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Finance

Bitcoin's price is tearing upwards, with each bitcoin currently worth $US2,128 (£1,638) — a little shy of all-time-high of $US2,185 (£1,682), earlier this morning.

Just a year ago, it was trading at just $US443 (£341), after deflating from what was then seen as the giddy highs of around $US1,100 (£847) in late 2013. It has since embarked on an epic bull run.

The digital currency has come a long way since 2010, when the purchase of the two Papa Johns pizzas by Laszlo Hanyecz from another bitcoin enthusiast marked what is believed to be the first “real-world” bitcoin transaction.

Today, those 10,000 bitcoins are worth around $US20,500,000 (£15,800,000). businessinsider.com.au
Budgeting roughly $200 million a year on travel costs, the World Health Organization spends more money on traveling than battling the world’s biggest health crises.

AP reports reveal agency director-general Dr. Margaret Chan racked up $370,000 worth of annual travel expenses, in addition to recent charges of $1,008 for a one-night hotel stay in Guinea.

Last year, WHO spend around $71 million on AIDS and hepatitis prevention, $61 million on malaria, $59 million on tuberculosis, and $450 million on polio. However, the agency is asking taxpayers for another handout. thegoldwater.com
Announcing the colossal suite of donations alongside Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten, mining and business billionaire Andrew "Twiggy" Forrest is giving away a huge chunk of personal wealth.

The largest philanthropic donation by a living person in Australian history, the funds are expected to dwarf any past pledges by high-net-worth Australians.

The money will be dedicated to a variety of social and scientific causes including Indigenous disadvantage, cultural and arts facilities, and an ambitious plan to gain the upper hand over cancer research. smh.com.au
Canada's silver Superman coins have been like kryptonite to the bottom line of the Royal Canadian Mint.

In 2011, the mint began selling a series of silver collectible coins, with a face value of $20, at a time when the price of silver was soaring.

The cost to buy one was also just $20, tax free.

Superman, Bugs Bunny, the starship Enterprise and other catchy images on the coins attracted hundreds of thousands of coin collectors and investors, and fattened revenues at the Crown corporation.

But the price of silver has fallen dramatically in the five years since, and Canadians are returning the coins by the truckload, protected from the fall in silver prices by that fixed $20 face value which the mint must pay back on request. cbc.ca
The Queensland Labor government is providing Indian mining conglomerate Adani with hundreds of millions of dollars in financial relief to help fund the Carmichael coal mine into production.

Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt did not deny a $320 million "royalties holiday" was on the table to progress the $21 billion project, but insisted "no decision has been made."

In a statement, Adani said Queensland governments had previously "used royalty agreements to enable such projects" and the company "welcomes this approach." brisbanetimes.com.au
Gas prices are expected to drop in time for the Victoria Day long weekend across most of the country thanks to higher supply and lower demand, according to some gas experts.

Dan McTeague, a senior petroleum analyst for Gasbuddy.com, told CTVNews.ca on Friday morning that individual gas stations may choose to drop their 10 cent operating margins to stay competitive, which would mean drivers could be treated to lower prices at the pumps from Saturday to Monday.

He also advised drivers to wait until Friday evening or the weekend to fill up if they can because that’s when the prices are expected to fall at many gas stations.

McTeague said gas prices should remain stable for the summer months except for an expected short-term jump when OPEC agrees to continue cutting oil production. ctvnews.ca
He pitched himself to Conservatives as an accomplished businessman who could clean up Canada's finances, but Kevin O'Leary has left the Conservative leadership race with unpaid bills and a campaign that one senior official says is more than $200,000 in debt.

One of those still waiting for a paycheque is Marc Nadeau, a self-employed translator and father of four who said O'Leary owes him approximately $3,600.

"For Kevin O'Leary that amount of money certainly is not very significant but for me it's the rent, it's the electricity bill. It's daily life for me and my family," Nadeau told CBC News.

He said he was told several times that he would receive his cheque but it still hasn't come.  cbc.ca
Macquarie Bank will donate $2 million to charity and open up its foreign exchange arm to scrutiny after the corporate watchdog uncovered a series of breaches by its traders. 

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) reached a deal with Macquarie to enter an enforceable undertaking with the bank over misconduct on its foreign exchange desk between Jan. 2008 and June 2013. 

According to ASIC, traders disclosed confidential details of client orders to third parties and revealed material information about Macquarie's trading activity in relation to large Australian-dollar trades. 

Traders were also found "triggering" prices in order to meet client orders, trading "in a manner that may have been intended to cause the trigger price to trade when it might not have traded at that time", ASIC said. theage.com.au
A man who won a £101m Euromillions jackpot does not have to "cough up" financial support for his son "whenever asked", a court has ruled.

Former factory worker Dave Dawes, 53, from Wisbech in Cambridgeshire, and his wife Angela, 49, won the money in 2011.

Central London County Court heard Mr Dawes' son Michael, 32, was given £1.6m, but funds stopped after a row.

He was seeking a ruling that his father and stepmother must financially support him for the rest of their lives.

Judge Nigel Gerald said Michael "was provided with the funds to have a comfortable life" but instead behaved like a "profligate son" who expected his father to bail him out. bbc.com