- ASX 200 continues in quiet trade up 28 to 5960.
- High 5968 Low 5937. Modest volume.
- ASX 200 up 0.9% for the week.
- Banks and miners lead the assault on 6000.
- Healthcare in rude health led by CSL.
- TLS continues to suffer.
- AUD falls after anaemic retail numbers at 76.87c.
- US futures up 20.
- Asian markets mixed with Japan up 0.53% and China CSI down 0.49%.
Movers and Shakers
- SFR +6.66% copper exposure.
- VOC +4.64% shorts covering.
- WSA +2.68% nickel price rises.
- RHC +2.73% rally resumes.
- PPH -3.46% book squaring.
- A2M -3.96% profit taking.
- CAT -5.29% on director’s interest.
- BUL +3.23% broker interest.
- BPT +4.72% drawing strength from recent drilling report.
- TLS -0.28% concerns after investor day.
- Speculative stocks of the day: Lake Resources (LKE) +39.29% raises $1.66m in unsecured note offer. Good quarterly report with four prime lithium projects in Argentina. Drill program to come.
- Biggest risers – SFR, BPT, VOC, ASL, EML and WHC.
- Biggest fallers – BLA, EHL, BWX, MYX and A2M.
- Genworth Mortgage Insurance (GMA) –1.06% Third quarter earnings showed underlying NPAT has decreased 14.6% YoY to $40.5m. GMA has updated its 2017 full year outlook, expecting Net Earned Premium to decline by 10-15% and full year loss ratio guidance to be between 35-40%. The company plans to continue its $100m share buyback, having already completed $45m of it so far.
- Perseus Mining (PRU) -1.54% has finished its initial mineral resources and ore estimates for its Yaoure Gold Project. The company estimates 43.1m tonnes of mineral reserves containing 1.93m ounces of gold at a grade of 1.93g/t with a cut-off grade of 0.4g/t.
- Freedom Insurance Group (FIG) -33.33% Has updated its 1HFY18 expectations, saying that Net revenue will be 3-11% higher YoY despite expecting a decrease of 9-15% YoY. The company expects rising operating expenses to offset this revenue increase and result in an EBITDA of between $7.5m-$9m compared to $11.1m pcp.
- Bubs Australia (BUB) +3.77% Has acquired NuLac for $25m cash with a further $13.4m to be paid over two years. NuLac Foods own CapriLac and Coach House Dairy which produce goat milk and goat infant formula. This acquisition will bring the company’s total goat milk production to 6.2m litres annually. The company also announced the completion of its share placement raising $15m and the intention to further raise $5m through a share purchase plan.
- Australia’s services PMI fell to 51.4 this month from 52.1 in September. This marks the 7th straight month of expansion however continues the decline in growth seen in the last 4 months. Sales and new orders fell as stock increased. Notably, employment also increased 1.9 points to 53.3.
- Australian Retail sales continued the flat trend of the last three months being unchanged vs and expected 0.4% rise regarding turnover at current prices. This is despite a 0.16% increase in volume turnover for the quarter. Weakest numbers in 7-years. Sales were dragged down by a 1.7% drop in other retailing, a category that includes newspaper and book shops, recreational goods and pharmaceutical toiletry and cosmetic goods.
- New Zealand is hoping to encourage thousands of British construction workers to emigrate as part of a drive to deliver the country’s biggest ever infrastructure and housing programme. New Zealand is suffering from a skills shortage and ineeds 65,000 new workers over the next five years to meet growth and replace people who leave.
- Apple suppliers in demand as iPhone X interest grows. Hon Hai, the main assembler of the iPhone X, rose as much as 1.8%in Taiwan. Wistron, another Apple assembler, rose as much as 4.3%.
- Beijing moves to tighten oversight of Chinese companies investing offshore requiring companies to seek approval for some foreign deals.
- Alibaba profits surge 83% powered by online shopping
EUROPE AND US MORNING HEADLINES
- AIG is forced to add another US$840m to its reserves on swelling claims.
- One former employee shut down Trump’s Twitter account on his last day. Goldman’s Blankstein discovers Twitter in absence.
- Americans are renouncing citizenship faster than Liberal and National politicians. 1,376 Americans renounced their U.S. citizenship, putting the annual tally on track to top 2016’s record, data from the Treasury Department show.
- And drug overdoses rise in US too up by 21% last year. The overall rate of American drug-overdose deaths has more than tripled in this century.
- Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro said late on Thursday that the country would restructure and refinance its debts after making one final payment by the state-oil company.
Two elderly women were out driving in a large car.
Both could barely see over the dashboard. As they were cruising along they came to an intersection. The stoplight was red but they just went on through. The woman in the passenger seat thought to herself “I must be losing it, I could have sworn we just went through a red light.”
After a few more minutes they came to another intersection and the light was red again and again they went right though.
This time the woman in the passenger seat was almost sure that the light had been red but was really concerned that she was losing it.
She was getting nervous and decided to pay very close attention to the road and the next intersection to see what was going on
At the next intersection, sure enough, the light was definitely red and they went right through and she turned to the other woman and said, “Mildred! Did you know we just ran through three red lights in a row! You could have killed us!”
Mildred turned to her and said, “Oh, am I driving?”