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Markets Live: Retail cheer amid gloom

Date

Patrick Commins, Jens Meyer

Local stocks have eased lower, as weak Asian markets and mixed economic data competed with positive half-year profit figures from JB Hi-Fi and Country Road.

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That’s it for Markets Live today.

You can read a wrap-up of the action on the markets here.

Thanks for reading and your comments.

See you all again tomorrow morning from 9.

 

Shares finished flat on Monday as the beginning of domestic company reporting season delivered mixed results with investors expecting only modest earnings growth.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index inched higher by just 2.1 points, on Monday, or less than 0.1 per cent, to 5187.9.

Local shares got a weak lead from offshore after equity markets in the United States finished lower on Friday as US company earnings season delivered some disappointing results against a global backdrop of an emerging market rout. India, Turkey and South Africa all hiked interest rates last week in an attempt to stem outflows from their currency markets as the US Federal Reserve continues to reduces its stimulus.

“The Australian economy is undergoing a structural shift post the mining boom and we expect February reporting season will show this is continuing to weigh on company earnings,” Aberdeen Asset Management head of equities Robert Penaloza said. “As well as the obvious problems facing mining services, retail tourism, manufacturing and agriculture are still under quite a lot of pressure.”

Read more.

 

The invasion of international names in fashion, cosmetics, homewares and department stores is gathering momentum as global brands snap up newly-developed space across capital cities and larger suburban shopping centres.

Some, like Spain's Zara, Britain's Topshop and Williams Sonoma’s Pottery Barn from the US have already landed, while others, like British icon Marks & Spencer and Germany’s H&M are yet to arrive.

Australia has become the latest frontier conquered by international retailers, with up to 10 labels opening new stores in the past 18 months.

Where exactly are they moving to? Here's a list of confirmed and rumoured locations

New home for H&M?: 345 George Street.

New home for H&M?: 345 George Street.

Time to turn to the best and worst performers for the day.

Ten Network has continued its stellar run jumping a further 4.2 per cent after communications minister Malcolm Turnbull told the AFR ($) he would "consider changes to ownership laws that could allow a merger of News Corporation and Ten Network".

Pacific Brands was caught up in the positive retail cheer following solid interim results from JB Hi-Fi and Country Road. The owner of Bonds added 4.1 per cent, while JB was up 3.1 per cent.

James Hardie finished 3.1 per cent higher, and REA Group 2.6 per cent.

The losers today was dominated by resource companies, but also included in the worst performers were Treasury Wine Estates, continuing its downward trajectory, and TPG Telecom.

Best and worst performers in the ASX 200.

Best and worst performers in the ASX 200.

The following chart apparently showing scary parallels between today's market and Great Depression times is being passed around again.

It's been debunked plenty of times - if you look at enough periods of the same length you're likely to find similar patterns - but hey, it's still a nice chart.

<p>

Bank of Queensland has become the latest small lender to cut one of its interest rates, as competition in the home loan market heats up.

The Brisbane-based lender today said it would cut 7 basis points off the variable rate offered through its Clear Path no frills product for new customers, to 4.87 per cent. It is not cutting its standard variable rate.

Research from Rate City cited in today's AFR said five lenders had lowered their variable rates in the past month.

The sharemarket has regained lost ground this afternoon after a see-sawing morning to post the slightest of losses.

The S&P/ASX 200 index eased a couple of points to 5187.9, while the broader All Ordinaries index also fell only marginally to 5201.9.

ANZ was the biggest drag on the market, down 1 per cent, followed by BHP.

By sector, energy stocks were the best performers, up 0.8 per cent and led by Origin Energy, which finished the day 1.8 per cent up to $14.23. Utilities also gained, closing 0.5 per cent higher as a group with Spark Infrastructure the best performer.

Consumer discretionary, listed property trusts, IT, telcos and gold stocks also advanced.

Metals and mining stocks dropped 0.4 per cent overall.

Here's a nice wrap-up of the staggering path of the Aussie dollar in 2014, courtesy of NAB's senior currency strategist Emma Lawson:

Following a period of relative stability between mid-December and mid-January and which included a brief return to trade above 90 cents the AUD broke down below its month-long range following the release of a poor December labour market report on Jan 16 and a related step-up in odds for further RBA easing.

However, the release of significantly stronger than forecast fourth-quarter CPI inflation data a week later saw those odds radically scaled back. This was later followed by a surge in business conditions as reported in the latest NAB survey. Together the news offered some fresh support for the AUD.

A sell-off in emerging markets (one catalyst for which was a fall below 50 in the Markit/HSBC China ‘flash’ manufacturing PMI) has been the primary source of downward pressure on the currency independent of the influences of local data. This was compounded by comments from RBA Board member Heather Ridout that an 80 cents dollar was ‘fair’ for importers and exporters.

These factors conspired to pull AUD/USD down to a new cycle low of 0.866 just in front of the Australian Day long weekend. In the last week of the month some semblance of stability returned, aided in part by a firmer AUD/NZD rate after the RBNZ left rates on hold on January 30.

 

It's been a rough start to the year for the Aussie dollar.

It's been a rough start to the year for the Aussie dollar.

After three woeful years, the tide may be turning for small caps, the AFR's Phil Baker notes

Small cap investors are no doubt hoping the sector improves over the next 12 months after three years of underperformance, despite a backdrop of mostly positive returns for Australian fund managers.

Small caps tend to perform at the very beginning of the economic cycle and are a good indicator of how confident investors are and how much risk they are happy to take.

Over the past three years small cap companies have vastly underperformed the broader equities market as investors have, overall, shunned the growth and value style of investing, preferring the yield play and sticking to stocks, such as the banks, that pay a good dividend.

It’s always timely to remember that around 41 per cent of the major S&P/ASX200 index is linked to four major banks and two resource stocks, leaving plenty of scope for investors to hunt for small businesses that can help with providing for a decent retirement.

Read more ($)

Gold is trading slightly lower, extending losses after the first weekly decline in six as physical buying across Asia slowed during the Lunar New Year.

Spot gold Bullion for immediate delivery fell as much as 0.2 percent to $US1242.15 an ounce, after dropping 2 per cent last week.

Markets in China, which probably overtook India as the largest gold consumer in 2013, are shut through February 6.

‘‘The Chinese market is on a one-week break, taking some momentum out of physical purchases,’’ Edward Meir, an analyst at INTL FCStone, wrote in a note dated today. ‘‘We suspect that the global equity markets will likely see more turbulence in February, which likely will mean that gold should be fairly resilient for a little while longer.’’

While the Reserve Bank is widely anticipated to leave rates on hold tomorrow, traders will be taking cues from the central bank's statement, particularly its determination in jawboning the AUD lower, FXCM market analyst, David de Ferranti notes:

  • The decline in the exchange rate has likely contributed to the rise in tradables prices and inflation expectations, which lessens the scope for accommodative policy.
  • However, the rebalancing of the domestic economy would still benefit from a lower value of the currency, meaning there is an argument for further browbeating from the RBA, which would likely lead the AUD lower.
  • Given the uncertainty surrounding both outcomes the exchange rate is left prone to further swings.

The dollar has been trading fairly steady around 87.5 US cents today, or about 2.5 cents lower than on the day of the last board meeting, in December.

It is, however, still above the 85 US cent-level RBA chief Glenn Stevens told the AFR before Christmas he'd feel more comfortable with. It's also well above the 80 US cents that RBA board member Heather Ridout in an interview with the WSJ last month called "a fair deal for everybody".

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Over in China, it's not only the manufacturing sector that's facing a slowdown, today's data points to a deterioration in other sectors too.

A report released today on the non-manufacturing sector showed that PMI falling to 53.4 in January from 54.6 in December. That’s the lowest reading since at least April 2011.

Chinese bourses are closed for the Lunar Year holiday, but other Asian markets are lower, with Japan's Nikkei down anotehr 1.2 per cent, or nearly 10 per cent since the beginning of the year.

‘‘The risk-off mood is pretty strong,’’ says Naoki Fujiwara, Tokyo-based chief fund manager at Shinkin Asset Management. ‘‘Individuals and hedge funds are wanting to take money off the table. Emerging-market currencies are still facing problems that started with the Fed’s tapering and falling into a negative cycle. The positivity we saw at the start of the year is being corrected.’’

The release of last year’s political donations list offers a wonderful insight into how the political, and pragmatic, interests of our corporates and billionaires converge and diverge.

Labor found support from surprising quarters with Gina Rinehart’s Hancock Coal Pty Ltd donating $55,000 to Labor last year and $45,000 to the Nats, which meant there was nothing in the kitty for the Libs.

Rinehart’s mothership, Hancock Prospecting tipped in a further $55,000 for the Nationals but the $8,250 donation to the Liberal National Party of Queensland is the closest she got to a Libs donation.

Hancock Prospecting kept its hands in its pockets last year while Hancock Coal gave $5,000 to Labor and $22,000 to the Libs.

Frank Lowy’s Westfield was not playing favourites making $150,000 donations to the national branches of the Liberals and Labor.

Read more

Investor home loans in NSW rose to their highest level in six years - at 53.4 per cent, mortgage broker AFG says.

The continued demand from investors in the state gave AFG its strongest January on record, with more than $2.58 billion of home loans processed last month, the company said. It was 14 per cent higher than last January.

In contrast, first-home buyer activity in NSW slipped to 3.4 per cent in January from 3.5 per cent in December.

"We've had a very strong start to the year, with continuing trends of high investment activity in NSW and robust first home buyer activity in WA," AFG's sales and operations general manager Mark Hewitt said.

"With most people expecting the historically low rates to remain with us for much of the year, we're preparing for even higher levels of activity now that people are getting back to work from the summer holidays."

For Victoria, investor activity increased to 37.4 per cent last month. First-home buyers made up 11.2 per cent of all AFG mortgages sold.

 

Mortgage broker AFG says investor home loans in NSW are at their highest in six years.

Mortgage broker AFG says investor home loans in NSW are at their highest in six years.

Turning to regional markets, Chinese investors remain on holiday as part of their New Year celebrations.

Japanese and Korean shareholders have had a busy day thus far dumping stock - the Nikkei is down 1.3 per cent, while Korea's Kospi index is barely better, down 1.1 per cent.

Sngapore's benchmark index is down 1 per cent, and Indonesian shares are 0.9 per cent lower.

Australia’s big four banks may rank among the most profitable in the developed world, but when it comes to brand value they trail their better known foreign peers.

Aggressive expansion into Asia has put ANZ at the top of the list for Australia’s most valuable bank brands, however the bank’s global rank held steady from last year at 39, with a brand value of $6.8 billion.

The brand value of US-based bank Wells Fargo, the world’s most valuable, is $US30.2 billion ($34.5 billion), according to The Brand Finance Banking 500 study.

Commonwealth Bank, which some analysts expect will post of half year profit of $4 billion next week, comes in second among Australian bank brand value and is ranked 42nd in the world, up two places from last year, worth $6.3 billion.

NAB recorded 46th position amongst its global counterparts, valued at $5 billion, while Westpac with a brand worth of $4.9 billion was 48th in the world rankings.

All of Australia’s big four banks improved their brand value, according to the annual study, but only CBA and Westpac improved their world ranking.

Below we noted that JP Morgan had initiated coverage with a positive recommendation on newly-listed but already-embattled transport group McAleese.

The broker's analysts think the market reactions to recent contract losses were an "overreaction".

Well, looks like more bad news for McAleese ahead, as reported by ABC and to be featured in Four Corners tonight:

"A fuel tanker company [Cootes, a subsidiary of McAleese] involved in a fatal accident in Sydney last year was using large numbers of dilapidated vehicles that should never have been on the road, according to a whistleblower working inside the company."

