Australian stocks started a new week with a fall.
- S&P ASX 200: 5,515.10 -11.58 -0.21%
- All Ordinaries: 5,612.30 -13.07 -0.23%
- AUD/USD: 0.7587 -0.0041 -0.54%
The local market got off to a slow start, with big miners losing ground and the banks closing marginally weaker.
BHP lost 1.6% to close at $20.95 and Rio Tinto 1.2% to $49.20. The Commonwealth Bank was down 0.45% to $73.12 and Westpac 0.17% to $29.97.
Shares in GWA Group jumped 18% to close at $2.68 after the housing fixtures and fittings supplier moved into the black after losses last year. It posted a 15% rise in full year profit to $51.9 million.
Medibank private shares dropped 4% to $2.72 as brokers issued downgrades following last week’s profit result.
The top stories:
1. The dividend flow resumes. Fortescue posted a 210% rise in full year profits to $US985 million ($A1.3 billion), smashing analyst expectations of about $US800 million. Its shares closed 2.4% weaker at $4.81.
2. And the personal payout is pretty good as well. Forrest has more than 1 billion shares in the company he built. This means his dividend cheque for 2016 will total more than $A155 million.
3. The job cuts and wages freeze start to kick in. BlueScope doubled full year underlying profit to $293.1 million and has kept the dividends steady. Its shares were up 5.7% to close at $8.72.
4. Advertising blues. APN Outdoor posted a 49% rise in half profit to $19.5 million on a 10% rise in revenue to $150.6 million. But it downgraded full year earnings. Its shares dropped 35% to close at $5.33.
5. Where the next growth story is coming from. Seek posted another record full year profit of $348.9 million, up 27%, in a flat economy as the online jobs site looks for more opportunities. Seek shares dropped 1% to close at $16.36.
6. Consumers put their wallets away after Australia’s close federal election. Economy-wide spending in Australia flatlined in July, continuing the pattern seen since the beginning of the year.
7. The capex cliff. Australia’s unprecedented collapse in business investment, in one chart.
8. Not so rewarding for flights. Qantas frequent flyer points have been slashed in half under the new Woolworths rewards deal.
9. The Olympics. This chart shows Australia’s Oympic performance is its worst in 24 years.