Todays Highlights

  • ASX 200 down 11 to 5658. Good fightback. Great close.
  • High 5670 Low 5621. Average volume. Ignoring US futures. For now.
  • Optimism evaporates as Huawei CFO arrested in Canada on US instructions.
  • Banks off lows with big miners under pressure..
  • Defensives back in focus. REITs, utilities and staples.
  • Tech wrecked. High PE growth stocks under sustained pressure.
  • Bond proxy stocks in demand.
  • Cricket started well.
  • AUD under pressure to 72.25c
  • Bitcoin weaker again at $3685.
  • Aussie Gold firmer on AUD sell off at $1716
  • US futures whacked down 358. Not a good sign. CME intervenes. Large sell order.
  • Asian markets woeful on Huawei news with Japan down 2.53% and China 1.83%


  • HLS +4.12% defensives in demand. The company formerly known as PRY.
  • SCG +3.80% defence in REITs
  • SXY -6.49% oil slipping.
  • NEA -6.36% tech shares sold off.
  • APT -5.33% high growth PE under pressure.
  • BOQ – another executive change in two days.
  • ING +2.47% EGM approves cash back.
  • NUF -0.97% AGM comments.
  • SEK -4.71% broker downgrades
  • MFG +2.00% FUM report
  • AHY +45.60% sells troubled toilet paper business.
  • TCL +1.21% bond proxies back in favour.
  • ALX +3.19% Dulles Greeway update cheers
  • Speculative stock of the day: Croplogic (CLI) +37.50% Has recently raised $2.6m to accelerate growth and replied to an ASX speeding ticket. Big volume.
  • Biggest Risers –GMA, AHG, CHC, NST, SCG and MGR.
  • Biggest Fallers –NEC, URF, SXY, NEA, APT and WBA.


  • Asaleo Care (AHY) +45.60% To sell its Australian Consumer Tissue business to Solaris Paper for $180m. The sale is anticipated to lift the company’s EBITDA margin and be accretive to group FY19 EBITDA forecast. It will also result in a book profit of between $15 and 20m.
  • Magellan Financial Group (MFG) +2.00% Has reported total funds under management at November 30 of $72.11bn, down 1.2% compared to the prior month. In November, MFG experienced $522m in net inflows, which included retail inflows of $72m and institutional inflows of $450m.
  • Trade Me Group (TME) –1.36% The AFR reports this morning that there is speculation that Apax Partners and Hellman & Friedman could combine offers for TME. If both are satisfied at the end of due diligence, they may look to form one bid rather than compete against each other.
  • National Australia Bank (NAB) –0.99% The Australian reports this morning speculation that NAB is leaning towards sale of MLC business rather than demerger. Sources suggest that CEO Geoff Lloyd has been honest with insiders about the improvements needed to be made to MLC operations and amid Royal Commission investigations into the industry, may be more likely to divest the division. Nippon Life has been identified as a logical acquirer though sources add that they don’t believe they are interested.
  • Watpac (WTP) – Awarded $206M design and construction contract, for the Australian Catholic University’s Saint Teresa of Kolkata Building in Melbourne, including construction of a new 13 story tower. Site works to commence next month, with construction expected to complete by mid-2022.
  • LiveHire (LVH) +8.33% Has secured an enterprise agreement with DuluxGroup. The deal represents annualised recurring revenue (ARR) of more than three times the current ARR across LiveHire clients.
  • Nufarm (NUF) –0.97% Trading update at AGM. First-half underlying EBIT is expected to be weaker on year, due to increased amortisation associated with Europe acquisitions. First-half underlying EBITDA is likely to be similar to the previous corresponding period, between $500 and $530m.


  • Retail trade figures through October showed a 0.3%rise in spending for the month. September’s retail sales’ gain was revised lower to 0.1%.In seasonally adjusted terms, New South Wales was the only state or territory to fall in total retail trade, dropping 0.4% in October.

  • DEPARTMENT STORES – In current prices, the trend estimate for Department stores fell 0.1% in October 2018. The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 0.4%.
  • FOOD RETAILING – In current prices, the trend estimate for Food retailing rose 0.2% in October 2018.
  • Exports were up 1% in October to a record high of $38.05bn, mainly driven by sales of non-rural goods, in particular coal, coke and briquettes.
  • Imports rose 3% in October to a record high of $35.73bn.
  • Australia’s trade surplus narrowed to $2.32bn in October, from a revised $2.94bn in September, below market consensus of a $3.2bn surplus.


  • 2-Year bonds down 5bps to yield 1.92%
  • 5-Year yields down 10bps to yield 2.04%
  • 10-Year yields down 7bps to yield 2.46%


  • Tesla will start production in China next year.
  • Not happy Jan. China is extremely peeved that the CFO of Huawei has been arrested for sanction violations with Iran. Huawei is facing a tough time everywhere. This could turn ugly. ZTE and other Chinese electronic suppliers fall in sympathy.


  • All eyes on US futures after fat finger maybe?

  • GM sticks to its guns with factory closures. MAGA? Not.
  • Here are the crystal balls for 2019 in the US.

  • EU may throw May a lifeline to extend Article 50 after March.
  • OPEC and BREXIT on the horizon.Risks abound.

And finally…………..

A lady goes to the doctor and complains that her husband is losing interest in sex. The doctor gives her a pill, but warns her that it’s still experimental.

He tells her to slip it into his mashed potatoes at dinner, so that night, she does just that.

About a week later, she’s back at the doctor, where she says, “Doc, the pill worked great! I put it in the potatoes like you said! It wasn’t five minutes later that he jumped up, raked all the food and dishes onto the floor, grabbed me, ripped all my clothes off, and ravaged me right there on the table!”

The doctor says, “I’m sorry, we didn’t realise the pill was that strong! The foundation will be glad to pay for any damages.”

“Nah,” she says, “that’s okay. We’re never going back to that restaurant anyway.”



A wife comes home late one night and quietly opens the door to her bedroom.

From under the blanket, she sees four legs instead of just her husband’s two. She reaches for a baseball bat and starts hitting the blanket as hard as she can. Once she’s done, she goes to the kitchen to have a drink.

As she enters, she sees her husband there, reading a magazine.

He says, “Hi darling, your parents have come to visit us, so I let them stay in our bedroom. Did you say hello?”





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