Read more.

Analysts have been running the ruler over a possible merger between department store chains Myer and David Jones, giving the move a cautious tic of approval.

But doubts remain about Myer's claim it could generate about $85 million is cost savings within three years and if such a deal would deliver any benefits to its shareholders.

JPMorgan analysts Shaun Cousins and Quinn Pierson say the merger rationale is ''sound, given cost savings and anti-trust risks appear manageable''. ''But costs to generate synergies are high and execution risks are significant.''

Headlining those risks is the disruption to both companies' search for new chief executives, with both bosses to step down this year.

''A new chief executive may prefer to develop their own strategy rather than implement one developed by the board,'' Cousins and Pierson wrote in a note to investors.

Ben Rundle from Moelis and Company say it makes commercial sense to merge the companies, considering store rationalisation, greater buying power and less middle management. But he says the main issue is Myer's offer of a nil premium scrip merger.

''[The] problems with nil premium scrip mergers are social - you don't even get to the economics,'' Rundle says. ''David Jones would think they are better management, why give that up for nil premium and shareholders end up with Myer management and head office in Melbourne and dilute real estate holdings?''

Grant Saligari and James O'Brien, of Credit Swisse, say it's an ''ill-conceived'' proposal.

The pair question Myer's claim of delivering cost savings, which is reliant one off implementation cost of $170 million.

''The proposed synergies are a sleight of hand that, on the one hand, requires significant integration to achieve cost reduction and, one the other hand, promise that there will be no downside from a blurring of brand identity,'' Saligari and O'Brien say. ''[But] irrespective of the potential cost based synergies, is lack of scale the most pressing issue facing both organisations?''

Almost all Aussies drive to work.

Almost all Aussies drive to work.

Wow. With most Australians concentrated in just a few cities, the overwhelming majority drive to work, the ABC reports.

Let's hope petrol prices don't go too much higher in the coming years.

Nine in 10 iron ore producers are profitable at current commodity prices.

Nine in 10 iron ore producers are profitable at current commodity prices.

More than 90 per cent of iron ore producers are profitable at current prices for the metal, which is around $US120/tonne.

Even at the low of $US86.70/tonne in September 2012, almost eight in 10 miners remained in the money, according to analysis by NAB economists.

Production of iron ore is expected to increase significantly in 2014, say the NAB economists.

Bloomberg estimates an increase in capacity (outside of China) of around 104 million tonnes. The bulk of supply additions in both 2014 and 2015 are expected in Australia, as BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Fortescue add new capacity in Western Australia.

The new supply is expected to add downward pressure to iron ore prices from the second half of 2014, which could affect listed miners' share prices.

NAB forecasts iron ore to fetch $US108/tonne over the three months to June, $US105/tonne in the September quarter, and finish the year at $US100/tonne.

 

 

 

The Future Fund says current growth in some markets cannot be sustained, and warns it expects investments, particularly in equities, to slow.

The Fund has grown to $96.56 billion, with a five-year return rate of 10.6 per cent per annum. It said today that its return for the year to December was 17.2 per cent, against a benchmark target of 6.9 per cent.

In an update to the market, chief investment officer David Neal said the rate at which the fund had grown could not be sustained indefinitely, and had accelerated due to an unusually good run in equities. He said that acceleration would eventually slow.

‘‘We don’t conclude ... that everything is horribly expensive and we have to sell equities," he said. ‘‘But we do conclude that there’s been a very powerful trend here and it can’t go on forever.

"It’s important to be careful and prudent and to think hard about where you believe it’s going to go."

Renowned opportunistic investor David Paradice has pared back his stake in Transfield Services based on a “gut feeling”, three months after taking an 8 per cent stake in the company.

The founder of Paradice Investments sold down his stake to less than 5 per cent of the company’s outstanding shares in December last year, according to Bloomberg data and ASX disclosures.

While Paradice retains a significant, but no longer a substantial, holding in the company, he now appears to be hedging his view on Transfield’s ability to turn around its fortunes and start delivering value to shareholders.

“It has a lot of debt… We’re just a little unsure about it. It’s just one of those gut feelings,” Paradice told Smart Investor from the United States.

Read more at Smart Investor.

BloombergBusinessweek is running a good piece on the incredible shrinking market for credit-default swaps, the financial markets' weapons of mass destruction:

Five years after almost blowing up the global economy and eight years after making fortunes for Wall Street traders, the credit-default swap market is quietly fading. Rules introduced in the wake of the financial crisis by US and European regulators have led investment banks to withdraw from the market and made trading credit-default swaps and other derivatives more expensive.

And with the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates near historic lows, fewer borrowers have defaulted, which means less demand for debt insurance. As a result, outstanding credit-default swaps on individual companies declined by about half, to $US13.2 trillion, from 2007 through June 2013, according to the Bank for International Settlements. Dealers once offered $US5 billion trades; now $500 million is more typical.

Firms that built their reputations by trading credit-default swaps, such as BlueMountain Capital Management and Saba Capital Management, are struggling to find profitable ways to invest money in the CDS market. Traders at investment banks and hedge funds are abandoning the field for better opportunities.

“It did feel like the situation was a bit of a dead end,” says Dmitry Selemir, who left his job trading structured credit at BlueMountain in June to concentrate on Scriggler.com, a website he co-founded to host essays and discussions of ideas. “I found it increasingly difficult to be excited about what I was doing.”

Bankers at JPMorgan Chase (JPM) invented credit-default swaps in the 1990s as a way for investors to protect themselves against loans going bad: One party makes regular payments to another in return for a guarantee to be made whole if a borrower defaults on its debt.

What started as a simple hedging tool evolved into a playground for hedge funds and bank proprietary trading desks to speculate on debt, from corporate bonds to subprime mortgages.

Read more

"We suspect that there is too much anticipation from the RBA tomorrow to 'drop' its easing bias, but the RBA hasn’t expressed an explicit easing bias in its monthly Board communiqué since the August cut last year."

- TD Securities' head of rates strategy, Annette Beacher

 

Shares in LVMH jumped the most in three years on Friday after the Paris-based company reported sales growth in fashion and leather goods rebounded in the fourth quarter.

Analysts and investors have been quick to write off the global luxury brands this year as Asian demand for high-end goods has waned, and particularly after Chinese authorities cracked down on over-the-top spending and gift-giving by officials.

The shares gained around 10 euros in one trading session, up 7.9 per cent to 132.15 euros, arresting a more than four-month slide in the price. In September the stock was trading at 149.25 euros.

Italian shoemaker Salvatore Ferragamo also gained 4.3 per cent after reporting revenues that met expectations.

Read more.

 

Business Spectator, the business website started by finance journalists that was sold to News Corp for an eye-popping sum, will start charging for access to its star columnists.

Columns by Alan Kohler, Robert Gottliebsen and Stephen Bartholomeusz will be priced at $4 a week, or $208 a year, from next week. Content from News Corp's broadsheets The Australian and Wall Street Journal published on Business Spectator will also be limited to subscribers.

Business Spectator was launched in 2007 just before the financial crisis by former Fairfax editors Kohler, Gottliebsen and Bartholomeusz, with a focus on commentary. Its parent company AIBM was bought by News Corp less than two years ago for $30 million, when Business Spectator had 480,000 unique browers and sister publication Eureka Report had 15,500 subscribers.

According to the website rating site alexa.com, businessspecator.com.au is now the 384th most used site in Australia. News Corp Australia points to Nielsen numbers saying it has a unique audience of 200,000 a month.

So what should we make of the fall in building approvals for December, according to the new data released by the Bureau of Statistics this morning?

Barclays chief economist Kieran Davies says a correction was expected given that building approvals grew strongly last year and had run ahead of the housing lending figures.

"The fundamentals of the housing market are still very strong," Mr Davies said.

"House prices have done well and activity has picked up. The only part [of the housing market] that has been weak are the renovations to existing homes, which has been a bit soft."

Mr Davies said low mortgage rates and strong population growth driven by immigration would continue to support the expanding market.

 

JPMorgan has initiated coverage on troubled new market entrant McAleese, slapping an “overweight” recommendation on the stock and describing investors’ response to contract losses as an “overreaction”.

McAleese’s value has shrivelled by 29 per cent since its listing in December as share holders head for the exit after last week’s shock announcements about the loss of key fuel distribution contracts.

But JPMorgan’s analysts, argue the sell-off was “overly harsh” and claim the turmoil will galvanise management.

JPMorgan, Credit Suisse and Macquarie acted as joint lead managers on the McAleese float.

The company remains in the spotlight over a fatal crash in Sydney in October with allegations circulating about the sub-standard roadworthiness of fuel tankers in its transport subsidiary Cootes.

Read more ($).

Job ads fell 0.3 per cent in January, arresting a more rapid decline of 0.7 per cent in December.

There are now 3 per cent fewer job ads than six months ago, according to ANZ’s monthly survey of the number of job advertisements, considered a leading indicator for unemployment figures.

“While none of the measures of job advertising/vacancies have shown a convincing upward trend at this stage, they are clearly not falling at the sharp pace seen earlier,” wrote ANZ chief economist Ivan Colhoun.

“This suggests that overall conditions in the labour market are also likely to stabilise in coming months [and] the unemployment rate will peak in the 5¾-6% range.”

 

New building approvals have fallen for the third straight month.

Building approvals fell 2.9 per cent in December after a 1.5 per cent fall in November.

Economists had expected new building approvals to ease by 0.3 per cent in December after a 1.5 per cent fall in November and a 1.8 per cent drop in October. The falls partly reverse the sharp 14.4 per cent jump in September.

Australian companies looking to float in 2014 will face jaded investors and a tough equities market which will hamper appetite for new listings.

That is the view of listed investment company WAM Research chairman, Geoff Wilson, who warned investors were fatigued with initial public offerings following a rush of public floats last year.

“It’s definitely going to be a difficult year,” Wilson says. “Everyone was trying to get whatever they could list before Christmas, trying to get them out the door.”

More than 70 companies listed on the ASX during the latter half of 2013 alone.

Wilson notes that the equities market could fall between 5 and 10 per cent by the end of the first quarter of 2014 amid a struggling domestic economy. Signs of strain are already showing, with more than 60 profit downgrades by listed Australian companies for the 2014 financial year to date.

Read more.

Half of all Australian households are struggling to save money each month while many have less than five thousand dollars saved for an emergency.

ME Bank’s biannual Household Financial Comfort Report reveals that households battling to save rose two per cent to 51 per cent in the six months to December 2013.

The study of 15-hundred households also found 46 per cent have less than $5000 dollars in savings, while 11 per cent are spending more than they earn. A further five per cent are using equity in their own home to make ends meet month to month.

Country Road has announced an interim profit result of $38 million, up 72 per cent from the first half result last financial year. On an earnings per share basis the growth was 43 per cent, to 36.6 cents per share.

They announced an interim dividend of 17.9 cents. The company, which owns the Country Road, Mimco, Trenery and Witchery chains, did not pay an interim dividend last year.

“We expect the group to deliver further improved results for the remainder of the financial year but at a lower growth rate now that comparative results include Witchery and Mimco in Australasia,” said CEO Iain Nairn in the ASX statement.

“The retail landscape in Australasia and South Africa in the second half of this financial year is likely to remain highly competitive with consumer and business confidence remaining cautious and the arrival of more new market entrants in Australia,” Mr Nairn said.

 

The big four banks outweighed the mining sector in corporate donations to the major political parties in the lead-up to last year’s election, while the Labor Party was ahead overall in the fundraising stakes by nearly $3 million on June 30 last year.

Australian Electoral Commission data show the Labor Party’s total receipts were ahead of the Liberal Party at the close of the 2012-13 financial year, at $13.8 million to $11.4 million. The Liberal Party was also in slightly more debt as it geared up for the 2013 federal election campaign.

