ASX 200 climbs 92 points to 7173 (1.3%) all-time closing high. Gains led by iron ore miners and banks. Dow Futures up 104 points.  BHP rose 3.1% with RIO up 4.6% and FMG up 7.9% also moving strongly higher on ore price records. Gold miners also doing well led by NCM up 2.8% and NST 4.2%. Base metal stocks cruising head, S32 up 2.7% and MIN up 3.7%. Energy stocks eked out small gains despite oil heading higher on US pipeline cyberattack. STO up 2.0% and WPL better by 0.7%. Banks firmed with CBA up 1.3% and the Big Bank Basket up to $176.04. ANZ ex-dividend. MQG slightly muted following numbers Friday down 0.1% with Insurers not joining in either. Industrials firm but not racing, TCL rose 2.4%, WOW rose 2.7% on demerger news and REA continued its strong run up 2.81%. Tech stocks were mixed, APT rose 2.2% and XRO up 1.7% though APX continued to fall down 5.3%, NXL remain troubled off 6.1% and ALU under pressure, down 1.2%. NEA volatile after early losses and rose 6.10% after director buying. In corporate news, A2M dropped 13.11% as it was creamed on yet another downgrade. IPL fell 8.9% after an ammonia plant update, NVX rose 11.4% on Nasdaq news and CWN was the jewel as the bidding war has broken out with merger proposals from SGR and a higher bid from Blackstone, CWN up 7.3% and SGR rising 7.7%. In economic news, Confidence and conditions hit new highs in NAB’s monthly business survey, both at their highest level since March 1997. Retail sales volumes fell 0.5% in March quarter. 10-year yields rose slightly to 1.70%. Asian markets stocks mixed on Chinese data Japan up 0.99% and China sliding 0.22%.

Today’s Highlights

  • ASX 200 up 92 to 7173 (1.3%) Record closing high
  • High 7173 Low 7076. Average volume
  • Big Bank Basket stronger at $176.04
  • All Tech Index up 0.96%
  • Dow futures up 104
  • Australian Gold steady at $2339
  • 10-year yield better at 1.70%
  • AUD rises to 78.58c
  • Bitcoin runs to US$59,265
  • Asian markets stocks mixed on Chinese data Japan up 0.99% and China sliding 0.22%


  • CWN +7.26% place your bets.
  • PLS +10.59% exceptional drilling results.
  • OBL +9.04% Brisbane class action update.
  • NVX +11.37% Nasdaq listing.
  • ABY -7.61% MS downgrades.
  • SGR +7.67% offer for CWN.
  • BET +5.17% podcast cheers.
  • NST +4.23% restructure of Tanami JV.
  • EM2 -9.13% Emilia scout drilling returns high grade silver.
  • ONE +18.33% Langone webinar.
  • POD +16.28% low volume but strength from Rhodium and Iridium ann.
  • PGC +14.29% business update.
  • A2M -13.11% sours on another downgrade.
  • TPG -4.60% soggy yet again.
  • IPL -8.92% Wagamama plant update.
  • DW8 -16.00% business update.
  • WBT -5.91% Appendix 2A.
  • NXL -6.13% heading down still.
  • APX -5.29% negative pile on continues.
  • MYD -5.43% mini TPW heads down.
  • Speculative Stock of the Day: Great Boulder Resources (GBR) +9.09% solid volume. Last week’s exceptional gold grades at Mulga Bill continue to attract attention.
  • Biggest Winners: NVX, PLS, OBL, SKO, FMG, SFR and SGR.
  • Biggest Losers: ABR, A2M, IPL< SM1, LTR, NXL, APX and BCK.


