The market is up 36 with financial stocks making strong gains on the back of the Dow Jones closing up 91 on Friday and on news that the ECB has set Monday as their deadline for when they will cut off ECB liquidity needed to keep Cypriot banks afloat. Reports advise that both a “good bank” and “bad bank” may be created and that the country’s second largest lender may be closed down. Deposits below 100,000 euros would be removed from the Popular Bank of Cyprus and transferred to the Bank of Cyprus to create a “good bank”. Our futures were up 24 this morning. The Dow was up 98 at best with strong earnings numbers from the retail space. Nike and Tiffany & Co finished up 11.1% and 1.94% on earnings.
US 10-year bond yield up 1bpt to 1.927%. Over the week the yield was down 5bpts. Best sectors — consumer discretionary (+1.2%), consumer staples (+0.9%), energy (+0.8%), and telecom (+0.7%). Worst sectors — materials (+0.1%), utilities (+0.2%), and financials (+0.5%). The VIX (Volatility Index) was down 3.0%. European markets mixed – UK FTSE up 0.17%, German DAX down 0.27%, France down 0.21%, Spain down 0.26% Italy down 0.69%.
- Telstra (TLS) — CEO David Thodey has reassured shareholders that delays in constructing the NBN will not undermine the company’s ability to raise their dividend. He also gave a pledge by saying Telstra was ready to help in any way to help speed up the faltering rollout. TLS is up 0.33% to 454.5c.
- Leighton Holdings (LEI) — Has appointed Bob Humphris as the new chairman and Paula Dwyer as deputy chairman. LEI fell 7% on Friday after a board shake up. Broker recommendations are unchanged. The board shake up is a major distraction for the company that is trying to improve operations. The share price has been in a downtrend since 2008 and is currently overbought on the weekly RSI. LEI is up 4.9% to 2119c.
- The Qantas (QAN) and Emirates tie-up has received final approval from ACCC and is clear for regulatory takeoff. The regulator was concerned with commitments to maintain and a potential increase in the number of seats for sale on certain routes.
- Karoon Gas (KAR) — Shares have fallen after the company announced disappointing news that its Brazilian well did not yield oil. Despite early signs of oil in the Emu-1 well, further testing indicated their main reservoirs contained water instead of oil. A major setback for the company. KAR is down 7.79% to 568c.
- Clough (CLO) — Has announced the sale of its shareholding in Forge Group (FGE) for $187 million — 30.9 million shares at 605c each. QAN is up 0.59% to 171c.
- Funtastic (FUN) — Interim profit of $9.3m up 68%. The company delivered its first dividend of 0.5c since 2006. FUN is up 2.13% to 24c.
- Westfield Group (WDC) — Says it will receive $US700 million from the sale of stakes in six Florida malls to US real estate firm O’Connor Capital Partners. WDC is up 2.7% to 1105c.
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