ASX 200 up 17 points to 5561 building on the weeks’ gains. Banks and insurers the stand out as Sirtex craters. Asian markets firmer with Japan up 1.24% and China up 0.86%. AUD 74.60c and US Futures up 12.

A strong week as the US markets continue to lead the way with financials and big miners continuing to be the standouts. For the week the ASX 200 is up from 5444 to 5561 for a gain of around 2.15%. Not too shabby and importantly the top of the channel has been blown away. Next week will be interesting given the FOMC meeting and central bank pre-Xmas fun.

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US markets 18 from 22 up. Will it be 19 from 23? Must be due a rest soon. Even the much watched Shiller CAPE index at 27.9 is flashing some warning signs. Poor old Obama. He must feel very unappreciated. Democrats lose. Market rallies 5%.

STOCKS AND SECTORS

It was all about the Banks today.

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  • The Big Bank Basket rose again to $ 175.60 with ANZ Bank +1.32% the best performer up 4.1% for the week. Insurers too in demand as the QBE Insurance (QBE) +1.78% juggernaut rolls on up 7.1% for the week. IAG Australia (IAG) +0.85% and Suncorp (SUN) +0.60% picked up the vibe as did wealth managers geared to equity markets, Macquarie Group (MQG) +1.57%, Magellan Financial (MFG) +1.09% and BT Investment (BTT) +1.76%.
  • Resources and cyclicals in pause and reflect mode. BHP -0.23%, RIO -0.13% took some time out for good behaviour whilst Fortescue Metals (FMG) -0.15% slipped negative at the close too with base metal stocks weaker as South32 (S32) -2.33% and Independence Group (IGO) -1.83%. Gold miners mixed with Newcrest (NCM) -0.58% and Westgold (WGX) +2.72%.1.55
  • Energy stocks dominated by the Woodside (WPL) +2.38%, Origin Energy (ORG) +% and Paladin Energy (PDN) +4.35%. A rare good day for the uranium company.
  • Industrials mixed, gaming stocks took their cue from Crown Resorts (CWN) -5.32% and more big troubles in little China (Macau). Aristocrat Leisure (ALL) -2.74% and Tabcorp (TAH) -2.31%. Healthcare was understandably dominated by the Sirtex (SRX) -37.23% train wreck CSL -0.37% struggled to hold with Mayne Pharma (MYX) +6.62% and Mesoblast (MSB) +6.50% back on the biotech bounce. Generic drug inquiry due to announce soon.
  • Telcos and IT were mixed. TPG (TPM) +0.82% and Chorus Limited (CNU) +2.43% though Telstra (TLS) unchanged again stuck in the slow lane. Knew it would not last in Aconex (ACX) -4.00% and Nextdc(NXT) -2.33% though Hansen Technologies (HSN) +4.20% did well.
  • Media stocks had a positive day in a revenue challenged world. Nine Entertainment (NEC) +1.49%, Fairfax (FXJ) +2.29% and Seven West Media (SWM) +4.26%.
  • Discretionary retails in the dog house with Baby Bunting (BBN) -2.13% and Apiam Animal Health (AHX) -4.81% and Beacon Lighting (BLX) -2.60%
  • Speculative stock of the day: NKOTB GetSwift (GSW) +50.00% began life on the ASX today with a pretty solid debut. The logistics management company raised $5m at 20c. According to the PR. Its despatches like Uber, tracks like Dominos’ and optimises routes like Fedex. Is there anything it cannot do?

