Dawn chorus: Bitcoin crackdown

Bitcoin slumps as Sichuan bans mining too; Bondi Junction delta cluster grows to 9; Suggestion Govt may have to intervene to buy or lease ships as export crisis looms; Chinese 'Spycatcher' defects


TLDR & TLDL: Bitcoin’s price slumped over the weekend after China’s Sichuan provincial government joined other local governments in banning and shutting down miners. (Reuters) Elsewhere in China news, a senior official known as China’s ‘Spycatcher’, is reported by Spytalk to have defected to America with information about the Wuhan laboratory some accuse of being the source of Covid-19.

Here, a shipping expert suggested yesterday the Government may need to get involved to buy or lease ships to help get New Zealand’s exports to markets as shipping lines drop New Zealand off their routes and take back containers to chase higher returns in a desperately stretched shipping industry. (Stuff)

“I would traditionally be the last person to suggest state intervention and setting up a state shipping line or anything like that, but what are some cargo owners doing? Well some of them are just going out and renting vessels.” Sea Intelligence CEO Alan Murphy.

In Australia, the national cabinet will hold a crisis meeting today to deal with a shortage of Pfizer vaccine supply and a growing cluster of delta variant cases around the Bondi Junction shopping mall in Sydney. Three more cases were found yesterday, taking the total to nine. Our Ministry of Health tweeted last night that anyone in New Zealand who was at Westfield Bondi Junction last weekend should be tested immediately. New Zealand’s travel bubble with New South Wales remains open, while the bubble with Victoria is still paused.

In politics here, Winston Peters made his first big speech since the election, declaring New Zealand First would return to Parliament, although a poll broadcast last night on Newshub showed 70% of voters didn’t want him back, including 37% of NZ First supporters.

Coming up this week: PM Jacinda Ardern holds a post-cabinet news conference this afternoon. Parliament resumes on Tuesday for a three-week sitting session. Wellington Council meets on Thursday to finalise its watered-down plan for more medium density housing. The Bank of England decides on its interest rates on Friday morning our time, with all eyes on what it does about rising inflation.

I’ll be working on a podcast this week for the Spinoff on how the housing market might cope with DTIs, and whether its slowing down much at all after the March 23 tax deductibility shock.

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