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After a shaky start on the terrible news from Ukraine, buyers stepped into the market looking for bargains. With the finger pointing firmly at the Russian backed rebels it seems possible that this tragic loss of life may provoke some resolution or at least pressure to solve the ongoing civil war. This idea seems to be helping the market rather than the escalation between US and Russian interests. The market bottomed at 5484 before closing with a good push up 9 to 5532 for a rise of around 50 points for the week. The themes of the week, sell banks, buy resources was partially reversed today as book squaring pre a nervy weekend ensured players kept risk at a minimum. National Australia Bank Limited (A$34.18, +0.5%),Westpac Banking Corporation (A$33.90, +0.8%) and Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (A$33.42, +0.6%) all to the good whilst BHP Billiton Limited (A$38.39, -0.4%),RIO Tinto Limited (A$64.29, -0.7%) and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (A$4.59, -1.5%) all fell. Telcos and big consumer stocks also fell into a bullish line as Telstra Corporation Limited (A$5.43, +0.2%) consolidated their 13 year high, #WOW and Wesfarmers Limited (A$43.47, +0.4%) also did well as did property trusts like GPT Group (A$3.86, -1.3%) and Dexus Property Group (A$1.16, +1.3%).

Energy stocks were narrowly mixed as Woodside Petroleum Limited (A$42.20, +0.8%) continued to find favour following their results but Santos Limited (A$14.15, -0.4%) eased after their numbers but Uranium and Coal stocks did ok with Whitehaven Coal Limited (A$1.615, +1.3%),Paladin Energy Ltd (A$0.355, +2.9%),Coal of Africa Limited (A$0.069, +11.3%),New Hope Corporation Limited (A$2.94, +1.4%) and Energy Resources of Australia Limited (A$1.20, +2.1%) enjoying the limelight as Japan looks to restart some nukes and Europe will probably look to find alternatives to Russian gas.

Winners today were golden as Oceanagold Corporation (A$3.44, +6.8%),Newcrest Mining Limited (A$11.52, +3.2%),Kingsgate Consolidated Limited (A$0.925, +2.8%) and Beadell Resources Limited (A$0.615, +3.4%) rallied as did Sirius Resources NL (A$4.01, +4.4%),STW Communications Group Limited (A$1.48, +2.4%),Macquarie Atlas Roads Group (A$3.38, +2.4%) and Aquarius Platinum Limited (A$0.43, +3.6%) whereas #XRO# continued to see seepage from the hot balloon as did #FLN# with Syrah Resources Limited (A$5.24, -5.8%),Seek Limited (A$16.30, -3.9%),#VET# and Tpg Telecom Limited (A$5.50, -2.3%) losers in the bigs and Mirabela Nickel Limited (A$0.155, -8.8%),Western Desert Resources Limited (A$0.245, -3.9%),#ICQ# and Netcomm Wireless Limited (A$0.76, -3.2%) suffering in their smalls. Volume was once again the wrong side of $4bn despite the volatility with the Aussie dollar at 93.60 and tulips at $667 and Gold slipping slightly to $1314 as tensions wane somewhat.

Meanwhile in Asia Tokyo was down 1.2%,HK down 0.7% and China up 0.4% Malaysian Airlines, dropped to 20.5 sen, taking the shares’ losses this year to 34 percent.

Stocks and Stories

Santos Limited (A$14.15, -0.4%) Better than expected numbers from PNG helped push June half revenues ahead a hefty 25 per cent with the company flagging a stronger second half.In the June six months, revenue hit $1.89 billion after a 22 per cent rise in the quarter to $974 million.

Sydney Airport (A$4.35, +0.7%) reported robust numbers especially coming in from China with International arrivals up 4.7% and total passengers up 2.3%Chinese New Year and Easter helping, plus the Ashes and other business events bringing more people to the Emerald City.

Sing us a song Piano Man, that is the DJs piano man as the stock spends its last day trading on the ASX. One of the conditions of the takeover was the music man keeping his gig at the Elizabeth Street store. Solly played a blinder here and cements his legend status.

Some look through analysis on Seek Limited (A$16.30, -3.9%) given the Chinese Zhaophin is trading on 11 times earnings whereas Seek is on 20 times!

Mineral Resources Limited (A$11.10, +5.2%) reported a blockbuster production report after market close yesterday. Iron ore exports surged 88 per cent to a record 10.4 million tonnes, or 4 per cent above guidance. The company said it recorded a 14 per cent increase in quarterly iron ore exports to 5.9MT for the June quarter. Huge volume on the close and a big squirt up as the resource theme continues.

Asciano Limited (A$5.96, +3.8%) confirmed that it is in talks with Chinese merchants over a $1.1bn stake in Patricks.

Tomorrow’s News Today

Gaza and Ukraine will be the key focus over the weekend obviously. But expect the US market to bounce back from its shocker yesterday. RasPutin may have gone a bridge too far!

Property prices fell in 55 of the 70 Chinese cities last month from May, the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement today, the most since January 2011.This was judged to be a positive as the government will have to do more to support prices. The Shanghai Stock Exchange Property Index jumped 2.9 percent, the most since April.

Alibaba Group will wait until September to conduct its U.S. initial public offering as it seeks regulatory approval of its prospectus.


Looks like Europe and the UK are taking Climate Change and the renewables energy business seriously with almost £8bn invested in renewable energy in the UK last year, according to Government numbers. The report showed that £45bn has been invested in the UK’s power generation and networks since 2010, supporting thousands of jobs, with an average of £7bn a year in renewables, which now produce 15% of the country’s electricity.

Seems like we are not the only ones looking at our banking sector with the UK’s Markets watchdog the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to recommend a full competition inquiry into banks. The big four High Street banks, which provide 77% of current accounts, will be watching the CMA’s decision closely.

Google reports a 22% jump in revenue and profits of $3.4bn during the second quarter, helped by strong advertising sales.

Microsoft to sack 18,000 workers with khaki pants ,especially from Finland apparently, as it looks to rationalise its Nokia purchase! Still at least the battery lasts three days!
Have a great weekend




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