The market is up 84. The SFE Futures suggested a 63 point rise in the market this morning. Our market is up following a 220 point rise on Wall St since we closed on Thursday. Financials up after a strong session in the sector on Wall Street overnight and on Thursday — all the banks up 3 to 4% this morning.

The Dow was down 25. Up 29 at best. Down 120 at worst. Markets had a shaky start Monday after Thursday’s solid gains. Goldman Sachs was the main driver among financials posting better-than-expected quarterly earnings after the close. BHP and RIO both up — 3.76% and 3.95% respectively. Metals all up. Oil price down 3.9%. Gold up $12.50. A$/US$ up.

Qantas Airways (QAN) announced a profit warning — downgrades profit sharply by about 70% to between $100m-$200m from a previous forecast of $500m — will cut capacity, jobs and aircraft orders much more than expected. Said it won’t withdraw any routes but will reduce frequencies.

  • OZ Minerals (OZL) signed an implementation agreement with Minmetals for $1.21bn — excludes Prominent Hill and Martable assets – they hope the deal will be completed by late June. Expects to retain $500m after the Minmetals deal — previous estimate for cash in hand after the deal was $600m — said the difference is due to currency movements.
  • OneSteel (OST) in a trading halt pending the announcement of their financial outlook. Likely to make more output cuts.
  • IBA Healthcare (IBA) raises $123.6m via an entitlement offer.
  • Avoca Resources (AVO) announce a $49m scrip offer for Dioro Exploration NL (DIO) — 1 share for every 2.82 Dioro shares, valuing Dioro at $0.53 per share. The bid represents a premium of about 34.2% on the last close price.
  • Nexus Energy (NXS) extend their voluntary suspension whilst continuing financial package talks with various parties.
  • Cockatoo Coal (COK) announce Bowen South Project JORC indicated resources of 15.6MT.

Other…

  • The NAB’s Business Survey showed business confidence and overall conditions improved from February. Confidence up 9 points to negative 13 — business conditions up 3 points to negative 17.
  • JP Morgan cuts Orica’s (ORI) FY09-11 NPAT forecasts by 5%, 4% and 5% and drops their price target to 1865c from 1890c reflecting the lower estimates for ORI’s Minova and chemicals unit. Keeps NEUTRAL recommendation.
  • RBS upgrade Arrow Energy (AOE) to a BUY from Hold, but cut price target from 314c to 291c — says flowrates from AOE’s CSG fields in QLD have been relatively weak.
  • JP Morgan upgrades Newcrest (NCM) and Lihir Gold (LGL) to OVERWEIGHT from Neutral. Lift their long term gold price for 2009 by 15.3% and lift their long term gold price forecast to US$850 per ounce. Cut recommendations on Energy Resources (ERA), Iluka (ILU), and Centennial Coal (CEY).

The Dow Futures suggest a 44 point fall on Wall Street.

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