The market is up 3. The SFE Futures were up 15 this morning.

Dow Jones closed down 9. The Dow was up 22 at best and down 85 at worst. US markets closed mixed (Dow down S&P 500 up) with disappointing ISM manufacturing numbers raising further concerns that the US is not on a path to recovery — the first sub 50 reading in three years. A weak ISM number was seen as good news adding pressure to the Federal Reserve for further monetary stimulus (QE3). There was better news in the housing markets with construction spending the highest since December 2009. China’s manufacturing PMI numbers yesterday were a touch above expectations but below the previous month and are now running at the slowest pace in seven months. Metals were mixed on the LME with Copper down 0.74%, Zinc down 0.40%, Lead up 1.00% and Nickel up 0.23%Oil was down $1.37 to $83.59. Gold was down $6.60 to $1597.60. BHP and RIO ADRs were both up 0.37% and 0.79%. BHP is set to open 25c on our market today. The A$ is at 102.47c.

Main points:

  • BA Meeting today — The RBA announces their official interest rate decision following their monthly board meeting at 2.30pm.
  • David Jones (DJS) — The market is demanding a full investigation into yesterday’s kerfuffle which saw Britain’s EB Private Equity withdraw a takeover offer days after announcing it. DJS is unchanged on 233c.
  • Rio Tinto (RIO) has stepped up efforts to reduce costs by cutting support and services expenses by 10%. The company is making this move due to rising costs and falling commodity prices before reporting season. RIO is forecast to report a profit of US$12.82bn down from US$15.5bn. RIO is up 0.91% to 5702.c.
  • Echo Entertainment (EGP) says regulators have approved Perpetual’s (PPT) request to increase their stake to 15%. Both Genting and Crown have applied to regulators to lift their stakes above 10%. EGP is up 0.47% to 428c & PPT is up 1.72% to 2304c.
  • Woodside Petroleum (WPL) has received a green light to go ahead and sell part of their stake in the $30bn LNG Browse project to Japanese Mitsubishi Corp & Mitsui & Co. The sale is valued at $2bn. WPL’s stake in the project will fall from 46% to 31.3%. WPL is down 2.55% to 3099c.
  • QR National (QRN) and India’s Adani Group are looking at forming a JV to move 60-80m tonnes of coal per year in QLD’s Galilee basin to the coast. QRN is down 1.32% to 335c.
  • Gunns (GNS) is reviewing the value of their forestry business due to falling woodchip prices and the effect it will have on write-downs and breaching loan covenants with banks. GNS shares are in suspension.
  • Flinders Mines (FMS) — proposed takeover offer by a Russian steel maker has fallen through. FMS is down 9.26% to 12.25c.
  • Building approvals rose 27.3% to 13,591 units in May up from 10,676 units in April. Economists had forecast a 5.1% rise in approvals in May.

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