The Cormack Foundation, a Victorian-based group that fundraises and invests in the stock market on behalf of the Liberal Party, received a total of $3.3 million in donations from corporate Australia in the 2012-13 financial year and gave $1.5 million to the party.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia gave a combined total of $938,600 during the financial year to the foundation, while National Australia Bank gave $616,693 and Wesfarmers gave $484,364.

The next-biggest donor to the Liberal Party after the Cormack Foundation was Roslyn Packer, wife of the late Kerry Packer, with a $570,000 donation.

Westpac Banking Corp gave the Labor Party its biggest single donation of $1.5 million, followed by a second donation of $750,000 and a third of $500,000. Poultry group Inghams Enterprises was the party’s second-biggest corporate donor with $250,000.

 

 

Shares have clawed back some of their losses but most of the blue chips are still in the red. The big banks are down between 0.1 (Westpac) and 0.9 per cent (ANZ), while the big miners have lost around 0.2 per cent.

Here are this morning's main winners and losers among the top 200:

 

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The stocks that look set to please or disappoint investors this earnings season.

The stocks that look set to please or disappoint investors this earnings season.

Continuing on from the Morgan Stanley survey of investor sentiment, the attached graphic shows the stocks fund managers believe are most likely to please or disappoint with earnings results this month.

Professional investors view of the market by sector.

Professional investors view of the market by sector.

Professional investors are most upbeat about healthcare and wary of engineering and construction companies, according to a survey by Morgan Stanley.

The broker surveyed 46 of its clients over January to gauge investor expectations ahead of the February reporting season.

Fund managers have become less pessimistic on the economically important building materials segment. The investors see conditions improving but “peak conditions” won’t be hit until 2016.

That puts valuations in the sector at risk, with James Hardie the stock with “the most downside”, according to the analysts, yet also the company most likely to give a positive surprise coming into results (more on earnings risk soon).

Investors are cautious on infrastructure stocks, with the threat of rising bond yields a big risk to valuations in the sector.

Most/least favoured stocks by sector according to respondents:

  • Transport: Aurizon most favoured/Virgin Australia least favoured.
  • Infrastructure: Transurban/Auckland International Airport
  • Engineering and construction: Downer/Transfield
  • Healthcare: Resmed/Primary Health Care
  • Building materials: James Hardie/Boral

 

Here's another noteworthy snippet of eco data that the RBA board is likely to consider:  home prices across the capital cities rose 1.2 per cent in January, from the previous month, extending a strong run that has boosted household wealth and confidence.

Figures from property consultant RPData-Rismark showed overall dwelling prices were up 9.8 per cent compared to January last year, led by a 13.4 per cent jump in Sydney. Prices in Melbourne followed with a gain of 11.9 per cent while Perth saw an increase of 6.9 per cent. Home values are now 4.8 per cent higher than their previous peak in October 2010.

While higher prices have stirred talk of a bubble, they are considered by policymakers as necessary to encourage a much-needed revival in home building.

The Reserve Bank, which cut interest rates to an historic low of 2.5 per cent last August, has been counting on home construction to provide vital support to the economy as a long boom in mining investment cools.

The central bank holds it first policy meeting of the year tomorrow and is widely expected to hold rates steady given signs that they are working to revive demand in the economy.

"The sustained growth in dwelling values is another factor the RBA is likely to consider when deliberating on any movement in the cash rate," said RP Data research director Tim Lawless.

Read more.

A private gauge of inflation rose only marginally in January while the annual pace slowed a touch, a welcome moderation after price pressures took an unexpected spike higher in the fourth quarter.

The TD Securities-Melbourne Institute's monthly measure of consumer prices edged up 0.1 per cent in January from December, when it had jumped 0.7 per cent. The annual pace slowed to 2.5 per cent, from 2.7 per cent, putting it bang in the middle of the Reserve Bank long-term target of 2 to 3 per cent.

The benign outcome would be a comfort to the RBA after official figures on consumer prices showed a surprisingly sharp increase in inflation for the last quarter of 2013.

TD's head of Asia-Pacific research, Annette Beacher, said the result was notable as January was usually a seasonally strong month for the gauge.

"If we exclude the seasonal jump in education fees, utility prices and transport fares, price pressures appeared to start 2014 on a particularly soft note, somewhat of a relief after the shock price increases featured in our December report."

We are likely to see some further risk reduction and selling pressure this morning as the market heads into the profit reporting season, says CMC chief market analyst Ric Spooner:

  • Mixed profit results combined with relatively high valuations in some of major US stocks, especially in the tech sector has seen ongoing selling in the US market that is adding to international stock market nervousness due to concerns over emerging markets.
  • Although China’s official PMI was in line with expectations with a read of 50.5, it shows ongoing declines in export orders and manufacturing employment that will do little to arrest current negative sentiment towards the emerging market sector. This was evident in ongoing weakness in commodity prices which will weigh on sentiment towards resource stocks this morning.
  • Investor attention will also be focused on this morning’s building approval statistics. Recent figures have suggested that low interest rates and improving confidence are finally leading to a situation where dwelling starts are growing to meet the housing backlog. The market will be looking for this to continue as an area of potential strength for the Australian economy.

The man who made the acronym BRICs famous and brought global attention to emerging markets believes commodity-led economies such as Australia will suffer as China edges towards slower growth, the AFR reports.

Former Goldman Sachs Asset Management chairman and prominent economist Jim O’Neill said that as the world’s second-biggest economy makes the transition away from infrastructure-led investment and towards a more sustainable, consumer-driven path there will be clear winners and losers to emerge.

“There is a new China being developed, more [focused] on quality and its own consumers, and less on low-value-added exports and heavy industry,” Mr O’Neill said. “The winners and losers are very different: Mexico, big winner; Australia, big loser. Many commodity producers are losers unless – like Mexico – they are competitive and can produce a lot of things China did.”

Mexico has a thriving manufacturing sector as well as commodities cachet. In Australia, the non-mining parts of the economy are yet to step up to secure a smooth transition away from mining-led investment.

Mr O’Neill retired from Goldman in 2013. He continues to defend the concept of the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India and China) and highlights that not only are those economies bigger than he ever predicted, but they remain outperformers even as emerging markets give up some of their growth lead on developed markets.

Read more ($)

'Australia, big loser,' Jim O'Neill says.

'Australia, big loser,' Jim O'Neill says. Photo: Reuters

The sharemarket has opened lower, as investors remain worried about emerging markets contagion.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index is down 23.8 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 5166.2, while the broader All Ords has lost 23.4 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 5181.7.

Among the sectors, materials is down 0.6 per cent, financials has lost 0.5 per cent, while gold is up 0.3 per cent.

This story is gaining some traction on our websites: the growing problems in the Chinese banking system could spill over into a wider financial crisis, one of the most respected analysts of China’s lenders has warned.

Charlene Chu, a former senior analyst at Fitch in Beijing and now the head of Asian research at Autonomous Research, said the rapid expansion of foreign-currency borrowing meant a crisis in China’s financial system was becoming a bigger risk for international banks.

“One of the reasons why the situation in China has been so stable up to this point is that, unlike many emerging markets, there is very, very little reliance on foreign funding. As that changes, it obviously increases their vulnerability to swings in foreign investor appetite,” said Ms Chu in an interview with Britain’s The Telegraph.

Ms Chu has been warning since 2009 about the growth of a shadow banking system in China that has helped fuel the credit expansion seen in the country in the wake of the Western financial crisis. However, fears are growing that the build-up of foreign borrowing by the Chinese, particularly in US dollars, is creating an even greater build-up of risk than that seen before the crisis of 2008.

Figures published by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in October showed foreign currency loans booked in China, as well as cross-border borrowing by Chinese companies, had reached $US880bn as of March 2013, up from $US270bn in 2009.

Read more

Deutsche Bank has revised its view of a potential merger between retail icons, Myer and David Jones, describing it as a move that would create value for share holders in both companies.

While the bank’s analysts previously described the two department store chains as an “unlikely couple” and cast doubt on whether a union would receive the blessing of the competition regulator, the ACCC, they argue the cost benefits are compelling.

They calculate the syngeries from a merger would reach $473 million.

If the merger was executed at a zero premium, the benefit from the deal would be shared equally. The analysts claim David Jones investors “would enjoy sharp earnings per share (EPS) accretion somewhat offset by multiple contraction while Myer shareholders would see modest EPS dilution and multiple expansion (better balance sheet and access to property).”

If a premium was offered to David Jones’ investors, “the value equation would tip in their favour”.

 

A survey of local manufacturers suggests that Australian business conditions continued to soften in January, as the Australian Industry Group's Performance of Manufacturing Index slipped lower to 46.7 against 47.6 in December.

An index reading above 50 points indicates activity is generally expanding; below 50, that it is declining. The distance from 50 is indicative of the strength of the expansion or decline.

The index had expanded in only two months (immediately after the 2013 Federal election) since June 2011 and has averaged 46.3 over the past year.

There was little reaction by the Australian dollar, which is trading around 87.6 US cents.

Stocks to watch

  • In New York trade on Friday; BHP Billiton ADR -0.5%, Rio Tinto ADR -0.9%
  • Gold futures fell for 4th time in 5 sessions on Friday in New York
  • Charter Hall Retail (CQR): EGM in Sydney
  • David Jones (DJS): open to improved bid from Myer, AFR reports
  • JB Hi-Fi (JBH): 1H earnings, conf. call 10:30am;  company pre-reported on January 28
  • UGL (UGL): Preparing sale process for A$1.3b DTZ unit, AFR says in Street Talk column
  • Westfield (WDC): In talks to sell stakes in two UK malls: AFR reports

Broker ratings:

  • Bendigo & Adelaide Bank (BEN): Cut to hold at Bell Potter; price target $12
  • Brambles (BXB): Rated new buy at BBY; PT $10
  • David Jones (DJS): Cut to sell from buy at BBY with PT $2.90;
  • Fantastic Holdings (FAN): Raised to equal-weight at Morgan Stanley
  • Lynas (LYC): Cut to neutral vs overweight at JPMorgan
  • Medusa Mining (MML): Cut to neutral from buy at Goldman Sachs
  • Myer (MYR): Cut to sell from buy at BBY with PT $2.60; cut to neutral from outperform at Credit Suisse with PT $2.70
  • NRW Holdings (NWH): Raised to speculative buy from neutral at Hartleys; PT $1.67
  • Seek (SEK): Raised to buy from hold at Deutsche Bank; PT $13.65

Investors beware: there’s no immediate end in sight to the pain in emerging markets, as the pace of money rushing out of those markets is increasing rapidly, reckon the global asset allocation team at Société Générale.

They also point to the fact that the US Federal Reserve appears determined to continue its tapering program regardless of the effect on emerging market assets.

The analysts at the French investment bank track the flows in and out of global mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to get a snapshot of where international investors are shifting their cash.

And there is “an exceptionally strong link between EM equity performance and flows,” they point out.

Investors tend to go with broad emerging market funds, while specialisation by country is less common (around 47 per cent of global EM assets they reckon).

“The implication is that all EM markets face outflows currently, with little discrimination between the countries that are most exposed and those which are more defensive,” they conclude.

So where’s all the money coming out of EM going? To Europe, the analysts reckon, particularly Italy, Spain and the UK.

 

Global investors are pulling money out of emerging markets at an increasing pace.

Global investors are pulling money out of emerging markets at an increasing pace.

In January the ASX200 chalked up its worst start to a year since 2010. What are your expectations for this month:

Poll: The ASX200 lost more than 3% loss in January; not a great start to the year. What are your expectations for February?

Poll form
  1. Please select an answer.
  2. View results
The sell-off will continue, taking the ASX200 below 5000 points.

25%

We will see more volatility but only a small drop for the month: ASX around 5100.

18%

February will see ups and downs and the index will end the month flat, around 5200.

24%

Optimism will slowly come back taking the ASX200 slightly higher to around 5300.

20%

Bull market: the ASX200 will jump beyond 5400.

13%

Total votes: 726.

Would you like to vote?

You will need Cookies enabled to use our Voting Feature.

Poll closed 2 Mar, 2014

Disclaimer:

These polls are not scientific and reflect the opinion only of visitors who have chosen to participate.

And looking further ahead, Michael Pascoe reckons we might be getting an upward revision to economic growth later this week:

It's just seven weeks since Treasury Joe Hockey painted a gloomy picture while delivering Treasury's mid-year economic and fiscal outlook (MYEFO). On Friday, the Reserve Bank is likely to say the Treasurer was too pessimistic by upgrading its own forecast for 2014.

Most eyes are focusing on tomorrow's RBA board meeting for any sort of hint about interest rates, but the real news is likely to be in the bank's quarterly statement on monetary policy on Friday.

Chances are that the RBA modelling will predict growth closer to 2.75 per cent this year, compared with its November forecast and the MYEFO estimate of about 2.5 per cent. And every quarter per cent helps if you're hoping unemployment won't rise to much more than 6 per cent.

Read more

Economic data week kicks off this morning with RP Data-Rismark house price index for January (+1.2% forecast.

Also today is the AiG Manufacturing index and the monthly TD inflation gauge, along with building approvals (tipped to rebound, by 3%), ANZ job ads and finally RBA commodity prices later this afternoon (4.30pm).

US stocks fell sharply on Friday on continued unease over emerging markets and a number of high-profile earnings disappointments.

At the closing bell on Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 150.41 points (0.94 per cent) to 15,698.20, the broad-based S&P 500 fell 11.60 (0.65 per cent) to 1,782.59, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index lost 19.25 (0.47 per cent) at 4,103.88.

Anthony Conroy, head of global trading at Bank of New York Convergex Group, said Friday's losses were prompted by a confluence of factors, including some weak earnings reports and the sense of some investors that a correction was inevitable after the 2013 rise in stocks.

"The economy is probably okay," Conroy said. "I think the emerging markets are probably weaker than expected."

Amazon sank 11 per cent after earnings came in at US51c per share, well below the US66c forecast by analysts. Results were hit by a sharp rise in expenses.

Dow component Chevron fell 4.1 per cent after earnings slumped 32 per cent compared with last year and revenues of $US56.2 billion badly underperformed the $US63.1 billion forecast by analysts.

Earnings season is kicking off and JB Hi-Fi ist first cab off the rank this morning, offering few surprises, though, after updating the market last week. The focus is on the outlook:

JB Hi-Fi is forecasting full-year net profit to rise as much as 10.8 per cent to $129 million for the 12 months ending June, underpinned by 6 to 8 per cent sales growth.

The consumer electronics retailer confirmed that net profit for the six months ending December rose 10 per cent to $90.3 million on sales growth of 6.8 per cent.

JB Hi-Fi pre-released its interim profit results last month in an attempt to distance itself from a series of profit downgrades in the discretionary retail sector following patchy Christmas trading conditions.

The Australian dollar has rebounded after China’s official manufacturing sector gauge came out in line with expectations.

The dollar is currently fetching 87.71 US cents, up from 86.99 US cents late Friday amid more concern over emerging markets.

‘‘I think the Aussie dollar’s fall was representative of a broader deterioration in risk sentiment on Friday,’’ Bank of New Zealand strategist Kymberly Martin says. ‘‘We had a continuation of concern focused on emerging markets and emerging market currency volatility.

‘‘But the PMI was pretty solid and that probably helped to soothe some concerns around Chinese growth.’’

In data out over the weekend, China's factory growth eased to an expected six-month low in January, hurt by weaker local and foreign demand, a survey showed, echoing the results of a private survey released by HSBC earlier last week.

The official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) edged down to 50.5 in January from December's 51, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Saturday, in line with market expectations.

The change reinforces concerns that China's economy is stuttering and could drag on financial markets today as global investors, already nervous about capital flight in emerging markets, find another reason to sell riskier assets.

The declines in the PMI could be largely due to the festival effects, ANZ suggests:

  • Historical patterns suggest that China’s manufacturing activities tend to cool down before the Chinese New Year as many migrant workers return home for a long holiday.
  • However, our track of central government’s spending suggests that the pace of government expenditure accelerated last December, which could provide some impetus to the economy in Q1.
  • Combining all these factors, we maintain our view that the growth momentum will trend down somewhat in Q1.

The ASX200 looks set to open lower following the lead of international bourses on continued unease over emerging markets. Data ranging from manufacturing to housing to inflation will test the nerve of local investors, as will a few earnings reports.

Some key markets:

  • SPI futures down 23 points at 5120
  • AUD at 87.70 US cents, 89.4 yen, 65.04 euro cents
  • On Wall St, S&P500 -0/65%, Dow Jones -0.94%, Nasdaq -0.47%
  • In Europe, FTSE100 -0.43%, CAC -0.34%, DAX -0.71%
  • Spot gold up 63 US cents at $US1244.55 an ounce
  •  Brent oil down $US1.55 at $US106.40 per barrel
  • Iron ore flat $US122.60 per tonne

What’s on today

A slew of economic data: AiGroup PMI, RP Data-Dismark house prices, TD inflation gauge, Building approvals, ANZ job ads.

Financial markets in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Malaysia are closed today for public holidays.

Read more in this morning's need2know

Good morning and welcome to the Markets Live blog for Monday.

Your editors today are Jens Meyer and Patrick Commins.

This blog is not intended as investment advice.

BusinessDay with wires.

Quotes Search

Sort comments by:
  • "The invasion of international names in fashion, cosmetics, homewares and department stores is gathering momentum"

    Are they paying 32 times more rent than Myer and David Jones or was the author of a certain article on a certain site a little bit off on their figures last week?

    Commenter
    just checking
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 5:09PM
  • Global warming isn't true, arctic sea ice is recovering! See the graph!

    www.skepticalscience.com/graphics/ArcticEscalator2012_med.gif

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 4:50PM
  • Also love how you pick time frames to suit your agenda. How much had it made people that have held it for 7, 5 or even 1 year??? Haha no wonder you're angry

    Commenter
    Laughing
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 4:38PM
    • Oh and gee up... cheer up!

      ROFLMAO!

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 5:14PM
  • "Over 5 MILLION square kilometers and growing rapidly"

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/graphics/ArcticEscalator2012_med.gif

    It is definitely not growing rapidly.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 4:38PM
  • Al Gore December 2007: "one study estimated that (the north polar ice cap) could be completely gone during Summer in less that 22 years. Another new study to be presented by a US Navy researchers later this week warns that it could happen in as little as 7 years".

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPLD8aylRiw

    Al Gore didn't say 2013. He didn't make any prediction at all. He reported the findings of a study by the US Navy.

    Stop making stuff up.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 4:31PM
  • @Mitch: I have 30% deposit for an average house which I saved since I was 18 and my borrowing capacity is 800k+ which I honestly don't know how they come up with. Still it's a ridiculous amount of $ to loan.
    @Allan: Too many commitment here. Can't move. I'm looking forward to the day the tragedy in QLD to repeat in Sydney but it seems ... distant.

    Commenter
    sad FHB
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 4:09PM
    • "I have 30% deposit"

      "my borrowing capacity is 800k+"

      Complains that he can't find a good house or unit to buy or rent. Hm...

      Commenter
      cursory glance
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:24PM
    • @FHB oh you're in Sydney and can't move because of ties. So you would be paying far too much for far too little if you bought. So instead you are a captive target for landlords. The $800k borrowing limit isn't all that surprising if you look at low interest rates and long-term loans. If you don't want to buy due to current prices then you could look at using your capital, including some borrowings, more productively by investing, very, very carefully in stocks paying high fully-franked dividends. The Listed Investment Companies are a good place to start.
      http://www.canberratimes.com.au/money/investing/simpler-way-to-join-the-market-20140128-31jat.html
      I have been investing in some of the companies mentioned in the article with good results.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:42PM
    • haha capacity, how do they calculate it?
      They take your word on your expenses and make sure they are about the Henderson Poverty Index (HPI published by the Melbourne Institute). They then take the higher of your figure or the HPI and subtract it from your post tax income. This figure is your maximum monthly repayment amount for capacity (ok mpost places will subtract an extra $50 or so as a safety factor then use this).

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:56PM
  • Astute Investors will be heartened that the All Ords has overtaken the ASX200 in the past few months and now is 14.5 higher. This is a sign that investors are slowly taking up more risk

    Commenter
    Astute Raider
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:47PM
  • Aussie Al: "days fully paid for the Melbourne Cup etc etc, come on Unions get real."

    What is it with the LNP. Did they miss the invention of the internet where facts can be checked in seconds? The spew out denialist crap on global warming and now this rubbish from Hockey.

    "the extra holiday at Melbourne Cup time was because workers had agreed to take a day in the “down season” for fruit canning in lieu of extra hours accumulated during the year."

    http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/feb/03/coalition-is-scapegoating-spc-ardmona-in-a-union-witch-hunt-says-liberal-mp

    Saturday, Sunday and RDO's are not "leave".

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:45PM
    • bit touchy there young man lol

      Commenter
      Aussie Al
      Location
      Adelaide
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:07PM
    • No, I'd say you have no valid response except something one would expect from a 5 year old. He he....

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:11PM
    • id expect this response from a 5 yr old:

      "No, I'd say you have no valid response except something one would expect from a 5 year old. He he...."

      Commenter
      wiseman
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:36PM
    • Who are you?

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 5:07PM
  • What the point of telling people to read more as in the update of 3:26pm when to read further you need to be a subscriber

    Commenter
    what's the point
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:45PM
  • "China has become a vital client for offshore jurisdictions. The ICIJ's databse of offshore owners and shareholders has six times as many addresses tied to China or Hong Kong than it does to the USA. "

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2014/jan/21/china-british-virgin-islands-wealth-offshore-havens

    The princelings are out of control.

    Meanwhile 50% of the population's wage earners earn less then $30/week.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:33PM
  • Fortescue CEO sees no reason for change in China's demand iron ore ( and thus no doubt other related resources)over next two years. Well managed and lucky company?
    Wish others managed as well No reason why not possible.

    Commenter
    BigKev
    Location
    Caringbah,NSW
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:31PM
  • Landlord has just increase my rent up another 10%.

    Perhaps they're losing money according to the experts here, but I am not better of paying their mortgage anyway. Sigh.

    Commenter
    sad FHB
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:23PM
    • Go and see a bank or mortgage broker and see what your borrowing capacity is. If you have been paying rent for a few years you have a record of repayment capacity. That's what lenders are interested in.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:53PM
    • Move to the Gold Coast. 2BR fully furnished apartments right near the water for $350/wk. Plus pool, gym etc.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:53PM
    • Not sure on which planet you are living, but it can not be this one as even Property Spurkers like APM are reporting rents flat and even falling. Though your name "poor FHB " tells me you are bitter little landlord trolling .

      Mitch: Last advice I would give anybody right now is "go and see how much you can borrow" and buy property. With RBA pretty much guaranteeing you that they are going to do everything to crash AUD, and that investor driven 2013 Boom over, entering market now as investor is just about silliest thing you can do. Talk about knife catching.

