ASX 200 finished the week on a solid note up 28 points to 7284(+0.4%) as both banks and resources rallied. Fourth week of losses though. The Big Bank Basket rose to $172.48 (+0.7%). CBA bounced 0.7% and NAB in demand up 1.1%. MQG a more modest 0.3% with insurers easier and fund managers mixed. MFG up 1.1% and PTM down 0.8%. Industrials were better with REITs losing some ground as 10-year yields hit 3.9%, Tech up slightly with WTC up 0.7% and XRO up 0.5%. Healthcare better CSL up 0.4% and RMD doing well up 1.5%. Staples better and TLS doing well up 1.2%. In the resources, BHP continues higher, up 0.6%, RIO up 1.6% and FMG missing the memo down 1.3%. Gold miners eased and rare earths under pressure following the Tesla day and their new motors being rare earth free. Lithium stocks a little mixed, PLS up 2.5% recovering after div and IGO down 0.4%. Oil and gas better, WDS up 0.5% and STO up 1.3%. In corporate news, not much, DOW chair has thrown in the towel, QAN announced it wanted to hire back all the pilots and engineers it lost in Covid. Down 0.3% after news. In economic news, first-home buyer loans hit the lowest level since February 2017. Asian markets better, Japan up 1.2%, China up 0.3% and HK up 0.8%. Dow futures down 23 points. NASDAQ futures down 26 points.
- Winners: LTR, RNU, RMS, MAF, TUA, ABB, NWL
- Losers: ARU, SLX, PPH, WBT, ALD, 29M, JIN
- Positive sectors: Resources. Healthcare. Industrials. Banks.
- Negative sectors: Gold miners. REITs.
- High 7154 Low 7120 Narrow range.
- Big Bank Basket: Nice finish to $172.48 up 0.7%
- All-Tech index: Unchanged.
- Gold higher to $2726
- Bitcoin: Collapses to US$22,370
- Aussie Dollar: Steady at 67.44c
- 10-Year Yield: Higher to 3.90%.
- Asian markets: Asian markets better, Japan up 1.2%, China up 0.3% and HK up 0.8%
- US Futures: Dow down 32 Nasdaq down 27
- LTR +13.19% big move. Good volume too. Its on?
- ADT +3.36% base metal catch ups.
- INR +1.43% lithium volatility.
- ABB +4.98% broker research.
- ASO +23.81% drawing strength from recent investor presentation.
- ALD -5.77% ex dividend.
- SYR -3.87% AGM nominations.
- ARU -10.69% Tesla Investor day with move away from REE.
- WBT -6.10% Newton’s law take effect.
- SLX -8.60% $100m raised and weighing badly.
- MEI -16.00% dives back to earth.
- RFG -8.24% cap raise weighs.
- KSL -7.45% ex dividend.
- PPH -6.54% reinstatement to quotation.
- Speculative Stock of the Day: IntelliHR (IHR) +30.23% after a new bid from TAG at 14c.
- Above Average Volumes: MCE, HSC, VPT, CLU, AAU
- Grant Samuel has given the green light to BHP’s $9.6bn bid for OZ Minerals (OZL). Offer fair and reasonable.
- Qantas (QAN) – Plans to hire 2,300 more staff in the next 18 months to refill thousands of roles that were cut during the pandemic. The airline plans to increase its headcount by up to 8,500 over the next decade.
- Mineral Resources (MIN) has extended its offer to buy the remaining shares of Norwest (NWE) until March 16, with a final offer of one Mineral Resources share for every 1,300 Norwest shares.
- Centuria Industrial REIT (CIP) – Announced the settlement of its $300m exchangeable notes offering due 2028, which are guaranteed at 3.95%. The notes are expected to be listed on the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited.
- Imugene (IMU) – Announces that the first patients have been dosed with Phase 1 cancer–killing virus.
- Nickel Industries (NIC) has raised $35m through an oversubscribed share purchase plan, exceeding its initial target of up to $30m. The shares were sold at 102c each.
- IntelliHR (IHR) – Private equity backed software business The Access Group (TAG) has lobbed a 14c a share bid beating rival bidder Humanforce’s 11c a share offer.
ECONOMICS & OTHER NEWS
- According to ABS data, the number of new owner-occupier first home buyer loan commitments fell to its lowest level since February 2017.
In January 2023 in seasonally adjusted terms, the value of new loan commitments:
- for total housing fell 5.3% to $22.1b, after a fall of 4.3% in December. It was 35.0% lower compared to a year ago.
- for owner-occupier housing fell 4.9% to $14.7b and was 35.1% lower compared to a year ago
- for investor housing fell 6.0% to $7.4b and was 34.8% lower compared to a year ago
All but one of 28 economists polled by Reuters agree that the RBA will raise rates next week by 25bps. Standard Chartered predicts a 15bps move. More than one-third of the analysts, 10 of 28, polled by Reuters, predict rates to peak at 4.1% next quarter. One economist has a terminal rate of 4.35% in the third quarter.
- ANZ estimates the size of USD-declared mining dividends at US$11.7bn (equivalent to around $17bn in Australian dollars) this reporting season, well below the record set in August to September quarter last year.
- ACCC has granted interim authorisation to Qantas and Jetstar Airways to continue two Jetstar Asian-based joint ventures.
- Tencent boss Pony Ma left out of China’s signature political gathering.
- Big weekend of party conferences in China. NPC this weekend.
- Chinese Caixin services PMI up to 55 v Jan at 52.9. GDP ambitious targets to come.
US AND EUROPEAN HEADLINES
- A Fed speech about to be given by Reserve Governor Christopher Waller had to be cancelled due to a technical issue. The Zoom conference was hacked to display porn material.
- Mortgage rates in the US increased this past week. With the average for a 30-year, fixed loan was 6.65%, up from 6.5% last week.
- Zoom abruptly terminated the employment of President Greg Tomb, a former Google executive who had only started at the videoconferencing company in June.
- Bitcoin dropped to the lowest level in about two weeks, as digital currencies fell hard on the after Crypto bank Silvergate plunged after warning on ability to survive as a going concern.
- US investment firm GQG invests $1.9bn in Adani companies.
- Abu Dhabi’s main oil company Adnoc, raised $2.5bn from the initial public offering of its gas business, pulling off the year’s biggest IPO. It sold 3.84bn shares or a 5% stake.
- Interesting to hear Elon Musk say that everyone wants a Tesla but the issue is price it is not demand. I think the same can be said about a Ferrari or a GT3.