The market finally succumbed to all the negativity today and fell back well and truly below 5100 on a combination of Asian worries and Syrian risks. With the ever increasing chance of the US and the UK using up some excess Tomahawk missiles on Damascus, it proved the excuse the punters were looking for to take some money off the table. The market was a little like me being hit by Mike Tyson. Got hit and stayed down.54 points at the death. No sign of any bargain hunting to speak of. One of the big winners from all the posturing and chest beating about Syria has been Gold .Unfortunately the gold stocks did nothing today with Newcrest Mining Limited (A$13.74, unch) going nowhere whilst fallers included Kingsgate Consolidated Limited (A$2.74, +1.9%),Evolution Mining Limited (A$0.93, -1.6%) and Regis Resources Limited (A$4.28, +0.9%). Stocks were strafed across the board with the big red blob of financials taking a direct hit with Westpac Banking Corporation (A$31.11, -1.6%), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (A$72.25, -1.7%), National Australia Bank Limited (A$32.32, -1.0%) and Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (A$29.64, -0.8%) all hurt. Insurance stocks also took a hit, maybe they insure al-Assad’s Chemical weapons plants?

Big resource land also copped a Tomahawk with BHP Billiton Limited (A$34.80, -2.2%), Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (A$4.22, -4.3%) and RIO Tinto Limited (A$58.16, -2.6%) damaged in the attack. Copper stocks were also targeted with Sandfire Resources NL (A$6.00, -3.1%),Sirius Resources NL (A$2.82, -6.6%),Bougainville Copper Limited (A$0.53, -10.2%) and Oz Minerals Limited (A$4.14, -1.4%) weaker. Building stocks were also reduced to rubble with Adelaide Brighton Limited (A$3.35, -3.5%) leading the way followed by James Hardie Industries PLC (A$9.62, -1.2%),Boral Limited (A$4.15, -1.0%),Fletcher Building Limited (A$7.63, -0.3%) and Brickworks Limited (A$11.95, -1.6%).Flight Centre Limited (A$47.42, -2.0%) came back to earth today after the bumper results yesterday but Wotif.com Holdings Limited (A$4.71, -6.4%) weren’t quite so well liked and gambling stocks failed to hit any jackpots as Crown Limited (A$14.39, -1.4%),TABCORP Holdings Limited (A$3.23, unch),Tatts Group Limited (A$3.22, -0.3%) and Aristocrat Leisure Limited (A$4.40, -2.0%) all came up lemons!

Few stocks out there looking like Heath Ledger in Batman today(big red grin) were AP Eagers Limited (A$4.65, +3.8%),#VRT#,AGL Energy Limited (A$15.08, +4.9%),Peet Limited (A$1.23, +0.8%),Ansell Limited (A$19.86, +2.7%) and Woolworths Limited (A$34.59, +2.0%) whilst looking like Ben Affleck (say it ain’t so ,one word “Gigli”) were Linc Energy Ltd (A$1.52, -6.7%),Sirius Resources NL (A$2.82, -6.6%),Arrium Limited (A$1.11, -7.5%),Wotif.com Holdings Limited (A$4.71, -6.4%) and Metcash Limited (A$3.25, -5.8%) plus Buru Energy Limited (A$1.665, -5.9%).

Volume was again not great but slightly better than the previous two sessions at over $4.4bn

Asian Markets were deeply troubled by these new escalations in the Middle East. In times of trouble, seems that punters want their money close to home and looks like (sub) merging markets have been the big loser as Tapering rumours swirl.
Stocks and Stories

In ‘da house’ stocks today were APN News & Media Limited (A$0.345, -1.4%) following our briefing with the new MD yesterday whilst REY Resources Limited (A$0.063, +12.5%) presented today and put on a quick 5%.