      Even at .875 buying either property or equities in USA is what I would be doing as in Currency alone you will have 10% gains guaranteed by end of year, thanks to FED taper and RBA madness... and if trouble in land of empty cities is half as real as suggested Pacific Peso will not be worth pap.. I mean plastic its printed on :)

      Commenter
      DJ77
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:43PM
  • 1. Buy at any price. Assets "only go up" and "double every 5-7 years".

    2. If prices go up you make money. If prices go down you remarkably also make money because falling asset prices are "bargains" and "buying opportunities".

    3. Never sell and take profits. The only way to make money is the "Buy and hold for ever" method.

    4. Do what real estate salesman, money lenders, and media organisations (who sell advertising to real estate salesman and money lenders) tell you to. Change the word "debt" to "leverage".

    5. Rot in a nothing house in a nothing suburb your whole life under a mountain of debt. It is very important for you to know your role in the financial ecosystem as the lowly debt donkey.

    Commenter
    An easy guide
    Location
    to being a financial loser
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:22PM
  • @J Populate and perish is more near to truth.

    Commenter
    xyz
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:16PM
  • if the rba doesn't cut "emergency level" interest rates again tomorrow how will we keep propping up australian asset prices?

    Commenter
    long at any price
    Location
    + leverage (debt)
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 3:10PM
  • Aussie Al: Shorter's best friend. ROFLMAO!

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:59PM
    • Is ROLFMAO allowed on this blog?

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:19PM
    • Aww.. cheer up flossy. Go read Jo Nova, make yourself feel better.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:40PM
  • You must admit it would be funny if the RBA cut "Emergency Level" interest rates again, the AUD fell, and petrol became $2 a litre...

    Commenter
    Practical Joker
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:56PM
  • SPN announcing eu350 bond
    looking at over $2BN in debt payback due for next 2 years alone...hmmm better hope for those extreme temperatures sell,sell.

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:53PM
  • Sold NWH. Sick of being a plaything for corporate shorters. Guess what - up up up and away today!

    Commenter
    Red rooster
    Location
    On the beach
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:48PM
    • Me too. But it got an upgrade today, spec buy target to $1.67

      Commenter
      GS
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:10PM
  • "A Chinese manufacturing gauge fell to a six-month low in January as output and orders slowed, adding to signs that government efforts to rein in excessive credit will cool growth in the world's second-largest economy."

    www.smh.com.au/business/china/china-manufacturing-gauge-falls-to-sixmonth-low-20140203-31wm3.html#ixzz2sE7W9idB

    Forget about the softlanding:

    "A painful decline to slower and slower growth is the best case scenario for China, says Michael Pettis, professor at Pe- king University’s Guanghua School of Management. Forget about a soft landing — even with the implementation of key economic reforms, China is in for a ‘long landing’ if it’s able to rebalance its economy."

    "During the World Economic Forum in Davos, Ray Dalio, the founder of the largest hedge fund in the world, said China’s economy was a bubble.

    Naturally, things would get ugly if it burst. That’s the worst case scenario.

    Pettis is saying the best case scenario isn’t great either."

    Which country is Australia highly leveraged to?

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:41PM
    • Stuck record, you need to get over your losses from the GFC and move on young un

      Commenter
      Stars on 45
      Location
      time warp
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:52PM
    • LOL yeah sure and you need to stick to one screen name.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:15PM
    • I was thinking the same thing...although not sure about young un...perhaps that why so upset still, went to big, lost to hard and doesnt have time to make it back

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:17PM
    • I wouldn't dismiss Ray Dalio or Michael Pettis... They both have a fairly good reputation for being right.

      Commenter
      Bye Bye Fiat Money
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:23PM
    • I'm fascinating. Isn't that why you're all talking about me? He he....

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:35PM
    • Did you miss NCM in the low 7's? Up 32%. He he... How about 30% on XRO? 75% on FMG? BBG, LYC, QAN shorts? I'm sooo poor. Sniff! ROFLMAO!

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:50PM
    • @BBFM - Pettis should be required reading in my view. His books are very good, his blog is essential and he is currently very well placed to pass comment on China and what policy types there are thinking about. I say bet against Pettis at your peril (although timing remains tough to call).

      Commenter
      Oh_Mighty_Zeus
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:01PM
  • One day the investment world here in Australia will finally realise we came out of the GFC better than anyone and despite Rudd, Gillard, Swan and Co doing there best to wreck it we still have the safest little economy in the world. I am confident the market will be bullish in 2014 despite the un-Australian way pessimists keep talking it down.

    Commenter
    Aussie Al
    Location
    Adelaide
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:38PM
    • LOL "unAustralian".

      "Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind."

      Albert Einstein

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:58PM
  • The Government got it right to knock back SPC request for $25,000,000. The staff perks are an insult to other Aussies in similar jobs. 5 days fully paid for the Melbourne Cup etc etc, come on Unions get real.

    The Shepparton Region needs these jobs so it is time for David and the Unions to get talking about cutting some excesses otherwise another Aussie Icon will be Gonski!

    Well done Unions, yet again!

    Commenter
    Aussie Al
    Location
    Adelaide
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:11PM
    • "5 days Melbourne Cup leave." Your source?

      Commenter
      Mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:11PM
    • I can confirm 5 day Melb Cup as on Sky Business this morning.

      Commenter
      GS
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:32PM
    • His vivid imagination that counts Saturday, Sunday and two rostered days off as leave.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:38PM
    • In the ALP daily Mitch aka "Financal Review

      Today in the "ALP Advertiser" @ Mitch aka Financial Review

      '

      Commenter
      Aussie Al
      Location
      Adelaide
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:41PM
    • And those greedy unionists get 4 days off at Easter. Shameful.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:06PM
  • I have some spare money. ANZ or TLS? Telstra's dividend is coming up in the next few weeks for an almost guaranteed 14 cents, and it has fallen back marginally from its recent high.

    ANZ not paying a dividend until May and it has fallen back significantly meaning potential for the price to climb back up as it gets closer to the dividend date (and then get out before the big May across the board fall).

    Other people's thoughts?

    Commenter
    Basic
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:02PM
    • Spare money? Pay down that c/card...

      Commenter
      Realist
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:22PM
    • I am buying TLS for the div. TLS expansion into Asia will probably cap its share price for a while unless the new business creates more income and if they pay a higher rate of dividend.
      Longer term the push into Asia and into tele infrastructure looks sound to me.

      Commenter
      It's All About Making Money
      Location
      Lennox Head
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:23PM
    • ANZ. The other 3 big banks are jostling over the Australian market, ANZ is expanding globally.

      If they do end up making a bid for Standard Chartered they will go through the roof.

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:29PM
    • Mate, I am on ANZ, but also waiting for WBC. If we can get them for $30 it would be a real bonus. Small lot first and take it from there. I like TLS as well but won't pay more than $5 for them atm. If I miss it doesn't bother me because I have already had my first small lot on ANZ. Good luck which ever way you go, dividends are always nice anyway!

      Commenter
      The Accountant
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:32PM
    • ask a broker....tongue in cheek
      i added some ANZ today 270 [accum] 29.77
      got TLS last week 5.06 plan run up to divd then dump it!! 5.16 today onwards to 5.30 up up.
      no interest in BKN? at current pricing...bargain barring an earnings bombshell....divd due this month also.

      Commenter
      BearShapedBull
      Location
      MugPunters Lounge
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:37PM
    • Personally I would go ANZ based on current prices

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:47PM
    • I bought some TLS last Thur for $5.06 so there is my recommendation. Also banks are a bit more prone to market mood swings, compared to Telstra which has plotted a pretty steady chart over the last two years.

      Commenter
      Learner
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:18PM
    • Ended up going ANZ (200 @ 29.87). It netted me a little bit of profit at the end of last year - will play the long game and hope it works out again.

      Commenter
      Basic
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:25PM
    • My vote is ANZ. Greater growth prospects, IMO and equally solid dividend. Only risk ironically is their Asian exposure.

      @BSB BKN looks interesting if you were confident re eps/dps but surely high earnings risk given their exposure to the commodities sector.

      Commenter
      Yin or yang
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:36PM
    • Maybe go with Telstra - to me the banks are a corretive time bomb waitin to go off

      Commenter
      sk
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:35PM
  • How dare the unpatriotic and biased ABC expose an honest Australian company trying to make a quid by putting defective trucks on the road.

    Commenter
    mitch ACT
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 2:00PM
    • If you ever had to work overseas @Mitch you would realise the ABC is absolutely useless and as a former public servant you should understand the need for the ABC to be a-political. Quite clearly they are not.

      Commenter
      Aussie Al
      Location
      Adelaide
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:16PM
    • ABC, the only source of information you can rely on. In the midst of the 2003 Canberra bushfires, when 500+ houses burned in an afternoon in the western suburbs, the ABC was the only broadcaster with information as to what was going on and where it was safe to go. The commercial stations were all broadcasting sport piped in from interstate. It's even worse now.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:58PM
    • And Aussie Al, are you saying that talking down the economy is un-Australian. You obviously have a very short memory. Don't you remember when your Liberal heroes were talking down the economy every chance they got for the last 3 years.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:02PM
  • Locally, Country Road profits up, overseas LVMH sales rebounding... I am looking forward to the next update from ORL and quietly hoping its positive

    Commenter
    Wwwish Lion
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:42PM
  • "The Abbott Government is targetting Tasmania's most bitterly contested forest flashpoint in its attempt to roll back World Heritage protection, for logging."

    www.smh.com.au/environment/conservation/government-targets-tassies-world-heritage-flashpoint-20140201-31tp9.html#ixzz2sDt1niKZ

    LNP: Eco Terrorists.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:41PM
    • Tree hugging is not vogue any more...saving banks is the new vogue

      Commenter
      Linux
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:15PM
  • "Joe Hockey has warned Australians the age of personal responsibility has begun and it's time "everyone do the heavy lifting'"

    "Australians were also told to better manage their personal finances at a time when interest rates are at unusual lows. So if people are having problems coping with interest rates now then there is a bigger systemic issues at play," Mr Hockey said.

    Too late sloppy Joe. The DEBT is outstanding. The losses are accelerating. Enjoy!

    Commenter
    Mr Obvious
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:29PM
    • You are very correct, it is too late and we needed to boot labor in 2010....I like the way you imply Joe caused most of the debt and not his predecessors.....

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:48PM
    • Joe didn't cause the debt, but he's certainly added to it.

      Liberal and Labor are basically two factions of the same useless party.

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:06PM
    • The debt is the necessary consequence of keeping the economy going through the depths of the GFC Better the debt that can be paid off than a million or more newly unemployed relying on the gov't for welfare to be found in a destroyed economy. As Liberal MP Sharman Stone said the other day on SPC, once a job or industry is gone, it's gone.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:16PM
    • Australia is a multibillionaire but is being trained to think like a pauper. The riches this continent holds are staggering .. and only a tiny population to share it with. We should be confident and investing while the rest of the world is gripped in a GFC but instead we are determined to create our own..

      Commenter
      Lean Too
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:37PM
    • So the policy reset to address Australian debt [public n private] looks like what joey?
      Austerity for the plebs?
      n bank corporate welfare maintained?
      Defence spending untouched?

      Commenter
      mushroom
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:58PM
  • Some honest perspective is required on China not just throw away lines that may influence uneducated people
    All these doomsayers regarding China should actually save some of their money for a trip to China and ask westerners who have worked there for 20 years what they think about the future of China.
    Particularly ask them about the REAL infrastructure requirements of the country. Any basic assessment would show there is about 50 years of hard work ahead of the Chinese just to get basic infrastructure serviceable in whole country. Trillions of dollars required.
    Fortunately they are using their surpluses to invest in this infrastructure unlike the US which has just wasted any surpluses and won’t face the fact that their own roads etc. are badly in need of repairs but they have no money.
    Anybody that calls infrastructure uneconomic must live in a different world. Perhaps a reference to the thirties in the US and how New York became a major metropolis might help them to understand??

