A dismal start to the day on the back of overseas markets to be down 50 odd but buyers stepped back in after a bottle or two of red infuriator at lunch time. In the end we closed down 27 points at 5350 with a low of 5322. Losses were most pronounced in the miners as the Aussie dollar rally took the wind out of the sails out of the Iron Ore sector. Banks were solid as is their usual modus operandi whilst losses were limited in other sectors. Energy stocks were firmer with Oil Search Limited (A$8.42, +1.6%) leading the way but Woodside Petroleum Limited (A$38.43, +0.1%) were also bucking the trend on Israeli news of the whale acquisition.

Big winners today were APN News & Media Limited (A$0.59, +3.5%),Qantas Airways Limited (A$1.075, +1.9%),Tpg Telecom Limited (A$6.32, +2.6%),Oil Search Limited (A$8.42, +1.6%),Nufarm Limited (A$4.00, +2.3%),Csr Limited (A$3.32, +1.8%) and #MRM whilst in the doggy doo were Iproperty Group Limited (A$3.39, -7.4%),Navitas Limited (A$6.93, -7.5%),PBT,Northern Star Resources Ltd (A$1.11, -5.1%) and XRO. Volume was confined to the big boys at $4.2bn.

Aussie dollar was at 92.40 whilst Gold at $1305 and Bitcons at $618.

In Asia, The MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped 0.6 percent lunch in Tokyo with Japan’s Topix index sliding 1.4 percent as most stocks traded without the right to their latest dividend.

Stocks and Stories

House stock Kina Petroleum Limited (A$0.40, +5.3%) had a good day after their annual report. #RLE# suffered a little today on thin volumes and Mobile Embrace slipped to close to the recent placement price.

Woodside Petroleum Limited (A$38.43, +0.1%) is expected to sign its final agreements to take up equity in Israel’s giant Leviathan gas project amid speculation that exports will be limited to 6 to 8 billion cubic metres a year,

Total household wealth (net worth) stood at a record $7.532 trillion at the end of December, up $253.7 billion over the quarter – the biggest quarterly rise in four years. Wealth rose to a record $322,757 per household in the December quarter, up $9,529 over the quarter.

Another one bites the dust. Glencore Xstrata announcing the closure of the Ravensworth underground mine in New South Wales.

Transurban Group (A$7.32, +0.3%) has strengthened its position in Sydney’s toll roads, with the $475 million purchase of the Cross City Tunnel.

Big day for Lynas Corporation Limited (A$0.225, +25.0%) as it upped its production numbers .Some relief at least but they will need more than this to arrest the slid.

Tomorrow’s News Today

Good to see that Lachlan Murdoch is a plank. In Rupert’s grand plan. Nice to know. Ten Network Holdings Limited (A$0.27, +1.9%) will be happy. The boy who came in from the cold!

Interestingly George Soros has said that the US must sell their strategic stockpile to punish the Russians. You sure? There are some people starting to listen as well. If that is a strategic use of the oil stockpile I am a monkeys aunt!

Here’s why Russia can do whatever they want as Ukraine has raised its gas prices by 50% to win approval from the IMF for their bailout. Of course if they had gone with Russia all would be well. Germans surprisingly quiet.

A man from Hong Kong was caught at a checkpoint at Shenzhen trying to smuggle more than 7,000 diamonds in his underwear, according to a media report.

The man was stopped at the Shenzhen Bay crossing last Thursday after customs officers noticed he was walking in a peculiar manner. Well you would wouldn’t you!

In the UK cash buyers purchase 1 in 3 homes!

Last question time and parliamentary sitting of the pre-budget world. Can anyone take these ‘Muppets’ seriously anymore?

Lord Adair Turner, the ex-chairman of the Financial Services Authority (FSA), said mortgage and commercial property lending in advanced economies had played a “central role” in almost all financial crises and post-crisis recessions. And it still does! In fact the problems that led to the GFC are back. Bigger and better!

London will become the first centre outside Asia in which investors will be able to clear and settle Chinese renminbi trades.The major boost to the City came after the Treasury said Britain and China would next week sign an agreement opening the way to much greater volumes of renminbi-denominated trading in the UK.

Lots of conferences at the moment with Mines and (no) Money in HK.





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