ASX 200 down 16 points to 5467 in quiet pre NFP trading. Energy stocks one of the only bright spots in lacklustre trade. UK pound flash crashes as ‘algos’ go wild with AUD slips to 75.75c and US Futures down 33. Asian markets slightly weaker with Japan off 0.46% with China still closed.
STOCKS AND SECTORS
- Banks managed to eke out small gains against a sea of troubles. Westpac (WBC) +0.59% the best of the bunch with recent results from Bank of Queensland (BOQ) -0.9% still weighing.
- REITS suffered today as the dream run looks to be well and truly over given rates rises look increasingly likely from the US at least. Scentre Group (SCG) -1.96%, Westfield (WFD) -2.40% and Brookfield Prime (BPA) -6.25% the worst of the sector.
- In resources BHP +0.78% remained in the oil camp whilst some of the base metal stocks fared ok led by Iluka Resources (ILU) +1.64% and Independence Group (IGO) +2.03%. South32 (S32) -4.33% failed to kick on from yesterday’s rally and golds suffered as bullion turned sour again last night and continued in the Asian session. Newcrest (NCM) -1.96%, Resolute Mining (RSG) -4.94% and Beadell Resources (BDR) -6.58% all under the scalpel.
- Energy shares were one of the only bright spots with Whitehaven (WHC) +7.03% continuing its stellar run, other coal stocks also did well with New Hope (NHC) +1.44% and Yancoal (YAL) +4.76% although Stanmore (SMR) -2.44% took a well-earned rest. WorleyParsons (WOR) +1.74% joined in the fun as did Woodside (WPL) +1.39%
- In Industrials telecoms continued to see selling as broker downgrades in Vocus (VOC) -3.77% infected the sector. Telstra (TLS) -0.99% looking increasing like a sub $5 stock. Healthcare back in the casualty ward led lower by continued weakness in Estia Health (EHE) -6.25% despite some buying from Kerry Stokes and brokers starting to feel the worse may be in the price.
- Speculative stock of the day: Intec (INL) +340.00% after announcing a deal with SciDev for the exclusive manufacture of the SciDev OptiFlow system of which Intec owns a 50% interest.
- Karoon Gas (KAR) +13.62% after announcing confirmed it is negotiating to buy stakes in two oil fields from Brazil’s Petrobras. The company said it was in talks to conduct confirmatory due diligence.
- Magellan Financial (MFG) +1.94% after showing FUM had fallen to $42.31bn from $42.459bn. There were net inflows in September however of around $407m which suggest sperfor4mance is down with markets struggling throughout September.
- Cimic (CIM) +1.05% after Vision stream was awarded a contract in NZ with Chorus NZ for a ultra-fast broadband connection. The new agreement for the subsidiary is worth around NZ$390m over four years.
- AJ Lucas (AJL) -3.12% received an early Xmas present as the UK government has overruled the local Lancashire council and will allow Cuadrilla (49% owned) to drill and test its Preston Road project in NW England. Huge range with a high of 60c and a low of 38c. One for the traders.
- Resources and energy exports are now expected to reach $176bn in 2016-17, a rise of 12% year on year, and well above the earlier estimatethat exports would run at $163bn according to the latest Resources and Energy Quarterly from the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. The driver for much of the gain is spikes in both coking coal and iron ore.
- Ford finished up today with the last cars trundling off the assembly line as it was revealed that it cost tax payers $7000 for every car it made in recent years.
- Chinese FX reserves shrank to $US3.17 trillion last month from $US3.185 trillion in August, central bank data showed. Economists had expected reserves to ease to $US3.18 trillion.
EUROPE AND THE US
- Currency traders are a nervous lot as a sterling flash crash hit the GBP this morning.
- Seems that ‘Hard Brexit’ is the issue. According to some news sources the French President Hollande is signalling a much tougher Brexit stance with negotiations. Let’s face it the French have hated the English for a thousand years. They have form.
- Moves from the May government in the UK to push companies to reveal how many foreigners they employ and further to punish banks who fail to make checks on foreigners doing business with them.
- The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond told Bloomberg Television, that the Brexit vote was a call to impose tougher control on immigration amid concerns an influx of foreign workers has pressured wages in the low-skilled workforce. All looking good then a calm Brexit then? Not. No wonder the pound remains under pressure.
- Mars to buy out Buffett to take full control of Wrigley. Full merger with chewing gum maker comes as US confectionery market faces slow growth.
- US aircraft maker Boeing is expected to announce a major deal to supply Qatar Airways with widebody jetliners at a news conference later on Friday. The deal could be for at least 30 Boeing 777 and 787 jets, valued at about US$6.7bn.
- Twitter shares fell heavily overnight as technology website Recode reported that Google, Apple and Walt Disney were unlikely to bid for the company. Salesforce is now seen as the only remaining possible buyer.
- Hurricane Matthew is shaping up as the strongest storm to hit since 2005. Florida insurers have already been hit hard as the industry and the people brace for losses. Possible impact on QBE?
- 172,000 is the magic payroll number tonight. And Trump and Clinton go head to head again on Sunday.
And finally……………….having spent a day trying to sort out a web connection issue I am tearing my hair out…Telstra gotta love em…lots of very grovelling customer service people but just keep going round and round..same old telstra just a different cheaper accent no wonder they are $5!!!
So try this for a giggle…Hide all of the desktop icons on someone’s computer and replace the monitor’s wallpaper with a screen-shot of their desktop.
and finally..apologies for teh profanity but it does suit the contecxt!!!
A wife send her husband an sms on a cold winter evening: “Windows frozen”. The husband send answer back: “Pour some warm water over them”. Some time later husband receives answer from his wife: “The computer is completely fucked now”.
Have a great weekend and and safe if you are in the way of a big blow!
The crop report could be a little affected by Hurricane Matthew!!!!