in more than four years in October as energy prices increased during the month. Prices at factory gates in the 19...

Oil in Global Economy Series

OPEC deal unlikely to boost oil prices in 2017 - Fitch

14:54 PM| Commentary

Ratings agency Fitch cheered the OPEC deal but at the same time warned that it may not cause a major lift to oil prices. The agency said that prices are unlikely to move much higher than they are now, expecting them to...

U.S. Government bonds rise modestly ahead of non-farm payroll data

12:28 PM| Commentary

The U.S. Treasuries were pushed modestly higher as markets look ahead to the November employment report on Friday, which is expected to reveal a +180k increase in non-farm payrolls. The yield on the benchmark 10-year...

ECB likely to maintain monthly QE purchases worth EUR80 billion in next week’s policy meeting

11:09 AM| Commentary Central Banks

The European Central Bank is expected to extend its QE purchases by six months to September 2017 and maintain the EUR80 billion monthly purchases in its monetary policy meeting scheduled next week. Lately there has been a...

Fed’s 2017 policies likely to be governed by developments in labor market

09:25 AM| Commentary Economy

The upcoming interest rate policy of the Federal Reserve in 2017 is likely to be governed by the labor market data due to be released by the end of today. Looking into 2017, the FOMC is turning more dovish on paper, which...

Fundamental Evaluation Series: Yield spread vs. EUR/USD

08:55 AM| Commentary

The chart above shows, how the relationship between EUR/USD and 2-year yield divergence has unfolded since 2012. It is evident that these short rates have been akey influencing factor for the pair as policy divergence...

Global economy shows positive signs of development while entering 2017

06:33 AM| Commentary

In 2015 and most of this year, the global economy was on a weak and diverging path. The U.S. faced challenges from the declining oil price, whereas Europe has been caught in the mud due to political uncertainty and EM...

German bunds narrowly mixed in subdue trade, next week’s ECB policy decision in focus

09:49 AM| Commentary

The German bunds traded narrowly mixed Friday, succumbing to thin trading activity during a relatively quiet session that witnessed data of little significance. Also, the market now looks ahead to the ECB monetary policy...

Indian bonds sag on profit booking; next week’s RBI bi-monthly monetary policy in focus

09:16 AM| Commentary

The Indian government bonds slumped Friday as investors cashed in profits after a long rally following hopes of a rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in its December 7 monetary policy meeting. The yield on the...

Manufacturing PMIs for CEE nations trend weaker in November

08:47 AM| Commentary

The PMI index for CEE nations trended slightly weaker in November. The figures published on Thursday continued to stay stable but not particularly upbeat compared with tendencies of these PMIs in the first half of 2016,...

Recent consumption data seems favorable for Indonesian inflation outlook

06:22 AM| Commentary Economy

Recent consumption data still looks favorable for the Indonesian inflation outlook ahead. The recent uptick in crude oil price is worth monitoring, especially given the plan for an upward revision in domestic electricity...

US Non-Farm-Payroll report likely to be a non-event

16:44 PM| Commentary Economy

Upbeat data in second half of 2016 coupled with limited financial market volatility in the wake of the November 8th elections have increased the odds that the Federal Reserve will hike the fed funds target range by 25...

Top Stories

Despite the hype, batteries aren't the cheapest way to store energy on the grid

By Roger Dargaville - 19:40 PM| Technology

Storage is the word of the moment in the energy industry. Since Tesla unveiled its Powerwall, politicians, commentators and industry have hyped storage and particularly batteries as the solution for getting more...

Africa Is Building Solar Farm So Big It Could Power Europe

18:50 PM| Technology

Generating enough power to justify the large sums of money being funneled into it has always been the biggest challenge for green energy sources. However, the industry is fast turning things around, coming up with better...

YouTube’s Live Stream Feature Now Comes With 4K Resolution

18:50 PM| Technology

YouTube has been featuring 4K videos for a while now, but its live stream service has been stuck in a pre-4K resolution era. Now, this is about to change since the popular video hosting site is providing its content...

Fitbit Set To Acquire Pebble For $40M

18:49 PM| Science

Fitbit has been soaring in popularity since its inception while Pebble has been struggling to keep up with the market. This has made it easier for the more successful fitness wearable maker to absorb the other one for a...

Two New Ways To Make Solar Cells More Efficient

18:47 PM| Technology

The efficiency of conversion by current, synthetic solar cells is one of the biggest weaknesses of solar power that opponents of green energy bring up. Right now, 20 percent conversion is the best that engineers have been...

1M Devices Infected With Malware That Exploits Android Vulnerability

18:41 PM| Technology

Security firm Check Point recently released data concerning a new malware infection campaign that has so far infected over 1 million Android devices. Devices become infected once they download apps that already carry the...

Self-Driving Company Gives Away Technology, DIY Autonomous Concept Just Got Larger

18:35 PM| Technology

George Hotz, the 27-year old tech genius who became famous for being the first to jailbreak the iPhone and the PlayStation 3, announced last month that he was shutting down his efforts at creating a DIY self-driving...

Neuroscience hasn't been weaponized – it's been a tool of war from the start

By Alison Howell - 02:52 AM| Insights & Views Science

What could once only be imagined in science fiction is now increasingly coming to fruition: Drones can be flown by human brains thoughts. Pharmaceuticals can help soldiers forget traumatic experiences or produce feelings...

Study Says ‘Don’t Go To Sleep Angry’ Is On Point

10:00 AM| Health

Ever heard of the phrase, Dont go to sleep angry? For those who have been alive during the past century or so, chances are high that this is the case. If so, a recent study shows that there is a good reason why this advice...

Earth’s Destruction By Mankind Starkly Clear Through Google Earth Timelapse

10:11 AM| Technology Nature

Its long been known that human activity and progress has come at the cost of environmental damage, which have led to some of the most catastrophic results in recent history. With super typhoons, extreme droughts,...

Facebook Aggressively Pushes Gaming Agenda With Messenger Games

10:01 AM| Technology

Last month, Facebook launched Gameroom, which is the social media equivalent of Valves Steam platform. It was the start of the social networks push into gaming territory, where it once held a significant chunk thanks to...

India's golden quest to tackle 'black money' and the lessons from a century ago

By Fergal O'Connor - 17:19 PM| Insights & Views Law Economy

The Indian government has been trying to reduce its citizens demand for imported gold through a number of means over the last few years. This is part of a wider crack down on currency used in the black market, that...

Econotimes Series

Economy

Chart of the Day: China bleeds treasuries

This chart from bond vigilantes shows, how the treasury holdings by Peoples Bank of China has declined to a four-year low amid increasing yields in the United States. Given the increasing interest rates in China,...

UK Construction PMI continues expansion in Nov, raises optimism for near-term outlook

The UK construction sector expanded further in November to hit an 8-month high. Business activity and new orders increased at the fastest pace since March and there was a sharp deterioration in supplier performance as...

Czech Q3 GDP rises by 0.2 pct q/q, supported by household consumption

Czech economy growth continued to grow in Q3 2016 on rapidly growing household consumption supported by investment growth which was the main growth factors. Growth in Q3 was still slower pace than in the previous...

Poland's economic downturn to continue through 2017

Polands real economy disappoints significantly in 2016 and the downturn is likely to continue through 2017. Slump in private investment and weaker-than-expected household consumption are seen to be the main drivers behind...

Denmark likely to witness substantial current account surpluses in near term, says Danske Bank

Denmark has been running significant current account surpluses over the past few years. However, the surplus has trended down recently and we expect it to edge down a bit further in the years to 2020. While the Danish...

Politics

Impeding Trump Inauguration Prompts Internet Archivists To Seek Asylum in Canada

The internet is a pretty big place and contains a lot of information. Since it would be difficult to find all this information on ones own, archivists gather all existing data to organize them and make searching for...

US Election Series: Wisconsin denies Jill Stein’s request for hand count

Wisconsin Elections Commission Chairman, Mark Thomsen, a Democrat, announced earlier that the committee would follow through with Steins recount request but denied a request that the recount be conducted by hand. According...

François Fillon wins French Republican primary

Over the weekend, the former Prime Minister under President Nicolas Sarkozy, François Fillon has won the right-wing Republican primary on Sunday. Last week, in the first primary, Mr. Fillon unexpectedly best both...