  • Cleanaway Waste Management (CWY) +1.79% Appoint Mark Schubert as CEO and Managing Director,joins Cleanaway from Origin Energy where he has served as Executive General Manager, Integrated Gas for the past four years.
  • PointsBet Holdings (PBH) +0.22% Acquires Premier Turf Club for US$2.9m.
  • Woolworths Group (WOW) +2.74% To demerge Endeavour Group. Eligible shareholders will receive one new Endeavour Group share for every Woolworths Group share held. Following completion of the demerger, Woolworths will consider capital management options with $1.6-2.0bn that could be returned to shareholders. Endeavour Group intends to follow Woolworths Group’s dividend policy, which is initially expected to deliver a payout ratio of 70-75% of profit.
  • a2 Milk Co. (A2M) -13.11% Expects FY21 revenue NZ$1.20-1.25bn vs prior NZ$1.4bn.EBITDA to sales margin 11-12% vs prior 24-26% reflecting: lower than expected sales, a stock provision of ~NZ$80-90m which is in addition to the NZ$23m stock provision recognised in 1H21 and one-off costs of approximately NZ$8m associated with the implementation of the company’s new cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. Management comments, “most of the actions that we are taking are non-cash in nature with the result that Company’s balance sheet will remain strong, and we would expect to see improved performance during FY22. Specifically, it is estimated that if the one-off charges and sales reductions to reduce inventory in the trade were backed out for this year, the business would record annual revenues in the order of NZ$1.3bn with an EBITDA margin percent in the low to mid-twenties.
  • Perenti Global (PRN) +1.51% Chairman Ian Cochrane to step down from Board effective immediately due to health reasons.
  • Crown Resorts (CWN)+7.26% Received revised proposal from Blackstone of 1235c/share. An increase of 50c cash per share (or 4%) to the previous offer of 1185c. Crown also receives a bid from Star Entertainment of a nil-premium share exchange ratio of 2.68 Star shares for each Crown share. Based on recent trading values of The Star and the value that would be unlocked by a merger, The Star estimates its pro forma share price to be more than 500c per share implying a potential value of the Scrip Consideration in excess of 1400c per Crown share. The Proposal also includes a cash alternative of 1250c per Crown share for up to 25% of Crown’s issued share capital (with any scale back to occur on a pro rata basis). Crown appoints outgoing Lendlease CEO Steve McCann as CEO and MD.
  • Pendal Group (PDL) – First half underlying profit $82.6m vs consensus $84m. Fee Revenue $277m vs consensus $277.8m. Dividend 17.0cps vs year-ago 15.0cps. Average funds under management $97.1bn. To acquire US-based Thompson, Siegel & Walmsley LLC for $413m. To raise $190m (Placement) through the issue of 27.9M new fully paid shares a 680c. Will also undertake a Share Purchase Plan (SPP).
  • Incitec Pivot (IPL) -8.92% Update on Waggaman operations; repairs and re-start are expected to take two to three weeks. The additional impact to FY21 EBIT from the initial trip to the expected re-start of the plant is estimated to be $33m-$42m. In all other respects, IPL’s business performance remains in line with the updates provided on 15-Feb and 6-Apr-21.


  • NAB Business survey April: Conditions: +32, up from +24; Confidence: +26, up from +17 – both at the highest level since March 1997. The gain in the month was driven by large increases in mining and the services sectors with finance, business & property now the strongest non-mining industry.

Retail sales data

  • Rose 1.3% month-on-month.
  • Rose 2.2% compared with March 2020.
  • In volume terms, the seasonally adjusted estimate fell 0.5% in the March quarter 2021.
  • Australian retail turnover rose 1.3% in March, down slightly on the preliminary result of 1.4%, following a fall of 0.8% in February 2021.
  • Online sales made up 9.4% of total retail sales in March. Online contributed to 7.1% of total retail sales in March 2020.
  • Iron ore booms


  • Vaccine Tracker: 1.29bn doses in 174 countries. 20.8m a day. In US, 260m doses and 2.02m a day. At this pace in America, it will take another 4 months to cover 75% of the population. In Australia, it will take another 20 months to cover 75% of the population.
  • U.S. deaths from Covid-19 have been undercounted, President Joe Biden’s top medical adviser said, with the nationwide toll approaching 582,000.
  • India added 366,161 more cases Monday, lower than the 400,000-odd numbers it reported Sunday.



  • Support for Japanese PM Suga is now at an all-time low. Nearly 60% of respondents in a Yomiuri poll over the weekend said the games should be cancelled.
  • Only 2.4% of Japan’s about 126m people have received at least one dose of vaccine so far, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
  • Shanghai Fosun said on Sunday it will set up a 50:50 joint venture with BioNTech to produce mRNA Covid-19 vaccine in China.


  • European stocks looking for a firm open.
  • Colonial Pipeline still affected by cyber attack from criminal gang. US enacts emergency powers to keep oil flowing.
  • Musk tanks on SNL. Calls Dogecoin a ‘Hustle’.
  • UK next stage of lifting restrictions confirmed for May 17th. More than a third of the United Kingdom’s adult population is now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, and two-thirds of adults have received a first shot.

And finally…