    Commenter
    Harry Rogers
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:28PM
    • You don't have to have worked there for 20 years. Just a one hour drive out of any of the major cities and it's pretty obvious that the vast majority still live in third world conditions. To even remotely equate China with the US on an economic/power basis is utterly laughable, and will be for many decades to come, if not forever.

      Commenter
      Davo
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:11PM
    • You must also agree the mining boom surpluses the Howard govt gifted in the form of middle class welfare which inflated the property market should have been invested in the infrastructure Australia so badly needs.

      Commenter
      nolongerconfused
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:17PM
    • Yes the " the Howard govt gifted middle class welfare" was purely political.

      I wonder if there will be a time when either parties will genuinely look to the good of all. I suspect it's not in the nature of humans or only once in a century do we get LEADERS.

      Commenter
      Harry Rogers
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:22PM
    • @Harry, LEADERS with VISION. Keating was the last one. The trouble is he never tires of telling us that.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:11PM
  • Bios scan reveals slight upwards for AHZ after phase 1 herpes results,BNO boosted early by clinical move to phase 2 for ovarian cancer trials {BNC105} hit 0.775 before profit takers....PBT keeps heading north after speeding ticket for the roadshow.

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:28PM
  • "Seven Axes Today Tonight" - Finally, now just cut the rest of the rubbish on Australian TV, I guess ACA should be next, then any form of reality show (some of the cooking ones can stay if they maintain standards)

    Commenter
    Wwwish Lion
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:24PM
    • Sadly any producer will tell you that they only produce shows that people want and they have tried to up the intelligence level beyond ground zero but have had no success.

      Commenter
      Harry Rogers
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:30PM
    • I hate to agree on this but yes, the unthinking masses are the problem....

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:50PM
    • Does that mean that the paid advertorials will be shifted and presented as news.

      Commenter
      mitch ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:50PM
    • What are you talking about mitch??? They already do that anyway....I enjoy having a coke as I drive to my nearest caltex service station to pick up my copy of the Age on a Sunday

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:17PM
  • Any1 know what date the TLS 1/2 yr accounts will be announced...usually round 7th feb? up up

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:22PM
    • 12th Feb

      Commenter
      cash converter
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:46PM
  • ANZ might be regretting its push into Asia right about now. Emerging economies are getting hammered.

    Now below my short entry and in the money by 8.5%.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:21PM
    • Its ok Allan, we have the April spike and May drop coming in a few months for ANZ...

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:32PM
    • Yes Australia has been good at digging stuff up and shipping it to Asia but how have they gone with businesses that require even basic competence and genuine international business skills?

      Australian banks haven't fared well overseas where they have to operate outside of a price fixing government backed four firm oligopoly.

      People have been saying for years "It's not just mining, Australia can provide financial services and a whole range of professional services to Asia". Show me one significant example? Show me one significant example where I could have bought a stock listed in Australia that has performed well by providing complex services in Asia?

      Commenter
      SE Asia
      Location
      Business Analyst
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:38PM
    • @SE Asia. There will be examples but alas I cant think of any. We did invent WiFi.

      Commenter
      Yin or yang
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:17PM
  • "...large numbers of dilapidated vehicles that should never have been on the road".

    This must really attract a big prison sentence for the owner....plus hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for the affected families in the tragedy.

    Commenter
    Judge
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:18PM
  • I can see a circuit breaker of this downtrend being a ton of US earnings results this week. If they're no good, then down further we go for the next 4 nights. Then fri jobs!

    We can basically go either way from here... Back down to test 4950 or back up to break through 5300.

    Commenter
    GS
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:17PM
  • 270 ANZ @ 29.77

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:09PM
  • *pricks ears up, sniffs around TWE, sits, waits...

    Commenter
    Hyena
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:08PM
    • Even hyenas have standards. THe meat is too rank.

      Commenter
      Yin or yang
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:08PM
  • Al Gore forecast in 2008 that Arctic summers would be ice free by 2013. Contrary to the alarmist predictions ice cover expanded last year by over 40% to now total 5.1 million square kilometers.
    Leave the science to the scientists,says Al.
    Stop the useless carbon tax.

    Commenter
    Chumlee
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:05PM
    • + 1

      and agreed by Kim Beasley!!!!!

      Commenter
      Aussie Al
      Location
      Adelaide
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:23PM
    • On what basis do you make the extraordinary claim that Arctic ice has significantly expanded???

      Is that why the Russians, the Canadians, the Scandinavians and the Americans are racing to stake claims in the Arctic - an area that is rapidly OPENING UP to shipping?!

      Al is right, leave science - something which Daily Telegraph readers and other Murdoch brown nosers have zero knowledge of - to scientists. When 9 out of the last 10 years have broken records, and ostriches believe nothing is happening, it makes one dread where we are heading.

      It's funny how we place so much faith in science in so many areas of our lives, but on this one issue so many people trust Rupert Murdoch's storm troopers rather than scientists.

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:33PM
    • http://www.skepticalscience.com/Has-Arctic-sea-ice-recovered-intermediate.htm

      "Arctic sea ice has been steadily thinning, even in the last few years while the surface ice (eg - sea ice extent) increased slightly. Consequently, the total amount of Arctic sea ice in 2008 and 2009 are the lowest on record."

      Commenter
      Basic
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:37PM
    • Don't quote numbers that favour the other side if you want any credibility:

      "Sea ice cover in the Arctic has shrunk to one of its smallest extents on record, bringing the days of an entirely ice-free Arctic during the summer a step closer.

      The annual sea ice minimum of 5.099m sq km reached last Friday was not as extreme as last year, when the collapse of ice cover broke all previous records."

      http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/sep/18/arctic-sea-ice-shrinks-record-low

      Here is a simple picture that might be easier to understand:

      http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2013/9/19/1379558039734/Kinnard_2011_sea_ice.jpg

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:40PM
    • @Chumlee, please cite your source.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:49PM
    • And in actual fact Al Gore said:

      " These figures are fresh. Some of the models suggest to Dr [Wieslav] Maslowski that there is a 75 per cent chance that the entire north polar ice cap, during the summer months, could be completely ice-free within five to seven years.”

      That's was at the Copenhagen climate change summit in 2009.

      And here is the model that looks dead on the money:

      http://www.truth-out.org/images/images_2013_09/2013_0919mel_3.jpg

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:53PM
    • Basic,your figures are 5 years old. You and Fred can find the truth at the NASA website,where the scientists say that Arctic sea ice increased from 3.61 million sq klm in 2012 to the current level of 5.1 million sq klm.My summary statement is correct.
      Leave the science to the scientists.

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:58PM
    • LOL Chumlee!

      Your twisted example was a typical example of an ostrich trying to distort science!

      You said NASA was your source so I actually checked out what NASA had to say.

      Yes indeed Arctic ice increased after 2012, for the following simple reason.

      According to NASA, arctic sea in 2012 was the LOWEST ON RECORD!! It increased from that record low to be the 6th lowest on record in 2013!!

      You were either deliberately manipulating information or are unbelievably ignorant.

      Oh and my source is cited below :)

      http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/arctic-sea-ice-minimum-in-2013-is-sixth-lowest-on-record/

      http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/feb/01/arctic-city-new-route-china

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:20PM
    • And how thick is that summer ice. Would it support a polar bear or leave a sea-bird floundering.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:30PM
    • That's right ignore the evidence. Arctic sea ice is disappearing rapidly and climate change deniers are spouting crap as usual.

      Expansion by 40% still brings it to alarmingly low levels. The alarmists are right. You have provided nothing to the contrary.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:32PM
    • And no, your summary statement is not correct. Al Gore said 75% chance by 2014-2106.

      Jo Nova fan boys really need to wake up.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:35PM
    • Fred, I'd go with unbelievably ignorant. Cheers. Al.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:57PM
    • Over 5 MILLION square kilometers and growing rapidly is a long way from even a 75% chance of ''ice free''.
      Al Gore made a fortune spruiking his alarmist statements over 2008 and 2009,the crux of which are now proving to be wrong. He first stated it Dec,13,2008 and said within 5 years.The figures of ice growth I stated are correct.

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:59PM
    • Can anybody direct me to a solid company that intends to use the Arctic for year round shipping between the north Atlantic and north Pacific? I'd like to invest.

      Commenter
      Catch 22
      Location
      Northwest Passage
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:11PM
    • Where's your source? You don't have one.

      And that is the winter figure you're quoting. Ice free in Summer is what Al Gore said and it is perilously close to that now going by the trend graph I posted.

      It's ok Chumlee no need to admit your ignorance. It's obvious.

      "High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email ftsales.support@ft.com to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/f1f5b1ac-8a90-11e3-9c29-00144feab7de.html#ixzz2sEX1A5Tu

      "The Arctic sea ice has not been recovering since its record minimum in September 2012, and is still on a clear downward trend. Although the extent of Antarctic sea ice has increased, due in part to changes in wind patterns, the volume of the continent’s land-based ice has been declining at a rate of nearly 150bn tonnes per year over the past decade."

      Bob Ward, Policy and Communications Director, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, London School of Economics, UK

      Live on in ignorance but don't expect to get away with it on here.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:20PM
  • anyone wanna take a stab at the future of the GBR? is it too late
    https://www.getup.org.au/campaigns/great-barrier-reef--3/reef-fighting-fund/reef-fighting-fund?t=dXNlcmlkPTgyMzMzNSxlbWFpbGlkPTM2NTk=

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 1:05PM
    • It's fate was sealed on 7 September 2013. Environmental damage can't be undone like other sloppy LNP slogans.

      Commenter
      Basic
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:28PM
    • The dredging and off-shore dumping program will take 6 years. Bill Shorten should take a page from Tony Abbott's anti-carbon tax strategy and announce that the next Labor gov't will allow the dredging to continue but ban offshore dumping. This whole project will be financed by borrowings. I can't imagine any bank being willing to lend money for a project that could face a major hurdle like that half-way through. Hopefully the falling price of coal will finish the rest of the project off.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:29PM
  • 5000 BNO @ 0.68

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:59PM
  • MQG the so called millionaires factory is back to the same price in real terms as it was over 10 years ago.

    Seems the millionaires were created at the expense of shareholders.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:45PM
    • Paper millionaires....i've got 10 million...
      bits of paper.
      Pet hate for MQG and all their market manipulation grrrr

      Commenter
      BearShapedBull
      Location
      MugPunters Lounge
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:03PM
    • It is still just a factory employing factory workers, dressed in suits but still obeying commands like good little slaves pretending to have control over their mediocre and pitiful lifes...My respect always go to the Business Owners, responsible, disciplined, hard-working, talented to name a few.

      Commenter
      Market Guru
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:24PM
    • You're just upset you've been trying to short it from $17 all the way up
      Hehe

      Commenter
      Laughing
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:09PM
    • No I'm pretty sure I've upset you and that's why you re pulling numbers out of your behind. Good! TOFLMAO!

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:41PM
    • Yes that's right it was never $17!!!! Lol
      How goods the fishing on this site.
      How much have you lost????

      Commenter
      Laughing
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:35PM
    • Nothing. I didn't buy any so I didn't pay $90 like you.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 5:12PM
  • "The study of 15-hundred households also found 46 per cent have less than $5000 dollars in savings, while 11 per cent are spending more than they earn. A further five per cent are using equity in their own home to make ends meet month to month

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/business/markets-live/markets-live-focus-shifts-to-earnings-20140203-31vog.html#ixzz2sDagglMn"

    And Joe Hockey is bleating things like "the age of entitlement is over, the age of personal responsibility has begun".