US Election Series: How much votes Clinton needs to win to turn the outcome?

It is now official that Hillary Clintons campaign will support the recount effort in key battleground states. On Saturday, in a post on Medium, Marc Elias, the Clinton teams general counsel, said the campaign would take...

US Election Series: Clinton backs Stein’s recount, America closer to chaos

Over the weekend, Hillary Clintons campaign said that they would join Green Party candidate Jill Steins petition to recount the votes in Wisconsin and would also join recount process in two other key battleground states;...

Science

Major Cancer Organizations Form Alliance To Create Cancer Vaccine

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in terms of medical issues in the world, affecting over 14 million patients on earth. The number of cancer patients is expected to grow by 2030, reaching over 21.7 million in...

Virus-Like Cellular Delivery Method Created, Could Someday Be Used To Administer Drugs

Right now, drug delivery to treat a myriad of illnesses, vaccinate, or encourage therapeutic results is still crude. Health workers use syringes or tubes to inject medication directly into the body if oral or anal...

Killing Bears Is The Only Way To Save Them, Study Suggests

Black Bears have existed in some parts of New Jersey for centuries, and it has always been their fate to meet their end in the hands of human hunters. As appalling as this situation might be for those who are committed to...

New Stroke Drug Could Help Prevent Brain Damage And Repair Cells

Having a stroke inflicts several problems on the human body that, if left untreated, could significantly impair normal functions. One of the worst effects of a stroke includes damage to brain cells, which can lead to...

San Francisco Tower Is Sinking, Satellite Analysis Proves It

Thanks to towering structures built all over cities, all across the world, there is a very real threat of injuries or deaths caused by buildings with structural problems. As such, the discovery that the Millennium Tower...

Technology

Artificial Intelligence Trained To Recognize Different Sounds By Binge Watching

Although several examples of artificial intelligence have gotten extremely adept at recognizing speech and voice patterns such as Siri and Cortana, recognizing other sounds has been a significant hurdle for machines....

Countries Fight Over Tesla Gigafactory 2, Hedge Fund Manager Mocks Elon Musk

The Gigafactory by Tesla Motors located deep in the Nevada desert is not even finished yet, but countries are already clamoring for the next one to be built in their own countries. While nations seem to believe that Tesla...

Google AI Responds To Questions Instead Of Simply Showing Search Results

Google has just developed an artificial intelligence that answers the questions of users directly instead of providing them with links to certain websites or pages that contain the information. For example, asking Google...

Google AI Can Scan Retina To Look For Symptoms Of Impending Blindness

It would seem that the time when machines surpass the ability of humans to do intricate work is almost here. One of Googles Artificial Intelligence projects is apparently capable of diagnosing the retina of patients to see...

Renewable Waste Turned To Natural Gas By Scientists, Gas Storage Falling

Inefficiency is something that renewable energy struggles with even with current technology, but thanks to a new discovery by scientists, its possible to create natural gas from the waste of wind or solar power. This is a...
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December 1 10:00 UTC Released

ITGDP Final QQ

Actual

0.3 %

Forecast

0.3 %

Previous

0.3 %

December 1 10:00 UTC Released

EZUnemployment Rate

Actual

9.8 %

Forecast

10.0 %

Previous

10.0 %

December 4 21:00 UTC 12711271m

KRFX Reserves*

Actual

Forecast

Previous

375.17 bln $

December 4 22:30 UTC 13611361m

AUAIG Services Index

Actual

Forecast

Previous

50.5

December 5 00:00 UTC 14511451m

RUMarkit Services PMI

Actual

Forecast

Previous

52.7

December 5 00:30 UTC 14811481m

AUCompany Profits Pre-Tax*

Actual

Forecast

Previous

18.7 %

December 5 00:30 UTC 14811481m

AUBusiness Inventories*

Actual

Forecast

Previous

0.3 %

December 5 00:30 UTC 14811481m

AUANZ Internet Job Ads

Actual

Forecast

Previous

1.0 %

December 5 00:30 UTC 14811481m

AUGross Company Profits*

Actual

Forecast

Previous

6.9 %

December 5 01:45 UTC 15561556m

CNCaixin Services PMI

Actual

Forecast

Previous

52.4 %

Close

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