The market is down 36. The SFE Futures were down 20 this morning.

The Dow closed down 76 after investors continued to react anxiously to political events unfolding in Greece. There is concern that the Greeks will reject the bailout that saved it from a bankruptcy as a Leftist politician is seeking to form government two days after elections. Greek stocks fell 3.62% after falling by 6.67% on Monday, they are now at the same level last seen 20 years ago. The S&P 500 was taken lower for the fourth time in five trading days, falling 0.43%. The biggest decliners on were Basic Materials -0.9%, Consumer Services -0.8%, Financials -0.7%, Consumer Goods -0.5% and Technology -0.5%. The only two S&P 500 sectors to finish in the black were Utilities +0.2% and Health Care +0.2%. Gold down by 2.11% to $1604.50 and Silver down by 0.7% to $29.50. Crude oil fell to $97.01. In base metals Copper fell 0.74% to $8193. The Aussie dollar weakened buying $101.03.

Main points:

  • Leighton Holdings (LEI) has been selected as the preferred contractor for FMG’s Solomon Iron ore project in the Pilbara WA. Both companies are in negotiations over a 5 year mining and operations contract. The contract will include pre-mobilisation activities and early services for the project, including works for operational readiness and full mine management. A decision by FMG is expected in June.
  • Singapore Telecommunications (SGT) posted another quarter of strong growth in customer acquisitions after announcing a total mobile customer base of 445 million up 11% from the previous year. In India mobile customer base grew by 19.1m or 12% to 181m. In Africa, Airtel had a total mobile customer base of 53.1 million, an increase of 8.9 million or 20%. Optus continued customer growth momentum with net additions of 82,000 this quarter. Prepaid customers were stable at 4.29 million. Net additions for the full year were 421,000, bringing Optus’ total mobile customer base to 9.49 million, up 5% from the previous year. In Singapore, SingTel further grew its market leadership to 45.91%.
  • Bluescope Steel (BSL) has completed a tender for the repurchase of US$300m in private placement notes. The repurchase is to be done through their bank facility. BSL believes this method of funding will benefit the company in the long run. The company is also expecting US$117m for the sale of their North American metals panels business in the 4th Q of FY12.
  • Centro Retail (CRF) has agreed to a record $200m settlement in a legal dispute with shareholders. The class action was brought about by 5,000 investors suing CRF for deceptive conduct by not disclosing $3b worth of interest-bearing debt falling due. After disclosing this debt shares fell immediately by 76%.
  • Onesteel (OST) shareholders have approved the changing of the company name to ‘Arrium’. The change is believed to better reflect the company’s new focus on mining consumables. The stock will trade with the code ARI on July 2.
  • To read Marcus Today’s summary on the Federal Budget sign up for a free trial at www.marcustoday.com.au.

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