    I don't think I've seen a more out of touch government since Howard's mob.

    Commenter
    Basic
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:29PM
    • It was Howard's mob that gave birth to the "age of personal entitlement" with a whole range of middle-class welfare to buy votes while at the same time allowing the single age pension to fall to below poverty levels. Rudd had to increase it by $13pw. Now that the revenue from the construction phase of the mining boom is over they should be looking at reaping the benefits of the export phase. But what do they do but abolish the MRRT. They should have fixed it. To say that the MRRT would have stifled investment in mining was an absolute nonsense in the face of all of the cash that was being spent on the construction phase. So now the little guy has to pay to make the big guys richer. Equality Liberal-style.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:51PM
  • RE 11:36am "15-hundred"

    I must say, I've never seen that before!

    Commenter
    GS
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:22PM
    • Why don't you guys exchange emails and enjoy an all day every day love in and let the rest of us deal with the real issue of making money in the share market
      You should also ad LV to your screen name to attest that you are labour voters. Nothing wrong with that so wear it with pride

      Commenter
      BigKev
      Location
      Caringbah,NSW
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:30PM
    • Did you reply to the wrong post? Spec savers? ;)

      My comment relates to the 1500/"15-hundred" format!

      I only discuss shares on here, not interested in politics!

      Commenter
      GS
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:55PM
    • Yeah....wrong post. Referring to Mitch and labour mates....sorry for confusion

      Commenter
      BigKev
      Location
      Caringbah,NSW
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:33PM
  • Anyone watch EHL? It has a long term recent trend of running up 25% or more, often on no news whatsover from the company, and then quickly collapses back to where it started. Obviously some good trading opportunities. What puzzles me is why there are buyers at the high points when it's pretty obvious that business conditions for the company are very challenging and the downside SP risk has to be pretty high? OR is it about broker recommendations?

    Commenter
    Yin or yang
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:21PM
    • 2 yr chart says its a long way down,,,after 2 yrs of mining boom,haymaking time [but SP decline],now into very testing times, divd yeild all but sucked out with that 6% up today...unsustainable and [eps/dps] not expected to last thru 2014/15.
      2c worth

      Commenter
      BearShapedBull
      Location
      MugPunters Lounge
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:35PM
    • I think the consensus would be there will be no earnings or dividend for quite some time.

      Commenter
      Yin or yang
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:06PM
  • "So what should we make of the fall in building approvals for December"

    might help me get leased out?

    Commenter
    empty flat
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:20PM
  • @12:06pm on JPMorgan & McAleese. Tonight's 4Corners, ABC at 8:30pm, is about the trucking industry. I wonder how exposed and anxious JP is about McAleese.

    Commenter
    mitch of ACT
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:17PM
    • Reckon they're exposed alright with the stock Mitch.
      Dunno how or how deep.

      Commenter
      mushy
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:28PM
  • might kick the tyres on some empty flats today. see if i can help some landlords out with a few low ball rent offers on empty million dollar apartments he he

    Commenter
    feral renter
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:11PM
    • We'd rather have them empty ,thanks , tax breaks and all.

      Commenter
      Sullys Foot is Down
      Location
      South Freo
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:26PM
    • In return for the tax breaks you should have to fill them with refugees.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:18PM
  • The death of the manufacturing industry in Australia, (and agriculture) is really going to come back to bite us.

    We'll be a tin pot third world country soon, with NOTHING to sell but iron ore (of which there's becoming a glut), and houses and soy lattes to each other.

    Commenter
    Fred
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:08PM
    • "tin pot', after Friday's ideologically blind decision on SPC we won't even be able to put things in a tin any more. Heaven help us in the next war.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:15PM
    • Have the workers of SPC offered to cut their pay to fund it or do they just want my taxes?

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:16PM
    • Holden workers took a big pay cut to keep Holden here and it's still going. SPC workers are not high wage earners and Abbott's reference that restrucuring the EBA would solve all of the problems is not supported by his own MP Sharman Stone. How dare she do the honest thing and contradict her leader. Pity SPC doesn't make chocolate or have John Howard's brother on the board.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:35PM
    • Wwwish Lion, when the head of JP Morgan gets his pay doubled after the bank had to pay $20 billion in fines, why should a worker doing a menial job and getting 30-40 grand a year take a cut? Why is it only the worker and never management who has to make sacrifices?

      The whole basis of Abbott's decision to give a death sentence to the fruit industry was that CCA was a very profitable company, so if they have so much money why should the workers take a pay cut? Seems to be a bit hypocritical to me!

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:42PM
    • @Fred, I agree with you re: management and boards...
      My point is, if CCL need extra to make the business case work, it should not be my tax money to do it....is a pay cut better than a job loss?

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:24PM
    • Mitch, GMH's workers did not take a "big cut", especially in the light of the enormous increases that were agreed to in 2012 and a number of other conditions.. They agreed to something far more modest and a 3 year freeze. Too many good years had made them complacent about the long term viability of a business that was rapidly losing market share but this is an attitude right across the board in Australia from workers unions right up to our massively overpaid but generally second rate business elite. At the moment we have the Big End of Town's muppets performing loudly in Canberra's Big Top, who decry largess to the car industry etc, but are blind and deaf when it comes to the massive multi billion dollar gifts the government doles out every year to the rich, to corporates and to property investors through various tax concessions that the ordinary tax payers must make up for. Gillard, Rudd, Joe and Tony - phoneys, all of them!

      Commenter
      Catch 22
      Location
      tweedle dum and tweedle dee
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:26PM
    • people talk dutch disease which is BS.
      Its australian disease, remember PJK's banana republic?
      Have a good look around, we're standing in it.

      Commenter
      mushy
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:35PM
  • You ok Bargain Hunter?

    Commenter
    Conviction Seller
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:08PM
  • Are these predictions of doom re: China similar to preceding ones such as the great financial crisis of 2007, too bad the media then turned stupid and started talking up the very real damage the labor government set about inflicting upon all of us. In fact the media praised the destruction of our financial base. This is where my mind is going would China allow their economy to go bottoms up? and for how long? considering the number of people who are now expecting to attain a certain level of lifestyle. I'm taking these reports with a huge grain of salt, which I wish I had used during the other GFC.

    Commenter
    so sick of doom and gloom which for all intent and purpose is about political ideology.
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 12:01PM
    • long kleenex shares?

      Commenter
      doggy dog
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:12PM
    • I agree with u about the labor govt. i was strongly against their bail out of the banks and putting a floor under the real estate market.I don't believe that in a capitalist economy that that's the govt's job.
      They should have let the residential realestate market go. we would be in a great position now with an exit of moribund bank(s) and a normal realestate market and lots of opportunity for other buisnesses to flourish.
      Instead now we have endless years of paying taxes to keep a perpetuation of this ridiculous situation. with 4 big corrupt colluding banks soaking up all the disposable income of australia and a massive immigration program.

      Commenter
      J.
      Location
      Syd.
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:25PM
  • Todays chart is like WA....Blood in the water, shark fin appears and WA kill it off...

    Commenter
    Wwwish Lion
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:56AM
    • Good analogy. I wonder what bait that shark was going after and will the sellers toss in more of it.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:26PM
  • Just had a look at Country Road after the article earlier...Huge bid-offer spread, and extremely low trades/liquidity.
    Just interesting to see for a brand most will recognise.

    Commenter
    Wwwish Lion
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:49AM
  • In The Age today, "Sydney leads property price jump". Big buying power coming from the Chinese like these determined 16 Chinese bidders for a flat. One commentator suggested they are getting their money out of China to safe places like Australia.

    Source: http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2014/01/it-was-a-shock-when-16-chinese-bid-wildly-for-the-flat/

    Commenter
    Gordon Gekko
    Location
    Greg Coffey World
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:47AM
  • How's BOQ today? You ok gee up?

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:43AM
  • ''Since the PMI stayed above the 50 point level,it shows the basic trend of stable economic GROWTH will not change.'' Zhang Liqun,economist at the Development Research Centre. Most analysts believe China can sustain it's economic growth in line with last year's 7.5% target. Good news for investors.
    Leave the economics to the economists.

    Commenter
    Chumlee
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:42AM
    • Like Australia's most distinguished economist?

      Indeed.

      "Professor Garnaut predicted the rise of China, but is now warning Australians to prepare for a serious decline in living standards as the resources boom gives way to falling export prices and a slump in the development of mines. "

      http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2012/s3601577.htm

      China's growth at 7% is anaemic. It equates to an extra $2/wk pa for 80% of the population.

      And the move away from uneconomic infrastructure spending to services will be a major blow to Australia's economy which has been sacrificed by successive governments for short term gain.

      Not only that but the end of the resources investment boom will decimate jobs which is primarily how Australians benefitted from the boom. The production phase will see jobs reduced by 75% and 70% of the profits going overseas.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:38PM
    • When something grows at 7%,it will be twice the size in a little over 10 years.
      This cannot be described as anaemic.

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:11PM
    • Of course it can because it is off a very low base.

      Leave economics to the economists.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:23PM
    • Oh and after 10 years of growth at 7% it will have a GDP per capita of less than one fifth of the US GDP per capita.

      And that GDP will be skewed by the billionaire princelings who are robbing the country blind.

      The bottom 90% in China will probably have a GDP per capita ten times lower than that of the US.

      In other words, not enough to keep the peasants from marching on Beijing. No matter how many activists they lock up.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:28PM
    • China is now the 2nd largest economy in the world. ''Low base'' . clearly not.
      Leave the mathematics to the mathematicians Al.

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:46PM
    • Chumlee do you not understand "per capita"? It might be the second largest economy in the world but not even remotely close on a per capita basis. Demographics 101 mate.

      Commenter
      Davo
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:28PM
    • LOL poor old chumlee. Fooled by the simplest of concepts.

      Having 500M poor people is nothing to be proud of.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:17PM
    • Show some respect Allan. Chumlee can pick the bottom of WBC. Just ask him...

      Commenter
      Offensive
      Location
      Lineman
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:20PM
    • I don't care about per capita,the Gross number is more important.

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:21PM
    • Great I'm looking forward to your explanation why you believe the gross number is more important.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 4:43PM
  • CFX SPP shares came through. Got about 65% of the shares I applied for. I'm happy :)

    Commenter
    Basic
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:29AM
    • I'm happier that I got my refund for excess shares applied for by cleared electronic refund rather than by cheque, which is usually the way. As for CFX itself, it's a trust that invests in property for the retail sector. I see bleak times ahead for retail, particularly now that we have a gov't intending to cut gov't spending thereby reducing household disposable income. The only attractive thing about this SPP was the discount of the purchase price to the trading price, which was reducing daily. I'm happy to have gotten my money back with a small profit.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:48AM
    • Well I got about 15%... $200 profit VS $1600 or so! Unhappy! :(

      Happy I got the electronic deposit today though! :)

      Commenter
      GS
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:25PM
    • Country Roads result doesnt support a bleak time for retail? but i guess they are factoring in the xmas bonanza,JBH NPAT/EPS/Total sales increased....some are good some are bad.DJS a hoax,sack the board for being so lame...they never keep the shareholders in the picture.

      Commenter
      BearShapedBull
      Location
      MugPunters Lounge
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:37PM
    • @GS I think CFX did us a favour. Had the SPP been issued in full then the selling pressure to take a quick profit would have been much heavier. Since the SPP had to be paid for the AllOrds has fallen by 122 points. More bargains about now than then. You might have lost money buying some of them in the meantime.

