The market is up 28 points. Dow Jones was flat — was down 145 after some disappointing third quarter earnings, most notably IBM. The market rallied late in the session to finish flat on increased optimism on the budget deal. Under the deal, government agencies will be funded until January 15 and the government can borrow until February 7.

The S&P closed up 0.7% to 1733, finishing at an all-time high.

Gold was up $37.90 to US$1320.20 per ounce, a rise of almost 3%. Expectations for the start of tapering were pushed out, which is considered positive for gold if inflation rises.

The US$ fell against major currencies on expectations of a delay to tapering. The Aussie dollar continued to rise and is trading at US96.27 after reaching highs of US96.45.

VIX volatility index fell 8.4% (good) to 13.48. Markets are feeling a little calmer following the default risk.

US economic data included Initial Jobless Claims which fell to 358,000 from 374,000. Consensus was for a fall to 330,000. Computer problems in California are still affecting this number. The Philadelphia Fed Index was 19.8, down from 22.3, firms remain optimistic about the future.

The partial government shutdown has delayed the release of lots of data, including CPI, Industrial Production and capacity utilisation.

European share markets mixed. No big movements.

European bonds were generally stronger. French, German and Italian 10 year yields were lower.

US Treasuries rose — the yield on the 10 year bond fell 8 basis points to 2.596%. With the budget negotiations extended to early 2014, the expectation is that tapering will be delayed until a longer term deal is worked out.

Oil prices fell 1.6% to US$100.63 a barrel — oil stocks in a major US storage hub increased over the week.

Base metal prices were mixed — copper and nickel were down while lead and zinc rose.


  • Warrnambool Cheese & Butter (WCB) — Bidding war erupts. Diary company Murray Goulburn has lodged a rival bid of $420m trumping both Bega and Saputo bids. The takeover bid is for $7.50 a share above Saputo’s $7 a share and Bega’s 1.2 Bega shares plus $2 cash. WCB is in trading halt.
  • Santos (STO) — Third quarter revenue was up 20% at $1.03 billion. Output was down 1% to 13.4mboe. Average natural gas price was $5.98gj. Output for the year through to December is now expected to be at the lower end of 52-55mboe due to technical disruptions at projects in Vietnam and Australia.
  • Crown (CWN) — Have confirmed it will develop a resort in Sri Lanka. Branded Crown Sri-Lanka, it will be a must-see landmark located on Beira Lake in the Colombo resort district. The building will be an iconic 5-star design with 450 rooms and will provide resort experience that is renowned throughout Asia.
  • Atlas Iron (AGO) — Said yesterday it is having a good run thanks to a strong iron ore price and a record boost in production.
  • Boral (BLD) — Closed up 6.12% yesterday after announcing a JV with a US firm to create a $US1.6 billion partnership.
  • Fortescue Metals (FMG) — Iron ore shipments were up 4% for the previous quarter.
  • Newcrest Mining (NCM) — Beaten expectations to produce 586,573 ounces of gold during the September quarter.
  • Ten Network Holdings (TEN) — Announced a financial year loss of $285 million. The company’s billionaire shareholders have provided a personal guarantee for a $200 million debt facility. This is to help the company fight its way out of trouble. Shareholders include James Packer, Lachlan Murdoch and Bruce Gordon. Gina Rinehart is not participating in the guarantee.
  • Woodside Petroleum (WPL) — Announced a 9.5% increase in quarter production.

Get Crikey for $1 a week.

Lockdowns are over and BBQs are back! At last, we get to talk to people in real life. But conversation topics outside COVID are so thin on the ground.

Join Crikey and we’ll give you something to talk about. Get your first 12 weeks for $12 to get stories, analysis and BBQ stoppers you won’t see anywhere else.

Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
12 weeks for just $12.