The ASX 200 crunched 57 points to 7390 (0.8%) as banks stumble lower. The Big Bank Basket fell to $180.67 down 1.2%. CBA led the rout with a loss of 1.5%. WBC fell 0.7% and MQG dropped 1.4%. MFG bucked the trend with a small gain of 2.7%. Insurers dropped with QBE down 1.3% as 10-year yields eased back to 1.89%. Healthcare also fell led lower by CSL down 0.7% and SHL off 0.6%. Industrials too succumbed to the selling pressure, COL down 2.5%, WOW down 2.1% and WES off 1.4%. TLS fell 1.0% and REITS on the nose despite some relief on yields. Tech held firm just but sense that the selling will kick back in, APT up 1.7% though XRO fell 1.0% and WTC falling 0.7%. The All–Tech Index down 0.7%. Mining stocks still the place to be. FMG up 2.3% and RIO doing better with gold miners slightly firmer, NCM up 0.8% and NST rallying 1.8%. Lithium stocks came off the boil with the exception of CXO which powered ahead 8.6%. In corporate news, PNV rose 25.2% after good US sales but patchy sales elsewhere. PBH rose 3.5% after news of NY operations, ING fell 6.0% after warning of the impact from omicron. Plenty of economic news around, retail sales soared in November but have probably crashed since, a fourth straight decline in the trade balance and consumer confidence fell 2.2%. Bond yields eased back, and Asian markets mixed. HK better but elsewhere Japan and China eased.
- Winners: PNV, SYR, CXO, MGX, BRN, SZL, AWC, RRL, ADT.
- Losers: ARB, NVX, CCX, ING, MHJ, PAN, PME, LOV.
- Positive sectors: Gold miners. Iron ore.
- Negative sectors: Industrials. Banks. REITs. Tech. Healthcare.
- Hi 7441 Lo 7377
- Big Bank Basket: Falls to $180.67 (1.2%)
- All-Tech index down 0.7%
- Gold: Rises to $2511.
- Bitcoin: Steady at lower levels at US$42,260.
- Aussie Dollar: Steady at 71.88c 10-YEAR YIELD: Falls to 1.89%.
- Asian Markets: Japan down 0.8% Hong Kong up 0.4% and China down 0.3%.
- US Futures: Dow futures down 14 points. Nasdaq down 10 points.
STOCKS ON THE MOVE
- PNV +25.17% good US numbers and short squeeze.
- CXO +8.59% lithium producer to be gathers attention.
- SYR +9.43% graphite play doing well.
- ADT +3.61% base metal exposure in Bosnia.
- BRN +4.85% ASX speeding ticket fails to dent enthusiasm.
- PBH +3.54% NU operations due to kick off.
- VMT +9.52% profit guidance.
- CTM +14.86% recent trading debut in US helping.
- ARB -12.31% broker downgrade.
- NVX -8.69% reversing yesterday’s gain.
- ING -5.95% love ‘em. Not. Omicron impacts.
- PAN -5.26% profit taking.
- PME -5.17% slide continues.
- BOC -7.58% miniscule volume.
- RNU -7.14% profit taking.
- SDI -8.25% trading update.
- Speculative Stock of the Day: Only thing of vague interest on volume, Middle Island Resources (MDI) +28.00%. Yesterday the company announced IP survey had defined highly prospective targets.
IN THE NEWS
- Rio Tinto (RIO) to purchase four battery-electric trains for use in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
- BHP (BHP) to pay up to US$100m on a nickel and cobalt play in Tanzania. The move expands its push into future-facing commodities. BHP has not been active in Africa since it spun off South32 in 2015.
- PointsBet (PBH) expects to launch operations in New York by the end of January.
- Inghams Group (ING) says staff shortages from Omicron have disrupted sales and feed costs remain elevated. ING said it would add more colour when it releases half-year results on February 18.
- Polynovo (PNV) unaudited 1H22 total sales (ex Barda) $16.3m, up 45% vs year ago. US sales for December (ex Barda) $3.4m up 76% vs year ago. Monthly US sales for December significantly exceeded US$2m for the first time although said its results outside the US had been “patchy”.
ECONOMIC NEWS/ BOND MARKETS
- Retail turnover rose 7.3% in November beating consensus of a 5.7% rise. The increase is the fourth strongest monthly rise in the series with retail sales now at their highest level ever recorded, up 5.5% on the previous record set in November 2020.
- A trade surplus of $9.423bn was recorded in November, $1.358bn less than October. The fourth straight decline.
- Weekly consumer confidence has started the year on a soft footing, down 2.2%. The rapid lift in case numbers the likely culprit. Confidence fell in all the major capitals, with Adelaide faring the worst. ANZ’s David Plank said “the good news is that people are still relatively happy about their own financial circumstances. This potentially sets things up for a rapid rebound once people are more confident about health outcomes.”
- Air passengers from Group A, or designated high-risk countries, are set to be banned from transiting through Hong Kong International Airport.
- China reported 110 locally transmitted infections, with central Henan province becoming the latest epicentre after detecting 87 new cases.
- China is rolling out the use of its digital yuan in time for the Olympics as athletes and other foreigners will be able to use the virtual currency instead of cash. Visa will also be accepted. It is a sponsor after all.
- Chinese education group New Oriental has fired 60,000 workers.
US AND EUROPEAN NEWS
- Jerome Powell Fed chief confirmation kicks off today.
- Cryptocurrency investors lost almost $US3 billion ($4.2bn) last year in an emerging scam known as the “rug pull”.
- Fed’s Richard Clarida has resigned early after the trading scandal last year.
- Russia and US agree to continue to talk on Ukraine but no breakthroughs.
- Boris Johnson accused of a attending a BYO party during lockdown.
- Take Two is buying Zynga in a US$12.7bn deal.
- Jeremy Clarkson has had his plans to turn his farm produce shop into a restaurant knocked back by the local council. Called it a Trojan Horse.