      Commenter
      mitch ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:57PM
  • In a deja vu kinda way this story really made me question where we are headed in the year of the horse? Flogging it when it appears motionless.....they just can't come to terms with all the trash they are still holding [securitization]muhahha.Here we go again.
    "Wall Street’s latest trillion-dollar idea involves slicing and dicing debt tied to single-family homes and selling the bonds to investors around the world."
    read it here
    http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/01/29/wall-streets-new-housing-bonanza/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:25AM
    • Dead set BSB it had to happen.
      No regulation to stop it.

      Commenter
      mushroom
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 3:16PM
  • I cant imagine how a company can explain to shareholders their rationale for political donations. Even viewed cynically the amounts involved are too small to effect policy. eg. WES to Liberal Party - $500K. Or maybe it's just a way of signalling which side you support.

    Commenter
    Yin or yang
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:20AM
    • How is this legal?

      Commenter
      JohnBB
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:42AM
    • Or, these clods are more easily bought than we thought. My view is that as a group the entire political class are easily gormless enough to be cheaply bought.

      Commenter
      Oh_Mighty_Zeus
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:24PM
  • Treading water ..5200 here we come again,,,sustained,probably not.

    Commenter
    BearShapedBull
    Location
    MugPunters Lounge
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:19AM
  • 11.10am Like the way the graph is heading.
    Seems not everyone is bothered with the meltdown in China. Mike Smith is thinking of making more inroads into the market over there. He doesn't,seem to worried.

    Commenter
    The Pest
    Location
    Lowood QLD
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:13AM
  • Allan and co still in denial about the property boom.

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/sydney-leads-home-property-price-jump-20140203-31w0u.html

    Commenter
    No Vision
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:07AM
    • Yes you should definitely buy more!

      Commenter
      Money
      Location
      where your mouth is
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:29AM
    • No vision you are in denial. Sydney has barely beaten inflation for a decade.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:36AM
    • Yes, I agree...I think Sydney real estate market is really cheap and low, very affordable...Buy buy buy! (suckers).

      Commenter
      Banker
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:39AM
    • "Mr Lawless said he did not expect the rapid rise in Sydney and Melbourne's prices to continue as the two cities were "now well advanced in their growth cycle"

      LOL. they are 30-40% overpriced based on real net returns of zero.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:41AM
  • The US been pumping billions into their QE measures for ages. Japan's "Abenomics" did the same, and with a view - to raise inflation to 2.0%. Inflation has risen in Japan, but not so in the US. Why?

    Commenter
    Gordon Gekko
    Location
    Greg Coffey World
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 11:02AM
    • Of course the purse strings are still tightly closed. People just dont believe " the ecomony is showing signs of life" . People are scared and are trying to save like hell for what they beieve will happen, THE BIG RECESSION. Unfortunatly piddley peoples savings wont stop the crunch. Jut hope like hell it doesnt happen !!

      Commenter
      Sullys Foot is Down
      Location
      South Freo
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:58AM
    • True Sully, but let's look at what inflation is: It's the increase in the money supply and credit relative to GDP that results in rising prices. The US's money supply and credit have swelled astronomically, yet GDP has been modest, most recently up 3.2% for the quarter. Yet, it's not showing up in inflation as the US's inflation has dropped from 3% in 2011, to 1.5% as of late. So, this begs the question...where is this money actually going to? GG.

      Commenter
      Gordon Gekko
      Location
      Greg Coffey World
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:58PM
  • "Investors beware: there’s no immediate end in sight to the pain in emerging markets, as the pace of money rushing out of those markets is increasing rapidly, reckon the global asset allocation team at Société Générale."

    Dog days.

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:45AM
  • "The man who made the acronym BRICs famous and brought global attention to emerging markets believes commodity-led economies such as Australia will suffer as China edges towards slower growth"

    Housing boom!

    Commenter
    Allan
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:43AM
    • POP !!

      Commenter
      Sullys Foot is Down
      Location
      South Freo
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:25AM
    • As he points out, with the death of a manufacturing industry in Australia we will have nowhere else to turn, unlike other export economies like Mexico.

      When we're being compared unfavourably to Mexico, you know we're not looking good.

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:03PM
    • Australia should have been going the way of Germany and Japan, replacing low end assembly manufacturing with high end technical components that are shipped to China for lower end assembly

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:27PM
    • But Wwwish Lion, unlike Germany and Japan, we are governed by free market extremists. I agree we SHOULD be turning to high end manufacturing, but in Australia 'we leave it to the market to decide' and the market doesn't want any manufacturing in Australia.

      Countries like Germany have the vision to invest in strategic industries, we do not, because the market does not distinguish between a strategic national industry and an expendable industry.

      Commenter
      Fred
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:01PM
  • ANZ looked like it at broken through support levels at $30 but is now bouncing back. I'm a buyer at slightly lower prices - may not happen.

    Commenter
    Yin or yang
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:40AM
  • Chinese shadow banking problems...?
    That will be nothing to the real problems about to turn up....Stay tuned.

    Commenter
    Mack
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:34AM
    • Such as? Or is this just a catch all statement so you can claim no matter what happens?

      Commenter
      Wwwish Lion
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:47AM
    • He needs my crystal ball. I made 3 predictions on Thursday about upcoming trading. All of them correct. I said the DOW would go up by 100+ points overnight, it went up by 109, I said that window dressers would push the market up at the end of trade on Friday, they did but only by 5 points and that would disappear first thing Monday and it's nowhere in sight now. As for the future, I agree with the WAM research at 11:36am that the market could fall by 5 to 10% by the end of the quarter due to poor profit results. The only sector that will do well will be housing and associated suppliers. The banks will benefit from that but be driven down by overseas uncertainty. I've taken a lot of cash out of the market and am now only lightly exposed.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:04PM
    • At 11:12 am "The Cormack Foundation, a Victorian-based group that fundraises and invests in the stock market on behalf of the Liberal Party, received a total of $3.3 million in donations from corporate Australia in the 2012-13 financial year and gave $1.5 million to the party."
      I couldn't believe what I was reading when I read that. Is it true. An organisation invests in the stock market on behalf of the Liberal Party, ie on behalf of politicians, the people who make it their business to selectively leak information for their own benefit. The regulators should be looking at investments by groups such as these and comparing the timing and direction of the investment with gov't announcements. Politicians may be wary of investing using inside information to benefit themselves, too easy to trace and enough have been caught red-handed, but for the benefit of the Party by a third party is a whole different matter.

      Commenter
      mitch of ACT
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:08PM
  • "The sharemarket has opened lower"

    I'm busy today watching Super Bowl XLVIII. Just want to say good luck to all the "bargain hunters" with their "buying opportunities".

    Commenter
    Gordon Akman
    Location
    Broadbeach
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:19AM
    • So true...
      If you don't know what you are doing, I'd stay well away from the market for a few years.....
      Bargains or not, we've seen nothing yet.

      Commenter
      Bye Bye Fiat Money
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:00AM
    • Game over. SEA 22-0
      Denver's first play really set the tone

      Commenter
      igroki
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:40AM
  • "China could trigger global meltdown"

    Global economic turmoil that would cause hardship and suffering to millions.

    I Like it!
    SHORT$$$$$$$$$$
    GIFTS

    Enjoy!

    Commenter
    Bull
    Location
    Trap
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:17AM
    • The abyss of the GREAT DEPRESSION. ASX slides to 3000

      Short, Short, Short. Easiest $100k per hour Ive ever earned

      Commenter
      igroki
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:21AM
  • @confused. She'll be right. Australia's the best IS THE PROBLEM. You are confused.

    Commenter
    JohnBB
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:13AM
  • These analysts must be getting desperate with all their “predictions”. Now we are told countries in which it is cheap to invest! Tops of the list are Russia, Hungary and Turkey.
    Well what an insightful comment I wish the analyst well in his investments in these countries and feel sure he will have no trouble recovering any funds that may go missing or perhaps just lose 20% of the currency value overnight .
    The big worry is that some investors may actually take this analysts advice!
    It’s now clear that the whole analyst market is set on attacking China every 3 months. Now it’s their banking system which has had problems before and survived major collapses. Is this just jealousy over the past 20 years that China has raised 750 million people from poverty and continues to do so under a one party politically managed economic system?

    Commenter
    Harry Rogers
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 10:06AM
    • Exactly,Obama and the USA constantly display an anti-China bias. They will never give them kudos for doing a good job.

      Commenter
      Chumlee
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:57AM
    • "over the past 20 years that China has raised 750 million people from poverty"

      Their "poverty line" is defined as $1.80/day.

      http://www.worldbank.org/en/country/china/overview

      And they still have @ 130M living below that. 500M are still dirt poor and can't afford to see a doctor.

      Commenter
      Allan
      Location
      Prahran
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 2:00PM
  • A big swing in FGE on Friday from 15% down to up for the day. Looking at the buying, it seems that someone is taking a large stake in FGE at these prices. It could be someone looking for a quick profit or maybe building a stake before a takeover offer. I am not sure. Anyone have an idea who would be a suitor for a takeover of FGE? I don't hold at this time but looking forward to today and may take a small stake if it looks like takeover is starting.

    Commenter
    GeoPerth
    Location
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 9:41AM
    • Stay well away I think manipulation by the current stakeholders is happening

      Commenter
      Pete the pom
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:01AM
    • Black Rock were a big purchaser early in the new year but who can tell what their intentions were. Personally I can think of much better takeover targets. Either way I'd expect FGE will continue to be a roller coaster ride.

      Commenter
      Yin or yang
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:04AM
    • Dream on GeoPerth...will be around 50 cents soon.

      Commenter
      Happy hippy
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:09AM
    • The flood of people and money from outside before the GFC didn't stop the Irish and Spanish property markets imploding.

      Commenter
      Enjoy
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:52AM
    • Having worked in big Corps at top level finance and having suspicious large investments to be concerned about from time to time ,you cannot find out who is doing that. You can only guess. Best chance is to watch the brokers involved as some raiders/investors tend to use the same brokers. You probably know all this but worth repeating

      Commenter
      BigKev
      Location
      Caringbah,NSW
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 1:15PM
  • "Brisbane's inner-city rental market has had a sluggish start to the year with the vacancy rate increasing to 4.1 per cent, new figures show."

    "there remains a glut of rental stock in central Queensland mining towns"

    "The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone rose to 7.7 per cent"

    "Mackay also recorded a vacancy rate of 7.7 per cent"

    Enjoy!

    Commenter
    Chuckling
    Location
    Charles
    Date and time
    February 03, 2014, 9:25AM
    • meanwhile in Sydney. http://news.domain.com.au/domain/real-estate-news/unliveable-redfern-cottage-sells-for-1-million-20140201-31tq8.html

      When do this madness stop ? Even with the 30% deposit, I can't even secure a place within 45 minutes to Sydney without borrowing a ridiculous amount of money.

      Commenter
      sad FHB
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:12AM
    • No problem. Just turn the population tap on further. No negative consequences. After all what else do we do but populate?

      Commenter
      JohnBB
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:31AM
    • If we have to populate (apparently we do) never let migrants settle in our choked cities.

      Why do we have to populate again? .

      Commenter
      JohnBB
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 10:35AM
    • @sad fhb. When they finally, finally, finally realise the biggest threat to their welfare in every single way and that Of their kids and their kids is growing population.

      Commenter
      JohnBB
      Location
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 11:18AM
    • Populate or perish?
      i think a case of populate "and" perish.
      I would love to see a comprehensive study done to see what the carrying capacity of our cities really is?
      The terms of the study would include and case analysis of our society without the use of fossil fuels, either they are too rare ot too expensive, a case study with some "new" form of energy production ... so on and so on. How can we make any descisions without tis information.
      The only thing i know for sure is that things are not going to be "more of the same".
      Thats an impossiblity.

      Commenter
      J.
      Location
      Syd.
      Date and time
      February 03, 2014, 12:17PM
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