Thursday's news in under 5 minutes.

We’ve rounded up all the latest stories from Australia and around the world – so you don’t have to go searching.

1. Sydney tornado causes $50m of damage leaving homes destroyed and trees uprooted.

The tornado that ripped through the Sydney suburb of Kurnell yesterday has caused up to $50 million worth of damage.

The tornado hit at 10.30am yesterday ripping the roof off a school and pulling trees from the ground. Forecaster Michael Logan said the wind speeds recorded were “up there” with the fastest ever registered in the Sydney area.

“We don’t get situations like that without it being a tornado,” he said.

“It is what’s called a super cell thunderstorm and they’re one of the most dangerous thunderstorms we get.”

One family had only sold their home for a record price on Wednesday – to find it destroyed by the tornado. Frank and Michelle Partlic who sold their Kurnell home for a suburb record of $1.15 million told The Daily Telegraph they were still hoping the sale would go through.

Three people suffered injuries caused by shattered glass with the winds just 27km/h slower than the 240km/h gusts that flattened Darwin during Cyclone Tracy in 1974 reports The Daily Telegraph.

2. US Federal Reserve raises interest rates by 0.25% first time in a decade.

In a move with potential global repercussions the US Federal reserve has raised interest rates for the first time in nine years. The historic decision officially marks the end of the global financial crisis.

The move takes the range of rates banks offer to lend to each other overnight – the Federal Funds rate – to between 0.25% and 0.5%.

The US central bank also raised its projection for economic growth next year slightly, from 2.3% to 2.4%.


Commonwealth Bank of Australia senior economist Peter Dragicevich said ahead of the decision that it was “monumental.”

3. Morcombes say they will march for Allison Baden-Clay.

Bruce and Denise Morcombe have said they will march in tomorrow’s rally against the downgrading of Gerard Baden-Clay’s murder conviction.

“In a democratic society we have the right for peaceful protest and that’s exactly what this is,” Bruce Morecombe told The Courier Mail. 

“The communities of southeast Queensland and greater Australia are not happy with the decision made last week. If the laws need changing, that’s what we’d like to happen, so this can’t happen again.

“We have walked the same corridors of the Supreme Court in Queensland as Allison’s parents.

4. Perth man jailed for fatal Bali crash.

A Perth man has been sentenced to two months and 15 days’ jail over a Bali motorcycle crash that claimed a local man’s life.

But Joshua Terelinck should be free to return home to Australia next week after time already served.

Terelinck returned to Bali to face the dangerous driving charges, which carried a maximum penalty of six years’ jail, saying he felt it was the right thing to do.

5. Adoption rates hit new low.

The latest Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report shows just 292 children were adopted in Australia last financial year, marking a 74 per cent decline since 1991.

The ABC reports that at the same time there are 43,009 children in foster care.

Social Services Minister Christian Porter has called on state child protection agencies to shift their attitudes towards adoption.


“The problem is not an unwillingness of great Australian families to adopt children who are in need of adoption, the problem appears to be occurring at the point where we’re making the decision as to whether or not a particular child in a particular set of circumstances should be able to be adopted,” he said.

Mr Porter said the balance between keeping a family together and looking out for the best interests of the child was not right.

“I don’t see that that balance is perfect at the moment and I think there probably is, in a variety of instances, an over-emphasis placed on the notion that family reunification should occur at all or great cost, and there are circumstances where that just can’t be rationally achieved.”

6. Australians searched for Netflix and how to make a paper plane in 2015.

Cecil the Lion.

Google have released their annual breakdown ranking the inquiries that triggered the biggest spikes in traffic on Google’s search engine.

More than half of this year’s top trending searches were sports-related, with Aussies also following the personal stories of Ronda Rousey and Jarryd Hayne.

As well as the tragic events in Paris, the Nepal earthquake, and Cyclone Marcia, we also searched for Hepatitis A as a berries recall made headlines.

Month by month we searched for topic like the dress back in February and Cecil the Lion in August.

Trending Searches

1. Netflix

2. Rugby World Cup

3. Lamar Odom

4. Ronda Rousey

5. Asian Cup

6. Jarryd Hayne

7. Jurassic World

8. Paris

9. Cricket World Cup

10. Agario

How to… (Most Searched)

1. Tie A Tie

2. Make Pancakes

3. Screenshot On Mac

4. Make A Paper Plane

5. Write A Cover Letter

6. Draw

7. Get Rid Of Pimples

8. Poach An Egg

9. Lose Weight Fast

10. Make Money


7. Adelaide heatwave breaks December records.

A series of scorching hot days in Adelaide are forecast bringing top temperatures of 40C or higher for the next four days in a row.

Today the city is expected to hit 42C, Friday’s 41C and Saturday’s 42C.


Although similar four-day runs have been recorded in February, the current event would be the earliest in any summer since January 3-6, 1906.

Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Matt Collopy said that “four days greater than a record of 40C in Adelaide has never happened in December since records began in 1887”.

8. Japan’s supreme court upholds surname ruling.

Japan’s Supreme Court has upheld a law requiring spouses to use the same surname.

The law does not state which surname a couple must use but 96 per cent of married women take their husband’s name. One of the plaintiffs told media that the ruling was distressing.

“My tears wouldn’t stop overflowing when I heard the judgment,” said Kyoko Tsukamoto, an 80-year-old plaintiff who uses her maiden name but took her husband’s name to have children.

“Now I won’t be able to die as Kyoko Tsukamoto,”

In 2011, five plaintiffs filed suit against the law, which means that many working women have faced the hassles of juggling two names – their maiden name for professional use and their legal married name, required on official documents.

The New York Times reports that some couples chose not to register their marriages — opting instead to stay in common-law relationships with fewer legal protections — in order to keep separate surnames.


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