EVERY MORNING, TheJournal.ie brings you nine things you need to know before 9am…
1. #EUROZONE: The most critical phase in the history of the euro will continue today as Eurozone finance ministers meet in Brussels to discuss what they can do to reassure markets that they are taking action against the ongoing debt crisis. The meetings come as perceived ‘safe’ states see their costs of borrowing rise to dangerous levels.
2. #MISSING: The search for the the five sailors, who are still missing after their cargo boat capsized off the Welsh coast, has been called off by the British coastguard. Shore searches will continue but rescuers have given up hope of recovering the bodies of the other missing crewmen.
3. #BONDHOLDERS: It’s emerged that the IMF was fully supportive of the Irish government’s hopes to knock billions of the cost of our bailout by burning the senior bondholders of Irish banks – but that the European side vetoed the idea. Ajai Chopra told last night’s Prime Time that “sharing the burden with unsecured senior creditors of banks was an option that ought to be explored” – but that the EU put the skids on the idea.
4. #BUDGET 2012: The government has been handed a political boost ahead of next week’s tough budget, as an opinion poll showed that the public backed its policy of prioritising spending cuts over tax hikes. The Irish Daily Mail’s poll, in conjunction with the Frontline, showed a 2-1 margin favouring spending cuts.
5. #DUBLIN: Dublin City Council has signed off on a new Budget which will see its capital spending cut slashed by half for the next three years – but which also cuts rates on commercial premises. The new financial measures include a call-out charge for fire brigades, though most home insurance policies will cover this, and a proposal to privatise bin collections.
6. #HACKING: The Guardian newspaper today reports that the former Northern Ireland secretary Peter Hain may have had his computer, and those of other senior civil servants in Northern Ireland, hacked by private detectives working for News International. The disclosure comes as the Leveson Inquiry prepares to hear from high-profile journalists who either partook, or exposed, unethical behaviour within Britain’s media.
7. #RACISM: The British woman who gained worldwide attention after featuring in a video where she openly attacked immigrants on a tram – while cradling her young toddler in her lap – has been arrested. The 34-year-old has been arrested on suspicion of a racially-aggravated public order offence.
8. #THE GAFFER: The FAI has confirmed that Giovanni Trapattoni and his team have signed a new two-year deal to remain in charge of the Republic of Ireland national side for the World Cup 2014 qualification campaign. Telecoms magnate Denis O’Brien will continue to bankroll part of the salaries of Trapattoni and his assistant Marco Tardelli.
9. #PLAYBOY PUNTERS: A group of men are launching legal action against the management of the Playboy mansion in Los Angeles – claiming they were discriminated against on the basis of their sex. TMZ says the men paid $1,000 to get into a ‘Leather meets Lace’ party – but want a refund, saying the female attendees at the shindig weren’t asked to pay an entry fee.