BHP Billiton today posted the
biggest ever profit from a company based in Australia. On the market this morning they opened up 3%
higher and went higher again as the Mums and Dads piled in.

This profit is based on record
metals prices as well as its highly productive mines. The company described the
immediate future as “promising” and foreshadowed a A$2.72B buyback, which it
said left plenty of room to grow the business. Profits fell narrowly below the
average on analysts expectations (A$4.36B vs. $4.53B) but it hasn’t seemed to
weigh on the market.

Well done to Chip and Don but
investors should take care as Henry’s monthly Raff Report paints a less
optimistic picture for metals prices and resource

Wall Street posted a
healthy 1% hike in equity prices while bond yields rose 4 basis points, further
refuting the “Greenspan conundrum.” There were a few reasons for markets to
celebrate, but New Fed
Chief Ben Bernanke speaks tonight, and is widely expected to talk a bit tough so
it is probably too soon to break out the bubbly.

Read on at Henry

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey