News: Outlook: Earnings results set to flood onto ASX

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    The SPI is pointing to a positive start for the Australian share market ahead of a flood of corporate earnings results. While Wall Street remained closed for a public holiday yesterday European markets moved lower on Monday.  
     
    Amid company financial results traders can expect to hear from Fortescue Metals Group Limited (ASX:FMG), Macquarie Group Limited (ASX:MQG), Pacific Brands Limited (ASX:PBG), Coca-Cola Amatil Limited (ASX:CCL), SEEK Limited (ASX:SEK) and Dick Smith Holdings Limited (ASX:DSH). 
     
    Attention will also be on the Reserve Bank of Australia with the release of its monthly meeting minutes. 
     
    Global markets
     
    Wall Street stayed shut on Monday for the Presidents’ Day public holiday: On Friday the Dow Jones Industrial Average lifted 0.3 per cent to close at 18,019, the S&P 500 lifted 0.4 per cent to close at a record closing high of 2,097 and the Nasdaq lifted 0.8 per cent to close at 4,894.
     
    European markets started the week in the red: London's FTSE 100 lost 0.2 per cent, France's CAC 40 lost 0.2 per cent and Germany's DAX lost 0.4 per cent.
     
    Asian markets lifted into the new week: Japan’s Nikkei gained 0.5 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.2 per cent, and China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.6 per cent.
     
    The Australian share market shrugged off a soft start to the week and ended higher yesterday: The S&P/ASX 200 index lifted 11 points on Monday to close at 5,889. On the futures market the SPI is 11 points higher. 
     
    Currencies 
     
    The Australian dollar at 8:30am was buying $US0.7775, 50.62 Pence Sterling, 92.09 Yen and 68.52 Euro cents.
     
    Economic news due out today 
     
    Reserve Bank of Australia: February board meeting minutes
     
    Australian Bureau of Statistics: International merchandise imports for January
     
    ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ)-Roy Morgan: Weekly consumer confidence survey
     
    Reporting season latest results
     
    ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ) has lifted its cash profit 3 per cent to $1.79 billion in the first quarter of its 2015 financial year.The bank’s statutory net profit came in line with last year at $1.65 billion, customer deposits increased 9 per cent and net loans and advances rose 8 per cent. CEO Mike Smith says ANZ has started the year strongly but cautioned the current financial year is showing a slightly tougher, more volatile environment. The results come just one day after ANZ appointed Mark Whelan as CEO Australia to succeed Philip Chronican who is leaving to pursue a non-executive career. Shares in ANZ Banking Group firmed 0.36 per cent to close at a record high of $35.87 on Monday. 
     
    Asciano Limited (ASX:AIO) has flagged higher earnings over the year ahead and lifted its first half net profit 1.2 per cent to almost $190 million. Revenue dipped 3 per cent to almost $2 billion over the last six months of 2014 but the fully franked interim dividend has been boosted 43.5 per cent to 8.25 cents. The freight logistics company has also revealed its Chairman Malcolm Broomhead will step down at its annual general meeting later this year. Shares in Asciano firmed 0.16 per cent to close at $6.41 on Monday. 
     
    Ex-dividends
     
    Boral Limited (ASX:BLD) paying an 8.5 cent fully franked dividend
    Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) paying a dividend of $1.98 fully franked 
    Downer EDI Limited (ASX:DOW) paying a 12 cent fully franked dividend
     
    Commodities 
     
    Gold has gained $3.70 to $US1,231 an ounce for the April contract on Comex. 
    Silver has lifted $0.01 to $17.30 for March. 
    Copper is flat at $2.61 a pound. 
    Oil has slipped $0.12 to $US53.55 a barrel for March light crude in New York.
 
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