The market is down 43. The SFE Futures were down 76 this morning.

The Dow Jones closed down 391 overnight after being down as much as 528 points. The Dow is now down 5.9% in two days — its biggest two day drop since Dec 2008. The Dow Jones will need to fall 485 more points (could happen even tonight) to officially enter a bear market phase. The Dow was at 12,810 on April 29. European leaders have been called on by the heads of the IMF, the World Bank, and leaders of the major economies including the US, Britain, and developing countries officials to take swift action to contain Greece’s debt crisis and  shore up European banks. Gold fell $66.40 target price $1741.70, the oil price fell $5.41 to $80.51 and the Aussie dollar is now at 97.70c from 100.67c.

Today’s main stories … quiet on the company front:

  • The ASX 200 is officially in a bear market, with a bear market being defined as a drop of at least 20% from a peak.
  • The AFR suggests now that Foster’s Group (FGL) has been bid for, Treasury Wine Estate (TWE) will be next. TWE emerged from the demerger as a debt free business with a portfolio of top brands. TWE up 4c to 355c.
  • The RBA in their bi-annual Financial Stability Review says Australia’s banks are in a much better position to withstand any global shocks than they were even in 2008.
  • According to the RBA, Westpac is looking at launching a bid for Hastings Fund Management. Westpac bought Hastings Funds Management from founder Mike Fitzpatrick in two stages. WBC down 22c to 1870c.
  • Nexus (NXS) up 16% to 14c today after falling as much as 50% yesterday on concerns it could be on its last legs.
  • Moody’s has placed Foster’s Group (FGL) on review for a possible upgrade after FGL announced that its board had accepted a $12.3 billion takeover offer by SABMiller. FGL down 1c to 252c.
  • BHP Billiton (BHP) and Rio Tinto (RIO) copping it in the neck again today – they fell 4% and 6.5% respectively yesterday. Both are down over 3% again today, no doubt on the back of Chinese manufacturing data.
  • Brickworks (BKW) reported a 12% fall in underlying FY11 EBIT to $132m. Patersons maintain their Buy recommendation and 1091c target price. BKW down 4c to 922c.
  • Standard & Poor’s has revised its outlook on South Australia to negative, from stable. They have however reaffirmed the “AAA/A-1+” rating on the state.
  • Two stocks are going ex-dividend today: Southern Cross Media (SXL) — 3c, Count Financial (COU) — 4c.
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