Breakfast Edition: 17 December 2015

Breakfast Edition: 17 December 2015

WATCH & LISTEN: Here's a recap of this morning's top news stories.


ECONOMIC NEWS: The Federal Reserve announced on Wednesday its first interest rate increase in more than nine years in a landmark move signalling the US has finally moved beyond the 2008 crisis. The Fed raised the benchmark federal funds rate, locked near zero since the Great Recession, by a quarter point to 0.25-0.50 percent, saying the economy is growing at a moderate pace and should accelerate next year. The move was widely expected, but nevertheless marked the end of an era in which the Fed pumped trillions of cheap dollars into the US economy to fuel what turned out to be a very long recovery. Moody's Investors Service on Wednesday said it was changing the outlook on its Baa2 local and foreign currency credit rating for South Africa from stable to negative. Moody's cited persistently weak growth and the growing risk of fiscal slippages as well as political pressures when it announced the change. The rand is stable against the dollar and Standard Bank economist, Chris Hart is upbeat about the country's chances, saying the Moody's warning gives the country a year's breathing space.  


PETROL PRICE EXPECTED TO DROP: Amid the rand weakness and thanks to the low oil price, the Automobile Associations' Layton Beard gives their prediction for January fuel prices. 


PLANE CRASH PLETTENBURG BAY: It's believed that overcast weather conditions contributed to yesterday's light plane crash in the Palmietvlei Mountain near Plettenburg Bay in which two women were killed. The pilot of the Cessna survived. The Civil Aviation Authority is investigating. The National Sea Rescue Institute's Craig Lambinon says they are also on scene to assist.

THOUSANDS MARCHED AGAINST PRESIDENT ZUMA: It's estimated that some six thousand South Africans joined three marches yesterday calling for President Jacob Zuma's removal as well as an end to corruption. Unite Against Corruption's Oya-Hazel Gumede was at the march at the Nelson Mandela Bridge in Johannesburg.

ZUMA PRAISES STUDENTS ON RECONCILIATION DAY: In his Reconciliation Day speech in Port Elizabeth - President   Zuma congratulated students on their "FeesMustFall" campaign earlier this year. He again reiterated that plans are being put in place to ensure a zero university fee increment for next year. 

CHARLES & CAMILLA'S CHRISTMAS CARD CUDDLE: A photo showing the Prince of the Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall hugging has been chosen as their Christmas card this year. Charles and Camilla chose the photo that was taken during their summer holiday in Scotland.

Charles & Camilla

WHATS-APP BLOCKED IN BRAZIL: The popular mobile messaging application Whatsapp will be blocked in Brazil for 48 hours from Thursday after a court ruling, the state news agency reported. A court in Sao Bernardo do Campo ordered telephone network operators to block Whatsapp as punishment for the company's alleged refusal to cooperate with a separate lawsuit, Agencia Brasil said on its website late Wednesday. 

GOOGLE'S TOP 10 SEARCHES: Google has released its 15th annual Zeitgeist lists revisiting the year's top searches around the world. Xenophobia took up the number three spot on the South African list, with American artist, August Alsina in second place. And the most searched word for 2015? Loadshedding.

Top 10 - overall searches in SA:

1 - Loadshedding

2 - August Alsina

3 - Xenophobia

4 - Cricket World Cup

5 - Lamar Odom

6 - Caitlyn Jenner

7 - Adele Hello

8 - Flabba

9 - BMW i8

10 - Jeremy Clarkson

Top 10 - local searches in SA:

1 - Flabba

2 - Simba Mhere

3 - Cassper Nyovest

4 - Pastor Zondo

5 - Collins Chabane

6 - Pulane Lenkoe

7 - Senzo Meyiwa

8 - Itumeleng Khune

9 - Saba Mbixane

10 - Jackie Selebi

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