The ASX 200 drops 44 points to 6709. US futures down points. Selling accelerated as the day wore on despite Fed news and ahead of crucial trade decisions and UK election. High PE stocks again the target led by PME down 3%, PAR down 12.1%, AD8 down 4.7% and PBH down 8.4%. Banks were soft as the WBC board faced an angry mob understandably baying for its blood. WBC dropped 1.2% and others followed with CBA down 0.7% and even MQG succumbing to the pitchforks down 1%. Healthcare fell lead by CSL down 1% and recent star stocks in consumer land fell slightly with WOW down 1.2% and COL down 0.7%. In the tech and bio space a number of casualties today with XRO down 1.5%, APT down 2% on another AFR article, TLS slid 2.1%, WTC dropped again by 1.6%. Miners flat lined despite encouraging signs for metals, BHP unchanged and FMG up 1.25% with Xmas at Twiggy’s looking especially good this year. REITs fell on profit taking, GMG down 1.2% and SCG down 1.6%. In corporate news ELD fell 0.5% on its AGM strike one, WBC held its AGM and the board coped it, RBL burst, down 44% on an earnings downgrade and MME +37.6% joined the boards. No economic news today as we await the trade deal deadline day. The 10-year bond was yielding 1.14% and the AUD stayed strong at 68.82c. Asian markets remain confused with Japan up 0.3% and China down 0.15%

  • ASX 200 drops 44 to 6709. Volume on low side again.
  • High 6753 Low 6701. Same range as Wednesday.
  • Banks dominated by WBC AGM. Not pretty. Board spill fails though.
  • Healthcare under pressure. TLS hit hard.
  • Growth out of favour. High PEs sold off.
  • 10-year bond yields rally to 1.09%.
  • AUD strengthens 68.82c
  • US futures down points.
  • Aussie gold down to $2142
  • Bitcoin falls to US$7152
  • Asian markets mixed with Japan up 0.30% and China down 0.15%


  • APT -2.04% SPP booklet sent top shareholders.
  • AMP -1.58% drifting off.
  • WBC -1.23% AGM fun. Second strike but not out.
  • LYC +9.72% rare earths for the military and USA pays for pilot plant.
  • TYR +7.35% rally continues.
  • PNV +4.52% starting to turn.
  • ERA +3.23% takeover panel finds issues with raising for rehab.
  • RBL -43.92% burst by earnings downgrade on competition.
  • PAR -12.14% end of year downdate.
  • AD8 -4.68% fall continues.
  • DOW -0.74%% lands water contract.
  • ASX -0.66% invests another $15m in blockchain.
  • PBH -8.41% technical selling.
  • PET +7.89% new contract win.
  • AMX +4.55% second day kick.
  • M7T +5.11% back in favour.
  • FLC +2.63% buyers return as PET rallies too.
  • JMS +4.26% manganese price rises.
  • PME -3.07% high PE stocks swoon.
  • SCP -0.37% declares dividend portfolio up 2.73%.
  • Speculative stock of the day: Money Me (MME) +37.60% IPO kicks. $45m raised, reaffirms prospectus guidance. Strong growth in fixed instalment loans. Approvals for loans in five minutes says the brochure based on AI.
  • Biggest Risers: LYC, DDR, TYR, SLR, CHC, WGX and PNV.
  • Biggest Falls: PAR, PBH, ALQ, AD8, SIG, PME and EOS.


  • Pinnacle Investment Management (PNI) – To acquire 25% of Coolabah Capital for $34.1m. $29.1m upfront with and additional $5m upon the business achieving certain operational milestones.
  • Charter Hall Long WALE REIT (CLW) – To acquire two properties for $619m, announces a $350m equity raising to help fund the transaction. FY20 operational EPS guidance upgrade to 28.3c vs prior 28.1c.
  • ResApp Health (RAP) -2.04% Receives $1.8m R&D rebate for FY19.
  • Nearmap (NEA) -0.38% To acquire technology and IP from Primitive LLC for $3.5m. The technology offers a new type of location intelligence for customers. Transaction to be funded by the $70m equity raising from September 2018.
  • Westpac (WBC) –1.23% AGM today; expects operating conditions to continue to be soft, with growth remaining low, interest rates expected to fall further, and ongoing regulatory intensity. Headwinds anticipated to weigh on performance in FY20 though some balance sheet growth is anticipated.
  • Aurizon (AZJ) -1.25% has admitted underpaying its staff in the latest corporate to come clean. According to reports, it owes $3m to 3300 staff for a payroll glitch that went undiscovered for six years.
  • Downer (DOW) -0.74% Awarded a five-year, $520m contract to plan, design and deliver water infrastructure for Logan City Council in Brisbane’s south.
  • Panoramic Resources (PAN) – Appoints Michael Ball as CFO; COO Boyd Timler to leave the company.
  • Redbubble (RBL) –43.92% Reports softer than expected sales between Oct 1 – Dec 9, citing price competition & lower apparel sales. Revenue is still up 20% YoY.
  • Elders (ELD) -0.47% Receives first strike as shareholders vote 36.4% against remuneration report.


