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Saturday 2 December 2023 Dublin: 3°C

The 9 at 9 Nine things to know this morning…

EVERY MORNING, brings you the nine things you need to know as you start your day.

1. #UH OH The European Central Bank is expected to announce its second interest rate hike since April in an effort to keep inflation down. The bank is also expected to indicate that further rate increases are in the pipeline. Today’s hike is expected to be 0.25 per cent, bringing the main benchmark rate to 1.5 per cent. AIB and Bank of Ireland didn’t implement April’s rise for their variable rate mortgage holders, and it’s expected that they’ll put up their rates by more than 0.25 per cent to make up for it.

2. #NOTW The families of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan may have been targeted by a private investigator working for the News of the World. News International, which owns the paper, has said it will be in contact with the Ministry of Defence over the claims that families’ phones were hacked. The list of those believed to have been targeted now includes murdered teen Milly Dowler, families of victims of the 2005 London bombings and the parents of Madeline McCann and Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman.

3. #DÁIL The future of two Fine Gael TDs could be on the line after last night’s Dáil vote on the decision to downgrade Roscommon’s emergency department. Frank Feighan voted for the downgrade, while Denis Naughten voted against the Government’s proposal. It’s reported this morning that Naughten now looks certain to lose the party whip, while there are calls for Feighan to resign.

4. #TRAGIC A 39-year-old woman was swept out to sea in Tramore yesterday, in front of her young daughter. The pair were walking on the beach at around 8.30am when the woman was swept out. She was airlifted to Waterford Regional Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

5. #JOBSWATCH There are fears for 700 jobs at GlaxoSmithKline in Waterford with staff at the company gathering to learn their fate later today. Workers in Dungarvan have been called to a meeting at 3pm. An operations review of the facility has been going on in recent months.

6. #RELIGIOUS ORDERS Only seven of 200 schools worth more than €1 million have been offered as part of an abuse compensation fund by religious orders, reports the Irish Examiner, while not one of 46 schools worth more than €5 million have been offered. The education minister Ruairi Quinn has said that he’s disappointed by how much money religious congregations are willing to put forward for redress of institutional child abuse.

7. # SEIZED More than 6 million cigarettes were seized by customs officers in Co. Louth yesterday evening. Customs had tracked a container for two days as it arrived from Belgium into Dublin Port. Three men were arrested along with two vehicles and a trailer at a premises in Collon in Louth.

8. #HARRY POTTER The premiere of the final instalment of the Harry Potter franchise will take place in London this evening, and people are already queuing at the venue for a glimpse of its stars. The Telegraph has calculated that Daniel Radcliffe wore 160 pairs of glasses during the filming of just one instalment of the series, that author JK Rowling is now worth over £530 million, and that make up artists painted Harry Potter’s scar 5,800 times on Radcliffe’s head.

9. #OXEGEN Revellers heading to Oxegen today may have looked out the window with dismay this morning at the heavy-looking rain clouds.  Downpours in Co. Kildare overnight mean the ground at Punchestown is bound to be soggy underfoot. Campsites open at midday today for those hardy enough to brave four nights in a tent and there are campers already on their way there this morning to get the best spots. Here’s’s guide on how to get there and what not to bring.

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