CORPORATE NEWS

  • Emperor casualty of the day was Sirtex (SRX) -37.23% with the company announcing lower dose sales from its US operation and a profit downgrade. Worldwide dose sales growth would only be between 4 and 6 % in the six months to December 31, compared to 15.7% in the prior corresponding period. Full-year earnings will be flat at $74m at best, the company said, but could drop by up to 12%. Once again the company was bullish only 6 weeks ago at the AGM.
  • Crown Resorts (CWN) -5.32% back on the nose as reports that Chinese authorities are once again clamping down on Macau Casinos, this time through the amount gamblers can withdraw from ATM machines. The cap on the China UnionPay Co. cards, used by about half of mainland Chinese gamblers to withdraw money in Macau, takes effect Saturday, reducing the daily withdrawal ceiling to 5,000 patacas (US$626).
  • ANZ Bank (ANZ) +1.32% has followed rivals in pushing up variable interest rates for property investors, blaming higher funding costs and its obligations to regulators. The bank said property investor borrowers would face a 0.08bps increase, with its benchmark rate for these customers increasing to 5.6%.
  • Westpac (WBC) +0.47% chief executive Brian Hartzer told shareholders at the AGM that the government needs to spend more money on infrastructure. Not much else which pleased the market.
  • In other bank news the ACCC case against ANZ, NAB and WBC on BBSW fixing could drag on to 2018 as the court looks to hear the cases in four phases.

ECONOMIC NEWS

The ATO has today released 2014-15 tax data for close to 2000 companies, and there are plenty of gems in the numbers. Starting top down, there were approximately 1.2m companies operating in Australia and they reported total income tax payable of $67bn in 2014-15.

  • BHP went from the biggest taxpayer in 2014 to 6th in 2015.
  • Qantas was the largest company by income with no tax payable, in a year it reported a loss.

BOND CORNER

  • The day the music died. July 11th. This was the day that the greatest bull market in bond market history died. On that day, the 30-year US Treasury yield hit a record intraday low of 2.0882%. The yield on Australia’s benchmark 10-year government bottomed three weeks later, on August 2, at 1.811%; it’s currently above 2.8%.
  • 5-Year Bonds up 4bps to yield 2.30%
  • 10-year Bonds up 3bps to yield 2.82%

ASIAN NEWS

  • Chinese inflation continues to rise: in November producer prices rose 3.3% from a year ago, the highest since October 2011. The consumer inflation rate rose to 2.3% from a year earlier, the fastest pace since April this year, compared with a 2.1% posted the prior month.
  • Producer prices in the mining industry surged 14.8%, accelerating from a 7.9% pace the prior month

pokemon

Nintendo Co. rose to the highest in more than four months after starting to market its upcoming Super Mario Run smartphone game. Unlike the hit game, which was created by San Francisco-based Niantic Inc., Super Mario Run is developed 100% at Nintendo.

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EUROPE AND THE US

  • “I say to man in shop “Is rat.” He say “No, no, no. Is a special kind of hamster. Is filigree Siberian hamster.” So Mario Draghi is arguing about the taper. Is it a taper or a trim. Lower for longer? Draghi insists it’s not a taper. I smell a rat.
  • The space hero John Glenn, the first American to orbit the earth, has died aged 95.
  • In more tragic news Germany is cracking down on CFD providers. Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) announced it planned to restrict the marketing, distribution and sale of CFDs to private investors. Under BaFin’s proposals, firms will not be able to offer CFDs to retail investors if the losses suffered by punters exceed the margin in their trading accounts and they have to find other means to pay off the losses as a result.

And finally…have a great weekend.

A man is getting into the shower just as his wife is finishing up her shower, when the doorbell rings.

The wife quickly wraps herself in a towel and runs downstairs. When she opens the door, there stands Bob, the next-door neighbor.

Before she says a word, Bob says, “I’ll give you $800 to drop that towel.”

After thinking for a moment, the woman drops her towel and stands naked in front of Bob.

After a few seconds, Bob hands her $800 and leaves. The woman wraps back up in the towel and goes back upstairs.

When she gets to the bathroom, her husband asks, “Who was that?” “It was Bob the next door neighbor,” she replies. “Great,” the husband says, “did he say anything about the $800 he owes me?”

Moral of the story: If you share critical information pertaining to credit and risk with your shareholders in time, you may be in a position to prevent avoidable exposure.

What does Santa suffer from if he gets stuck in a chimney?
Claustrophobia!

What do they sing at a snowman’s birthday party?
Freeze a jolly good fellow

Why does Santa have three gardens?
So he can ‘ho ho ho’!

 

Saw this on Buy Swap Sell web site

Image result for snowman in need of repair

Clarence

XXXX

mt_tryforfree

NT Markets

Get a Global take on things at http://www.ntmarkets.com

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