If you’re anywhere in Australia on Tuesday 3rd November then you will know what is happening. It’s the day a Nation stops to listen to a horse race; The Melbourne Cup. |
Recognised as one of the world’s greatest handicap races, it attracts horses from all over the world competing for glory and a prize purse of over $3 million. The race has been held annually since 1861 and only 5 horses have ever won the race more than once. The last was by Makybe Diva who became the first and only horse to have won 3 Melbourne Cups.
The race is held at Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne and attracts a crowd of over 100,000 people. It doesn’t matter where you are in Australia - factories, workshops, offices will all stop to listen or watch. It’s a day when the nation becomes a land of punters, spending over $140 million on the great race. It’s a day when a race stops a nation.
The most successful Melbourne Cup Trainer is Bart Cummings who has won a record 12 Melbourne Cups. Affectionately know as the ‘Cups King’ he is recognised as one of Australia’s greatest horse trainers.
The legendary Phar Lap also features in the history of the Melbourne Cup having won the race in 1930. One of the greatest and biggest races horses to ever race in Australia. He stood about 17 hands high. He won 37 races out of 51 starts but died mysteriously at the age of 5 at a ranch in California in 1932.
A less significant, but perhaps more important event is also happening on Tuesday 3rd November, just prior to the running of the Melbourne Cup. It’s the day when the Reserve Bank announces the outcome of their meeting and decision on interest rates. The expectation is for interest rates to rise for a second consecutive month as signs of an economic recovery continue and fears grow that inflation will become a problem.
History will show that Australia suffered less from the economic meltdown of the global financial crisis. Unlike most other nations, Australia was blessed with a budget surplus leading into the crisis and the impact has been softened by its ability to export natural resources to its Asian neighbours.
The decision to raise interest rates will affect millions of Australians who will be forced into finding extra to meet the monthly mortgage repayments. It’s the sort of news that could stop a nation, but I doubt whether too many people will be listening.
Rob Bourne has been involved in the financial services industry for over 35 years. As a practising financial adviser he focuses on the need for practical and down to earth financial education. The aim is to educate people through financial education so they can take control of their own financial future. Visit Rob’s website here for more information on business opportunities and investing.
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