Another solid day on the ASX200 with a gain of 43 points to 5550(late surge adding 13 points in the chocolate wheel) leaving us up 24 points for the week. Not too shabby given what has been happening overseas. Of course some would say that we are stuck in a backwater compared to Japan and the US markets but that would just be sour grapes. Banks in focus today as Ex Divs in Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (A$32.88, -2.1%) and National Australia Bank Limited (A$33.22, -2.8%) took a small toll with nearly 20 points of falls due to divs so it was especially heartening. Telstra Corporation Limited (A$5.77, +1.8%) led the charge with Westpac Banking Corporation (A$34.84, +1.2%) and Commonwealth Bank of Australia (A$82.76, +1.9%) falling in behind as yield hungry investors sharpened their pencils and waded in yet again. Wesfarmers Limited (A$44.80, +1.7%) also enjoyed a day at the seaside despite the Tasmanian Applegate episode. Knew I couldn’t trust Curtis Stone.Iron ore stocks also rebounded with BHP Billiton Limited (A$34.49, +2.1%),RIO Tinto Limited (A$60.70, +1.2%) and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (A$3.15, +4.0%) thankfully popping back way above 3.00.Energy stocks also had gains despite further falls in the oil price with Woodside Petroleum Limited (A$40.69, +1.5%) ,Santos Limited (A$12.78, +1.9%) and Origin Energy Limited (A$14.54, +2.4%) all to the good.Other resource stocks joined in after suffering the slings and arrows this week in what looks like some book squaring before the weekend.Iluka Resources Limited (A$7.13, +3.8%) and Independence Group NL (A$4.19, +4.8%) joining some of the golds as they too bounced, Northern Star Resources Ltd (A$0.97, +4.3%),Oceanagold Corporation (A$1.925, +4.9%) and even poor old Newcrest Mining Limited (A$8.79, +1.3%). Expect the sellers to be back on Monday.

In industrials Australian Agricultural Company Limited (A$1.55, +8.4%) was a stand out as were Transfield Services Limited (A$1.885, +1.1%) and even poor old Metcash Limited (A$2.85, +1.8%) whilst Woolworths Limited (A$34.48, +0.4%) came in for some profit taking after a turbulent week.Some of the consumer stocks like Harvey Norman Holdings Limited (A$3.91, +2.4%),Premier Investments Limited (A$11.06, +2.1%) and Pacific Brands Limited (A$0.485, +5.4%) also put on a few shekels with Ten Network Holdings Limited (A$0.27, +17.4%) soaring on takeover talk.Seriously.

Sitting pretty today were Ten Network Holdings Limited (A$0.27, +17.4%),Australian Agricultural Company Limited (A$1.55, +8.4%),#ISD#,Vocus Communications Limited (A$5.74, +5.3%),Northern Star Resources Ltd (A$0.97, +4.3%),Oceanagold Corporation (A$1.925, +4.9%),Drillsearch Energy Limited (A$1.15, +5.5%) and Karoon Gas Australia Limited (A$2.89, +3.2%) with #ELD#,#SFX# and #PSY# in the small caps whilst losers were UGL Limited (A$5.46, -7.3%)(following cost blow outs)Amcom Telecommunications Limited (A$2.39, -4.8%)(plans scuppered ?)Energy Developments Limited (A$5.06, -3.8%),Clearview Wealth Limited (A$0.99, -4.8%),Arrium Limited (A$0.305, -1.6%)(burnt fingers)Qube Holdings Limited (A$2.36, -2.9%) and Cardno Limited (A$5.31, -0.9%) in the bigs with once mighty Vocus Communications Limited (A$5.74, +5.3%),SMS Management & Technology Limited (A$3.63, -6.9%) and Lynas Corporation Limited (A$0.055, -3.5%) in the smalls and getting smaller.Volume was a decent $4.5bn which is heading in the right direction.

Asian markets continue to bask in the reflective glory of money printing and the thought of more to come from Draghi. Japan (Nikkei): +0.3% Hong Kong: +0.1% Shanghai: +0.6% and Taiwan: +0.3%.Aussie dollar slips to 85.52 and Bitcons at $402 while Gold is trading at

Stocks and Stories

RBA minutes suggesting there is nothing shaking but the trees on interest rates. On hold for some time to come I suspect.

Ten Network Holdings Limited (A$0.27, +17.4%) Big mover today and plenty of volume as TEN becomes every traders play thing ,not just confined to the rich and famous.Whether anyone will want to actually take the leap and bid for the station remains to be seen.Lots of issues involved with ACCC etc and the egos of a billionaire or two.

BHP Billiton Limited (A$34.49, +2.1%) has quietly walked away from its share of a $US6 billion ($7 billion) oil and gas joint venture with fellow giants Hess Corporation and Chevron in the Gulf of Mexico.

Super Retail Group Limited (A$8.01, +1.4%) more positive noises than Shane Warne’s Twitter account as overseas raiders continue to circle.

Australian Agricultural Company Limited (A$1.55, +8.4%) big news in Little China as Minister Pyne was on Telly this morning talking free trade and live exports to our biggest friend. 1m head of cattle look to be heading to Shanghai and beyond in coming years or so he said. Apparently a disease called Bluetongue has held a deal up on the cattle but Forktongue seems to have solved that.

Good news for Beach Energy Limited (A$1.135, +0.4%) as it has flagged extremely large gas reserves in exploration acreage it holds in the Nappamerri Trough in the Cooper Basin.

Tomorrow’s News Today

US payrolls tonight. Economists looking for jobs growth in the range of 235,000, after a previous 248,000 a month before.5.9% unemployment at a six year low. Crisis settings still required. I think not!

Five year lows on the price of Iron Ore have given Vale a reason to come out and suggest over production will not be a factor forever. Well not at these prices for sure!

China has become the world’s biggest Bible printer with its 125th Millionth printed to date. Nearly as much money as the BOJ and the Fed!

Singapore’s central bank returned as much as S$12 billion ($9.3 billion) that it took from 19 lenders last year as a penalty for trying to rig benchmark interest rates.

Exporter in Japan are the big winners from operation “Banzai Print” as the Yen tumbles and their profits soar. Net income to the top 195 companies will rise to a whopping 17.5 trillion Yen!Way to go Abe!

Have a great weekend

Clarence

XXX

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