The market is up 41. The SFE Futures were down 37 this morning.

Wall Street closed down 115 overnight. The Dow was up 50 at best and down 122 at worst. US markets hit their lowest level since November 4 last year. It has been the worst two day fall since March.

In other news today…

  • NSW BUDGET: The NSW government is forecasting an operating surplus of $773m for the fiscal year starting July 1. Net debt stands at $12.23bn in 2010/11.
  • Newcrest Mining (NCM) has completed due diligence for their proposed takeover of Lihir Gold (LGL). They are now working together to complete a scheme of arrangement under which NCM will acquire LGL. NCM up 2.8% to 3317c and LGL up 8c to 408c.
  • Healthscope (HSP) down 9c to 540c – US-based Tenet Healthcare has withdrawn their bid to buy HSP. They are “unable to convey to shareholders the potential value, including the inherent risks and opportunities” of the transaction.
  • Tabcorp (TAH) considering revised plans for its $65m entertainment centre at its Star City Casino in Sydney after an application for 1000 additional poker machines to fund the project was rejected by Premier Kristina Keneally.
  • Toll Holdings (TOL) has announced a profit warning this morning as well as an acquisition. They expect before tax profit in the 6 months to June 30 to be up 5-10% from a year earlier which one broker calculated to be a 7% downgrade. They are also buying the DPAX Group from Qantas (QAN) for an undisclosed price. TOL down 3c to 567c after hitting a low of 539c.
  • Karoon Gas (KAR) is considering a separate stock exchange listing for its Brazilian and Peruvian assets whose value, KAR says, is not reflected in its market cap. The Brazilian stock exchange is the likely exchange of choice. KAR up 2.77% to 742c.
  • The Chairman of Downer EDI buys 100,000 shares at 457c in a vote of confidence on the stock post last week’s profits warning. Now 462c down from 631c pre warning. Chairman Peter Jollie has lifted his stake to 5.6% or 189,667 shares from 89,667 shares.
  • Elders (ELD) hits a fresh multi-decade low of 91c. They have been unable to finalise an agreement with Rural Bank to provide finance for investors in their Forestry unit.
  • RBA board member Jillian Broadbent says the outlook for the Australian economy remains positive despite concerns in Europe, mainly thanks to our strong mining industry.
  • Stocks hitting fresh 52 week lows include:     Eldorado Gold (EAU), Iluka Resources (ILU), Nido Petroleum (NDO) and Silver Lake Resources (SLR). Stocks hitting fresh yearly high include: Blue Energy (BUL), Elders (ELD), Rivercity Mototway (RCY) and Toll Holdings (TOL).

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