Woolworths Limited (A$34.59, +2.0%) numbers today as last night they took marketing to a new level with their program Recipe to Riches on TEN, advertorial high point;s mart marketing? Anyway the numbers don’t lie, Woolworths has posted a 24.4 jump in net profit to $2.26 billion as group revenues rose 4.4 per cent to $59.56 billion. Its flagship division, food and liquour, posted a pre-tax profit of $3.2 billion, up from $2.9 billion in the previous year. The supermarket giant decided to pay out $2.2 billion to shareholders via dividends and other distribution, upping its full-year dividend by 5.6 per cent to $1.33 a share.

AGL Energy Limited (A$15.08, +4.9%) had a good result today. The full integration of the Loy Yang power station and market share wins against rivals pushed the net profit of energy generator and retailer AGL ahead to $388.7 million for the year to June.

This compared with the net profit of $114.9 million a year earlier. Revenue rose to $9.7 billion, up 30.3 per cent Earnings a share hit 70.7 cents up from 23.8 cents. The final dividend was raised to 33 cents a share up from 32 cents.

BC Iron Limited (A$4.28, +5.7%) hit a record today as Shipments from its Nullagine mine in Western Australia, in which Fortescue Metals holds a 25 per cent stake, reached five million wet metric tonnes in the 2012/13 financial year, up 41 per cent from from the previous year. The final dividend to shareholders also doubled from the previous year to 30 cents per share.

In Sandfire Resources NL (A$6.00, -3.1%) it has posted a maiden profit after income tax of $88 million. That result was achieved after bringing in sales revenues of $507 million. Despite this no dividend for shareholders.

Lower interest rates are beginning to filter into the residential market, with housing affordability 16.76 per cent higher than it was a year ago.
Tomorrows News Today
Will it be tonight, that the Coalition of the Willing ( but broke) launch an airstrike on Syria? Not sure this one is sanctioned by the UN. But then again who listens to them anyway. Who needs proof either ,it’s not like the US and its Allies have great form on finding WMDs!

JP Morgan is in US regulators firing line for selling dodgy mortgage securities .They want $6bn off them! That will hurt!

‘King’ Carney from the’ Old lady at Thread Street’ will be addressing the multitudes tonight at a CBI Q&A Dinner..should prove enlightening.

Rooty hill may live up to its name tonight as the Peoples Challenge resumes on Sky Biz with our two glorious leaders (or one in waiting ) debating their policies!I think this word sums up the state of Labour politics at the moment.. an Omnishambles  “-a situation that has been comprehensively mismanaged, characterised by a string of blunders and miscalculations”. Thanks to the Malcolm Tucker from “Thick of It” for that gem!

Meanwhile the Indian Rupee has now dropped 19% this year to its worse loss since 1991.

Fifty years ago today Martin Luther King gave his famous speech.’ I have a dream’. Civil Rights have come a long way since then indeed. Obama is living testament to how far we have come. Chris Brown is a sign of how far to go!

A US bank chairman has pleaded guilty to using bailout money given to rescue his firm to buy himself a luxury home. Darryl Woods used $381,000 (£245,000) of the $1m given to his Mainstreet Bank to buy the Florida waterfront property.

TEPCO has accumulated the largest pool of radioactive water in the history of nuclear accidents. The utility must now decide what to do with it: dump in the ocean, evaporate into the air, or both.The more than 330,000 metric tons of water with varying levels of toxicity is stored in pits, basements and hundreds of tanks at the wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant.

Next Zombieland country to become fascinated with the new ‘Austerity Craze’ that is killing most of its southern neighbours is Holland. The Dutch government has agreed a further $8 billion in budget measures to honour the European Union’s deficit ceiling next year, Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem said. The latest package has been under discussion for several weeks already, and details of the cuts will be presented on Sept. 17 in the 2014 budget.

And looks like currency wars are rife around the Globe as fast US dollars are whisked off home. The US does not seem interested in the consequences of pulling the free money from the Globe. But it does seem to be creating huge waves around the world. We have had India, Brazil, and Thailand etc and now Turkey’s struggling currency hit a new all-time low against the dollar on Tuesday after Erdem Basci, the central bank’s president, said he had no concerns over current exchange rates. Well he would wouldn’t he! The Turkish lira has fallen over 13 % against the dollar since the start of the year.

 

Clarence

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