  • Ord Minnett CEO resigns.
  • Macquarie tips BHP, FMG, CBA and SUN for capital returns in 2020.
  • ASIC has lifted ban on new active ETFs after 5 1/2 months.
  • Fitch Solutions is forecasting weaker prices for metals through 2020, paced by drops in iron ore, lead and aluminium. Only ones to rise Nickel and Gold.
  • Morrison government unveils new tech regs.



  • Central Economic Work Conference to conclude in Beijing, expecting more news on 2020 economic strategy. The official target for gross domestic product expansion will likely be lowered to “around 6%” from the “6%-6.5%” in 2020. Three main challenges for the authorities, prevent systemic risks, battle poverty and battle pollution.


  • Tonight’s the night. UK elections and Trump talks trade with advisers. Election could be closer than polls suggest. Conservative minority government?
  • Not sure what it says about Time but Greta joins Donald (2016) as Person of the Year. How dare they. Nixon was named twice in 1971 and 1972.
  • Disney is Business of the Year.
  • Turkey heading for a Xmas rate cut.
  • Aramco is close to a US$2 trillion valuation. Should do it tonight. 13% of Saudis own shares in it. Not many sellers, probably a crime.
  • JP Morgan says short gold and buy a bunch of stocks. Japanese banks, German equities and EM is the way to go apparently.
  • Weinstein reaches a US$45m settlement.
  • Israel going to the polls for third time.
  • US regulator failed to ground Boeings despite risks.

And finally

A father of six children had been out of work for six months. In desperation, he was reading through the want ads in the paper and came across an ad for someone to work at the zoo. The man called the zoo and asked if he could have the job, but was told that he would need to come in for an interview.

The next day he went to the interview, but before beginning, he was told by his potential employer that he would need to raise his hand to the square and promise that the proceedings of the interview would be kept confidential, whether he got the job or not. The man reluctantly took the oath, then asked what this job and oath were all about.

The zoo owner asked the man what he thought the zoo’s main attraction was. Without hesitation the man replied, ‘Everyone knows that. It’s the big ape!’

‘Well,’ said the zoo owner, ‘this is the part you cannot divulge, because we would lose our business. The big ape died, and we need to keep it a secret by putting the ape skin on someone who can imitate the ape–at least until the new ape arrives in three months.’ ‘That’s me!’ said the man. ‘I can do that! I was a gymnast in high school and college.’ The zoo owner then challenged the man to audition by acting like an ape. The man assumed crouched position and began running, jumping, and swinging around the room, imitating the actions and sounds of an ape. ‘Wow! You’re really good!’ said the owner, and immediately gave the man the job.

The next day the man, dressed as the ape, went into the cage and was an instant hit. Everyone heard how the ape was preforming and came to the zoo to see him. The crowds got bigger and bigger as time went by, and the front page of the paper proclaimed, ‘The ape has gone ape!’

About two months before the new ape was to arrive, the man had about five hundred people in front of his cage, and he was waxing eloquent. He was flipping and jumping and swinging everywhere, when all of a sudden, at the top of a swing, his rope broke and threw him into the lion’s cage. He rolled a few times, coming to rest against the bars, and turned to find himself across the cage from the king of beasts, who lay across the cage with his head down on one paw. He knew right way that he was in trouble, so he began screaming like an ape and running back and forth along the bars in hopes that someone would rescue him from this situation. No one moved. As he looked again, the lion began to move slowly and stalk him. The lion then growled, curled his upper lip over his teeth, and assumed a position to leap. Just at this moment, the man decided that his family was more important to him than his promise to the owner of the zoo. He looked up and started screaming, ‘Help! Help! I’m not really an ape, I’m a man. Get me out of here!’ The lion looked at him and said in a loud whisper, ‘Hush up, you fool! You’ll get us both fired!’


A man walks into the psychiatrist’s office with a zucchini up his nose, a cucumber in his left ear, and a breadstick in his right ear.
He says, “Doctor, what is wrong with me?”
The psychiatrist replies, “You are not eating properly.”




Get a Global take on things at