ASX 200 up 24 to 7563 (0.3%)

  • HIGH 7576 LOW 7537 Narrow range and below average volumes.




  • POSITIVE SECTORS: Banks. Insurers.Tech. Lithium stocks.
  • NEGATIVE SECTORS: Miners. Gold.
  • BIG BANK BASKET: Better at $187.99
  • ALL -TECH INDEX: Up 1.6%. APT up 3.2%
  • GOLD: Slips to AUD $2366.
  • BITCOIN: US$45702. Heading higher.
  • AUD: Weaker at 73.27c. 10-YEAR YIELD: Steady at 1.20%
  • ASIAN MARKETS: Tokyo up 0.15% Hong Kong up 0.3%, China down 0.15%.
  • US FUTURES: Dow futures down 20. NASDAQ down 18

ASX 200 finished up 24 points at 7563 (0.3%) another record close despite case numbers exploding in Sydney and no end to the lockdown in sight. Banks were excited as the day of reckoning dawns tomorrow for CBA with its results. The Big Bank Basket rose to $187.99 with other financials slightly muted, Healthcare muted as CSL dropped 0.6% and miners soft on iron ore and other commodity weakness although lithium stocks were in the spotlight following a very positive deal for NVX up 15.6% and a research report splattered all over the AFR on buy anything that had any exposure to lithium. Inevitably they did. PLS up 11.0% and the GXY/ORE combo up 8.7%. Gold miners continued to be pressured by falling bullion prices as the USD strengthens on taper talk. Industrials firmed on the JHX results and TLS is back with a 0.8% gain on news of 5G auctions. Tech stocks were better with APT following Square higher and the AllTech Index rose1.6%. Really only two stocks XRO and APT. Results continue with CGF up 1.9% on its results and yet another CEO biting the dust. On the economic front, ANZ RoyMorgan consumer confidence fell 3.1% last week as new lockdowns were announced in parts of Queensland and Victoria.


  • NVX +15.56% getting its kicks from Phillips 66.
  • PLS +10.95% ORE +8.74% GXY +8.61% JP Morgan goes all in.
  • PBH +9.86% ceasing to be a substantial shareholder. Draftkings deal helping.
  • 360 +4.03% heading stateside?
  • VUL +6.94% lithium stocks in demand.
  • RMS -5.90% SBM -4.96% WGX -4.03% gold bullion falls.
  • MMM -2.93% fails to deliver.
  • CIA -2.81% iron ore price falls.
  • KED -2.43% EVO -% online education under pressure bounces at close.
  • 4DX -4.14% profit taking
  • AXE +12.94% South Korean patent.
  • CGF +1.90% results and CEO exit.
  • AGY +17.86% lithium rally.
  • EMV +13.69% 1st machine is ready.
  • Speculative Stock of the Day: PBHR +41.96% not really a stock more a derivative but volatility and gearing to the PBH share price. DraftKing news helps.


  • BHP Group (BHP) +0.14% Peabody Energy is understood to be eyeing off BHP’s $2bn coal mining assets.
  • NOVONIX Limited (NVX) +15.56% Phillips 66 to acquire a 16% stake in NONONIX Limited US $150m. NVX develops and supplies in-demand materials for lithium-ion batteries. Phillips 66 will also nominate one director to NOVONIX’s board.
  • James Hardie Industries (JHX) +2.90% Q1 adjusted profit US$134.2m vs consensus US$128.8m.Revenue US$843.3m vs consensus $774.9m. EBIT US$180.5m vs US$173.4m. Upgrades FY22 adjusted profit guidance to US$550-590m vs prior guidance US$520-570M.
  • Challenger (CGF) +1.90% Full-year normalised profit before tax $396m vs guidance at bottom end of the $390-440m range and consensus of $406m. Assets under management $110.0bn vs year-ago $85.2bn. Final dividend 10.5c/share, fully franked. In FY22, expects strong profit growth, with a normalised net profit before tax of between $430m and $480m, with a mid-point of $455m, which represents 15% growth on this year. Will target a dividend payout ratio of between 45% to 50% of normalised net profit before tax. CEO Richard Howes to step down in March.
  • Megaport (MP1) +3.05% Reports Full-year net profit of -$55.0, missing consensus which was -$38.6m. Normalised EBITDA -$13.3m vs consensus -$17.5m, Revenue $78.3m vs consensus $78.5m. Total Operating expenditure $55.4m vs year-ago $50.6m.
  • Slater & Gordon (SGH) -unchanged – CFO Scott Butterworth to step down.
  • Spark Infrastructure Group (SKI) – unchanged- To engage with OTPP and KKR following their revised proposal of 295c. Grants due diligence.
  • Nuix (NXL) +1.15% provides ASIC update, notes it has not received any formal notification of an investigation from ASIC and remains confident that it has complied with its accounting and disclosure obligations.



  • Business conditions declined 14pts to +11 index points but remains above the 6pt long-run average. Business confidence saw a large fall of 19pts to -8 index points and is now well below average. The survey continues to show widespread impacts of lockdowns.
  • ANZ Roy-Morgan consumer confidence fell 3.1% last week as new lockdowns were announced in parts of Queensland and Victoria.


  • Dr Kerry Chant says they underestimated the virus spread in western Sydney.
  • Researchers asked U.S. regulators to pull some sunscreens from the market, including brands such as Coppertone, Banana Boat and Neutrogena, saying they’ve found evidence of a potential carcinogen.
  • The price of arabica beans has risen 50% in the last year.


  • Dr Fauci has said that booster shots should be given pretty soon to those with compromised immune systems.
  • Deaths in Iran have reached 500 per day for the first time in the pandemic, while fatalities in Russia hit 787 people dying from coronavirus in the past 24 hours and infections in Malaysia hover near record highs.
  • Germany reported 3,127 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday.
  • The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival was cancelled for a second year because of Covid-19.
  • A third of Israeli adults over the age of 60 have already received a coronavirus booster shot.


  • Softbank earnings due.
  • Krafton has fallen on its IPO debut in South Korea. Raised US$3.8bn now down around 11% below the issue price. One trick pony. Something called PUBG I am told.


  • European market expected to open slightly lower.
  • UN issues a Code Red for the Climate Crisis. You can’t handle the truth!
  • US Senate said to pass its US$1 trillion infrastructure bill. McDonalds facing an antitrust probe in Italy. Fine could be as large as 10% of global turnover. That is a lot of unhappy Meals.
  • China and Russia are conducting joint military exercises.
  • DraftKings is buying Golden Nugget Online in a US$1.56bn deal.
  • Cargill and Continental Grain buy Sanderson Farms for US$4.53bn. Sanderson is chicken.

And finally….