Afternoon trading August 21

  1. 8,876 Posts.

    Thanks @Bowser. and morning crew.

    Half-time round-up:

    A week of big moves continued with a 72-point setback for the ASX as key company earnings disappointed and local traders responded to a downturn on Wall Street.

    The ASX 200 skidded 1.1 per cent to 6473 after US stocks broke a three-session winning streak overnight. The local index has moved at least 60 points every day this week, bouncing 140 points before today's session. Volatility has picked up dramatically this month as the effects of the US-China trade war fuelled recession fears, reflected in tumbling bond yields.

    The consumer staples sector - normally a bastion of dull stability - steered the market lower as A2M Milk Company released disappointing earnings and Tassal Group tapped the market for funds. Shares in A2M plunged 12.8 per cent after the company's $281 million full-year profit missed the analyst consensus by 3 per cent. Seafood farmer Tassal fell 4.7 per cent after announcing it had raised $108 million through a placement to increase its prawn production.

    The industrials sector was weighed down by poorly-received updates from Brambles and Emeco Holdings. Supply-chain logistics company Brambles slumped 9.4 per cent after warning that slowing global growth would limit future revenue growth. Earth-moving rental company Emeco dropped 12.5 per cent despite more than doubling its net profit after tax to $63.1 million.

    Not all was gloom in the current earnings season. Fleet manager McMillan Shakespeare surged 18 per cent after announcing an off-market share buyback. jumped 12 per cent after increasing its full-year profit by almost 3 per cent to $131.3 million despite a decline in ads for new cars. Logistics software firm Wisetech put on 9.6 per cent after topping earnings expectations.

    BHP was the biggest drag on the index following a negative reaction on overseas markets to yesterday's profit miss. The Big Australian fell 2.1 per cent as the local listing played catch-up with overnight moves in New York and London. Rio Tinto shed 2.4 cent.

    CBA was the best of the banks with a loss of 0.4 per cent. ANZ gave up 1.1 per cent, NAB 0.9 per cent and Westpac 1.6 percent.

    What's hot today and what's not:

    Hot today: up there Cazaly. Shares in the mining junior with the same name as the footy player celebrated in Mike Brady's song soared this morning after the company announced a deal to sell its Parker Range iron ore project to Mineral Resources for $20 million, plus royalties. The sale proceeds represent almost twice the company's market capitalisation before the announcement. Shares in the company were lately up 1.9 cents or 76 per cent at 4.4 cents.

    Not today: shares in Nearmap more than doubled earlier this year as the company added an artificial intelligence offering and its mapping technology gained traction with business users in the US. However, a 45 per cent increase in revenue to $77 million announced this morning did not translate into profit, with the company revealing a $14.9 million net loss for the year, well short of the market expectation for a profit of $4.4 million. Shares were last down 38 cents or 12.1 per cent at $2.76.

    Asian markets opened in the red but pared losses as US index futures improved. China's Shanghai Composite was lately down 0.1 per cent, Hong Kong's Hang Seng 0.3 percent and Japan's Nikkei 0.4 per cent. S&P 500 index futures were ahead 6.8 points or 0.2 per cent.

    Turning to commodity markets, Brent crude oil futures advanced 23 cents or 0.4 per cent this morning
    to $US60.26 a barrel.

    Gold futures drifted 80 cents or less than 0.1 per cent to $US1,514.90 an ounce.

    On currency markets, the dollar edged up almost a tenth of a cent to 67.8 US cents.

    Trading: spinning my wheels all morning. A lot of nearlies but no hits.

    Last edited by highlandlad: 21/08/19
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