ASX 200 slides 49 points to test 5700 as banks and miners slide. Quiet trading again with Asian markets falling again with Japan down 0.80% and China down 0.41%. AUD rose to 75.00c and US Futures down 38.


  • Banks and financials eased back on profit taking with the Big Bank Basket (BBB) -1% to $177.32. ANZ Bank -1.27% the worst of the bunch. Elsewhere insurers and REITS also eased back with QBE Insurance (QBE) -0.49%. Wealth managers too slid away with Macquarie Group (MQG) -1.38%, Henderson Group (HGG) -1.30% and Magellan Financial (MFG) -0.91%. In REITS Stockland (SGP) -1.57% and GPT -0.62%.
  • Big miners stumbled after a positive open with BHP -0.22%, RIO -0.82% and Fortescue Metals (FMG) -3.31%. Base metal stocks mixed with South32(S32)-3.15% though Oz Minerals (OZL) +0.88% and Independence Group (IGO) +1.48% bucking the trend.
  • Industrials weaker across the board. Yowie (YOW) -3.31% was the subject of speculation on the availability of its chocolate treats in Wal Mart and said it was restocking following the Xmas and Thanksgiving period. Elsewhere consumer stocks weaker with Coca Cola (CCL) -1.39%, Wesfarmers (WES) -0.72% and Treasury Wine (TWE) -0.76%. In transport Aurizon Holdings (AZJ) -2.48%, Cabcharge (CAB) -2.80%, Qantas (QAN) -0.28% and Brambles (BXB) -1.11%
  • Energy stocks slid although Woodside (WPL) +0.38% managed to stay positive with Santos (STO) -1.93% one of the biggest losers.
  • Gold stocks were one of the few bright spots in a Red Wedding day. The flight to safety trade is back on as worries over the Trump trade continue. Newcrest (NCM) +1.71%, Evolution Mining (EVN) +3.21% and Regis Resources (RRL) +5.10%.
  • Healthcare continued to fall, CSL -0.68%, Nanosonics (NAN) -4.43% gave back some of the recent gains as Ramsay Healthcare (RHC) -1.00% and Primary Healthcare (PRY) -1.55%
  • IT stocks back in the small dog house Aconex (ACX) -1.72%, Wisetech Global (WTC) -1.23%, Isentia (ISD) -4.00% and Altium Limited (ALU) -1.66%.
  • Speculative stock of the day: Petrel Energy (PRL) +31.25% as drilling in Uruguay nears. The stock has doubled in the least month as the four-well program kicks off soon. Rights issue was done at 1c now 2c.


  • RIO Tinto (RIO) -0.82% shipped less iron ore in 2016 than originally forecast, and copper production also fell short of guidance. The miner shipped 345.9m tonnes from its iron ore divisions in Canada and Australia in 2016, which was lower than the 350m tonnes originally forecast. Iron ore has more than doubled since bottoming in December 2015 amid better-than-expected consumption in China after government stimulus. Figures on Friday showed that China imported a record 1.024bn tonnes in 2016, up 7.5% from a year earlier, with most cargoes from Australia and Brazil.
  • BT Investment (BTT) -4.54% released its FUM numbers today for the end of the quarter and it was a little disappointing at $44.1bn under management up from $44.5bn with net inflows of $1.9bn. FUM up only 0.4bn suggests some underperformance from the funds taking its toll on performance fees.
  • Morningstar has downgraded Computershare (CPU) -2.22% to ‘reduce’ with fair value now around 1100c.
  • Nine Entertainment (NEC) -2.25% lost two board members today with the resignation of Elizabeth Gaines and Holly Kramer leaving just four on the board at present, Peter Costello, David Gyngell, Hugh Marks and Catherine West.


  • Investment lending jumped 4.9%, while loans for owner-occupiers rose at a more tepid pace of 0.4%.
  • Home loan approvals rose 0.9%in the month, beating expectations of a 0.3% drop. The value of total housing finance was $33.2bn in the month, according to the ABS.
  • Sales of new vehicles edged higher in December to set the seal on a record year for the industry, courtesy of strong demand for sport utilities and commercial vehicles. Australian Bureau of Statistics showed sales rose 0.3% in December, from November when they dipped 0.7%. Sales for 2016 reached an all-time high of 1.18m, with SUVs taking a record share of 37% of the market.




  • In Macau, VIP gaming, measured by revenue from the baccarat card games by high-stakes gamblers from China, rose 13% in the last three months of 2016, marking a turnaround since the first quarter of 2014. Mass market games improved 7.3%.



  • Big night tonight as UK PM Theresa May outlines the way forward for Brexit. Clean break looks the way she will go. Sterling should be the biggest casualty in the ensuing chaos. 12 key priorities for negotiations to be announced in a complete and final plan. Very courageous Prime Minister.


The new lady is ‘not for turning’.

  • Rolls-Royce to pay £671m to settle bribery probes. International deal covers corruption allegations in China, Brazil and Indonesia.
  • Italian sunglass makerLuxottica (Ray Bans and Oakley) has agreed to a £40bn merger deal with Essilor, the world’s leading manufacturer of lenses, to create a global behemoth in the eyewear industry, The two companies will have a combined annual revenue of more than £13bn, they said in a statement, adding that they will employ more than 140,000 employees with sales in more than 150 countries.
  • As the world’s elite gather in Davos, here are the results of what keeps the attendees up at night apart from slack room service and travel entitlement inquiries.


And finally……………

An 86-year-old man went to his doctor for his quarterly check-up… The doctor asked him how he was feeling, and the 86-year-old said ,’Things are great and I’ve never felt better.’

I now have a 20 year-old bride who is pregnant with my child.

‘So what do you think about that Doc ?’
One day he was setting off to go hunting. The doctor considered his question for a minute and then began to tell a story.

‘I have an older friend , much like you, who is an avid hunter
And never misses a season.’
In a bit of a hurry, he accidentally picked up his walking cane instead of his gun.’

‘As he neared a lake , he came across a very large male beaver sitting at the water’s edge.
He realised he’d left his gun at home and so he couldn’t shoot the magnificent creature.

Out of habit he raised his cane, aimed it at the animal as if
It were his favourite hunting rifle and went ‘bang, bang’.’

‘Miraculously, two shots rang out and the beaver fell over dead.

Now, what do you think of that?’ asked the doctor.

The 86-year-old said, ‘Logic would strongly suggest that somebody else
Pumped a couple of rounds into that beaver.’

The doctor replied, ‘My point exactly.’





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