ASX 200 once again reversed early gains to slip 61 points (0.9%) to 6738. Dow futures up 53 points. After a solid opening, sellers moved in as Brisbane confirmed new CV19 cases and now NSW on alert. Big iron ore plays flopped with BHP down 2.1% and FMG off 2.3%. Gold miners too saw selling pressure led by NCM down 1.3% and NST off 2.7%. Energy stocks flatlined despite gains in crude and STO approving a large LNG project. STO down 1.1% and WPL down 1.4%. Base metal stocks mixed, LYC up 1.3% and OZL down 3.3%. Big banks were mixed but pretty flat with the Big Bank Basket steady as she goes around $163.77. Insurers fell with QBE off 1.0% and IAG down 1.9%. Industrials had few stand outs CSL fell 1.0% on speculation of an acquisition and capital raise, ALL dropped 2.6% though we saw some buying in tech stocks after some days of falls. APT down 0.4% and XRO up 2.2%. The All- Tech Index down 0.3%. Incorporate news, CSX dropped like a lead balloon down 55.2% on a disappointing business update as vaccines take away the need for PPE. The AFR held its Banking Summit today, Wayne Byres from APRA gave a star turn saying he was not bothered or responsible for house prices but outlined the key metrics regulators will focus on to determine if risk levels are bubbling over as property prices surge. In economic news, we had weekly payrolls data, the 10-year yield jumped to 1.77% again signalling more pressure on growth stocks perhaps. Asian markets slightly higher with China up 1.0% and Japan flat.

Today’s Highlights

  • ASX 200 down 61 to 6738. Closing on lows.
  • High 6836 Low 6738. End of quarter beckons.
  • Big Bank Basket fell slightly to $163.77.
  • European market expected to open up firmly.
  • All Tech Index down 0.3%
  • Dow futures up 53.
  • Gold slips to $2232.
  • 10-year yield rising to 1.77% ahead of Biden infrastructure spending.
  • AUD firms to 76.52c
  • Bitcoin stronger at US$57387
  • Asian markets slightly higher with China up 1.0% and Japan flat.


  • AGL -3.54% heading for a divorce.
  • AKP +7.30% positive news on wafers. No volume to speak of.
  • JLG +3.12% flood winner.
  • PBH -9.25% continued profit taking.
  • ART -8.65% froth being knocked off.
  • SPL -6.22% VIRALEZE launched by Lloyds Pharmacy in UK.
  • CSX -55.19% business update. Demand dropping for respiratory protection equipment.
  • AYS -31.73% Ex Dividend and Ex Capital return.
  • ONE -9.38% selling resumes.
  • DW8 +10.34% WINEDEPOT partners with Bibiendum.
  • OPY – capital raise at 203c.
  • 4DX -8.12% end of SPP disappoints.
  • TLS +1.18% broker upgrade.
  • Speculative Stock of the Day: Byrah Resources (BYH) +18.64% Bonanza gold grades at Gabanintha.
  • Biggest Winners: ECX, LTR, IAP, IMU, PAR, BFG, SPK and JMS.
  • Biggest Losers: INR, PBH, ART, CRN, RSG, SPL, BET, WPP and SLR.


  • Woolworths Group (WOW) -0.47% Leaning towards demerger or IPO of Endeavor Drinks around 28-Jun – The Australian.Santos (STO) -1.11% To proceed with US$3.6bn Barossa gas project.
  • Tabcorp Holdings (TAH) -1,49% Matthew Tripp aiming to merge spun-off Tabcorp wagering division with Betmakers Technology (BET) – The Australian.
  • AGL Energy (AGL) -3.54% Outlines structural separation in investor day presentation; to create two separate businesses called New AGL and PrimeCo. Financial update: Operating cost reduction of $150m being executed. Plans for $100m in sustaining capex reductions are accelerated. Assets identified for sale in FY22 are valued at $400m, including Newcastle Gas Storage Facility, Silver Springs gas project.


Weekly Payroll Jobs and wages in Australia

Between the weeks ending 27 February and 13 March 2021, payroll jobs increased 0.2%. The largest changes were in:

  • Western Australia and the Northern Territory (both up 0.7%)
  • Agriculture, forestry and fishing (down 3.2%)
  • Total wages decreased by 1.0%. The largest changes were in:
  • Western Australia (up 2.7%)
  • Mining (up 11.1%)


  • Between the weeks ending 14 March 2020 and 13 March 2021:
  • Payroll jobs increased by 0.2%
  • Total wages increased by 1.4%


  • Vaccine Tracker: 559m doses in 141 countries. 14.5m doses a day. 146m in US at an average of 2.76m a day.
  • In the US, the seven-day average for new daily Covid-19 cases is now almost at 60,000, up 10% from the prior week. Hospitalizations are also up, to about 4,800 a day from 4,600 a week earlier.
  • Canada has halted AstraZeneca vaccines for under 55s on clot concerns.



  • ByteDance (TikTiok) is trading with a US$250bn valuation according to the grey market. Big jump from last funding round at US$140bn valuation.
  • China’s parliament approves the new electoral changes for HK.


  • Facebook and Google will fund an undersea cable from Singapore to US.
  • Arch Egos Capital Management (there’s an oxymoron for you) says ‘all plans are being discussed’.
  • Prime brokers discussed managing positions collectively. Reports potential US$6bn in losses.
  • Looks like Goldmans and MS have escaped with Nomura and CS holding the can.
  • Focus switching to Biden’s infrastructure plan. And the tax increases to pay for it.
  • CDC warns of impending doom if US lets its guard down now.
  • US companies sounding alarm on inflation as costs are rising.
  • Used car retailer Cazoo to list in New York with US$8bn valuation.
  • Volkswagen to change its name in the US to ‘Voltswagen’.

And finally…

  1. Why did the scarecrow win an award? Because he was outstanding in his field.
  2. Why did the melon jump into the lake? It wanted to be a water-melon.
  3. What did the duck say when it bought lipstick? “Put it on my bill.”
  4.  What do you call a pig that does karate? A pork chop.
  5. What has a bed that you can’t sleep in? A river.
  6. Why were the teacher’s eyes crossed? She couldn’t control her pupils.
  7. What starts with E, ends with E, and has only 1 letter in it? An Envelope.
  8. How does the ocean say hello? It waves.
  9. What lights up a soccer stadium? A soccer match.
  10. What creature is smarter than a talking parrot? A spelling bee.