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Australia news live update: Covid reaches two-year mark in Australia, free RATs pledge falls short


Support for NSW business within a week


The benchmark ASX200 is set to fall 1.7% this morning, according to futures data, following further losses on overseas markets overnight.

In the US, the S&P500 fell 0.72% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq index dropped 0.43%, while London’s FTSE100 shed a whopping 2.63%.

If it plays out as futures markets predict, today’s fall will extend a run of losses that’s already seen the ASX200 shed 3.75% over the past week as coronavirus disruption and fretting over rising inflation roils global markets.

US markets have shed about 5% over the past week.

There are also signs that the bubble in crypto assets, which are purely speculative and have no underlying use, may be starting to burst, with the price of Bitcoin down 10% in a week.

To bring you up to speed on goings on in the market and economy here’s my colleague Peter Hannam:


Australia claims Aboriginal flag rights

Scott Morrison enters a federal election year with his approval languishing at levels not seen since March 2020, and the Coalition’s handling of the Omicron wave has prompted some voters to signal they are now less likely to back the government on polling day.

The first Guardian Essential poll of 2022 confirms the prime minister’s approval rating (46%) hasn’t budged since last December, and disapproval of Morrison is up two points to 46%.

The Morrison government had hoped to recover standing with voters over the summer break, but the desired political fillip hasn’t eventuated. The prime minister needs to recover lost ground – voter approval of Morrison dived 19 points during the controversies and missteps of 2020.

You can read the full report below:

‘Majority of the population is reviewing their first-aid tool kit,’ Ukraine representative says



Australians told to leave Ukraine now


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