The market is down 6. The SFE Futures were down 9 this morning.

The Dow Jones closed up 60 overnight. Dow up 152 at best. Financials were the only S&P 500 sector to record a loss. Citigroup was down 8.2% after reporting earnings that missed estimates. They posted their lowest revenue since the GFC in 2008. This follows JPMorgan’s 18% slide in revenue reported last week. Wells Fargo was up 1.3% on in-line results. The S&P 500 rose above the 1300 level for the first time in a year but was unable to hold, closing up 0.4%. The Empire Manufacturing Index came in above expectations in January as manufacturing activity in the New York region expanded at the fastest pace in nine months. Metals were up on the LME, the oil price was up $2.24 at $100.94 and the Aussie dollar increased to 103.78c.

Main points

  • Rio Tinto (RIO) released Quarterly Production numbers yesterday after the market closed. Iron ore was the standout, beating their FY guidance by producing a record 65m tonnes, bringing the FY output to 245Mt. They had forecast output of 240 Mt. Despite the positive numbers, especially from the iron ore division, analysts are revising down their profit expectations this morning on the back of lower metal prices. Rio up 25c to 6595c.
  • Oz Minerals (OZL) said they produced 26,802 metric tons of copper and 37,814 ounces of gold from their Prominent Hill operation in the final quarter. Output for the year totaled 107,744 tons and 160,007 ounces. OZL down 1c to 1068c.
  • Wesfarmers (WES) said NZ’s earthquake last month, bush fires in QA and the hailstorm in Melbourne have led to estimated net claims expense of $28m in excess of allowances for the 6 months. WES up 5c to 3060c.
  • BHP Billiton (BHP) said the review of their diamond operation in preparation for a possible sale could continue through the 1st half of this year. BHP up 9c to 3679c.
  • Sims Metal Management (SGM) announced they will become a 20% shareholder in Chiho-Tiande Group, which is in the same industry but is listed in Hong Kong and also operates in China. SGM up 4c to 1354c.
  • David Jones (DJS) announced plans to open a new store in QLD, which they expect to generate at least $40m in sales a year. DJS up 2c to 234c.
  • Lynas Corp (LYC) has upgraded their mineral resource estimate for their Mount Weld project in WA by 37% to 23.9m metric tons. The upgrades follow an extension of the company’s drilling program at Mount Weld which was announced in September 2011. LYC up 5c to 106.5c.
  • Australian New Motor vehicle sales fell 2.9% in December compared to November.
  • Australian merchandise imports up an adjusted 1% in December

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