The market is up 38. The SFE Futures were down 6 this morning.
The Dow closed down 6 overnight. Up 9 at best and down 56 at worst. The US 3rd Q Results season kicked off with the first major result from Alcoa after hours last night. The stock is up 5.8% in after hours trade (up 2.3% in normal trade). Result was ahead of expectations although sales were down 33%. Its JV partner Alumina is up 8c to 192.5c today. The Aussie dollar was also up to 89.10c and the Gold price help up, putting on $4.70 to $1044.
Making the news…
- Employment surge in September — an extra 40,600 jobs were created, 35,400 of those being full time. Economists were expecting 10,000 jobs to be lost and the unemployment rate to come in at 6%. The unemployment rate fell to 5.7% from 5.8%.
- Westpac Bank (WBC) announces it has lost a NZ High Court case against the Inland Revenue Department and now owes $NZ961m in taxes and interest. WBC up 8c to 2559c.
- ANZ Bank become the first bank to lift its standard variable home loans and fixed-rate loan following the RBA’s decision to lift rates on Tuesday.
- Sigma Pharmaceuticals (SIP) says its retail share offer fell short of expectations. It had hoped to raise $297m through an institutional and retail share offer. Can’t be good for the share price. SIP last traded at 103.
- Bidding war — Indian based Essar Group has launched a $144.2m bid (50c a share) for Rocklands Richfield (RCI), beating Jindal Steel and Power’s previous bid of 42c a share. RCI last traded at 41c. Both bidders are cashed up and it’s likely this will be the final offer. RCI up 1.5c to 42.5c.
- Street Talk report that private equity group Archer Capital has mandated UBS AG, GSJB Were and Bank of America/Merrill Lynch to advise on the $700m-$900m IPO for Ascendia Retail, the old Rebel Sport.
- The FIRB has told China’s Baosteel to resubmit its application to become a cornerstone shareholder in Aquila Resources (AQA). AQA up 8c to 749c.
- The AFR reports that the Babcock & Brown Infrastructure (BBI) rescue plan will be announced today.
- Transfield Services (TSE) has renewed its contract to provide maintenance services at Chevron Corp oil refineries. TSE down 1c to 424c.
- Stocks hitting fresh yearly highs today: Aditya Birla (ABY), DWS Advanced (DWS), Macquarie Airports (MAP), Seek Ltd (SEK) and WorleyParsons (WOR).
The Dow Futures are up 82 at midday.
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