The ASX 200 is up 33 points in mid-morning trade. Materials rock, Energy powering and banks and Industrials drag. NCP Q, GUD result, AIZ downdate, CPI today. #ausbiz
- Domestic data – Inflation Rate, Expectations are for a 1.7% annual rate (down from 1.9%), and 1.8% for the RBA’s preferred measure.
- Ex-dividend – Gryphon Capital Income Trust (GCI) 0.9c
- Japanese data – Retail Sales, Consumer Confidence
- UK – BoE Consumer Credit
- European data – Business Confidence, Services Sentiment, Consumer Confidence Final, Consumer Inflation Expectations, Economic Sentiment, Industrial Sentiment
- US data – ADP Employment Change, Pending Home Sales
- FOMC Rate Decision
- Mayne Pharma (MYX) – Has launched TOLSURA™ (SUBA®-itraconazole) 65mg capsule in the US. TOLSURA is a new formulation of itraconazole indicated for the treatment of systemic fungal infections including blastomycosis (pulmonary and extrapulmonary), histoplasmosis (including chronic cavitary pulmonary disease and disseminated, non-meningeal histoplasmosis) and aspergillosis (pulmonary and extrapulmonary, in patients who are intolerant of or who are refractory to amphotericin B therapy).
- Newcrest Mining (NCM) – Q Report. Gold production of 655koz, up 19% on the SepQ; Copper production of 27kt, up 8% on SepQ; Group AISC of $720/oz, lower by $58/oz compared to SepQ, Group AISC margin of $515/oz, higher by $74/oz compared to SepQ; Record quarterly and half year gold production of 239koz and 453koz respectively at Cadia; Record low quarterly AISC of $121/oz achieved at Cadia; All sites increased gold production and reduced AISC per ounce compared to SepQ; Early works on next block cave at Cadia (PC2-3) commenced.
- GUD Holdings (GUD) – Underlying profit up 10% to $43.9m or up 14% on a continuing operations basis. on revenue up 13% to $219.785m. Interim dividend 25c up 4%.
- Oz Mineral (OZL) – New greenfields discovery alliance agreement with Red Metal. $8M minimum spend over two years across six projects; $1.8M in front end cash payments to Red Metal.
- Atlas Arteria (ALX) – Toll revenue and traffic statistics, Weighted average toll revenue for the DecQ rose 1.5% on pcp and weighted average traffic decreased by 1.6% compared to pcp. The result reflects lower traffic levels at APRR and the Dulles Greenway during the quarter.
- Transurban (TCL) – Reached agreement with the Virginia Department of Transportation on a development framework to progress the 495 Northern Extension Project. The project involves an extension of the 495 Express Lanes for 3.2 kilometres toward the Maryland border. Construction is expected to commence post financial close in FY21.
- Air New Zealand – Revised guidance for EBIT for FY19 $340-$400m (previously $425-$525m which excluded $30-40m impact of schedule changes prompted by the Rolls-Royce engine issues). This includes the impact of the global Rolls-Royce engine issues. Also adjustments to its schedule which will reduce the rate of capacity growth to approximately 4% for the full year, at the low end of its original capacity guidance of 4% to 6%.
- Speedcast (SDA) – Awarded a new multi-year, fully-managed communications contract with Fred. Olsen Windcarrier, an entity of Bonheur ASA providing jack-up vessels used for offshore wind farm construction.
SPI FUTURES +23
US EQUITIES – S&P 500 -4 (-0.15%), Dow +52 (+0.21%), NASDAQ -57 (-0.81%)
- Underwhelming guidance from Pfizer (PFE +3.14%) (although it beat estimates), Verizon (VZ -3.25%), and 3M (MMM +1.94%) (although it lowered guidance). PulteGroup (PHM +0.81%) on biggest decline in orders since 2013, and Harley Davidson (HOG –5.05%) also in focus
- Disappointing consumer confidence data
- Huawei developments unsettling markets ahead of trade talks
- Fed meeting commenced
- Caution ahead of Apple (+4.32% in after-hours trade) report after market close
EUROPEAN MARKETS – Bounces. STOXX500 +0.80%, UK FTSE +1.29%, German DAX +0.08%, French CAC +0.81%.
- The USD is little changed at 95.78.
- The Aussie dollar is a touch lower at US71.53c.
BONDS – 2-yr: UNCH at 2.58%, 3-yr: -1 bp to 2.56%, 5-yr: -2 bps to 2.56%, 10-yr: -2 bps to 2.73%, 30-yr: UNCH at 3.06%
- WTI crude futures were up US$1.32 or 2.50% to $53.31, rebounding from weakness on Monday, after the US imposed sanctions on Venezuelan state-owned firm PDVSA. Libya’s biggest oilfield, El Sharara, is also shut while an armed group occupies the site.
- Gold is up US$7.40 or 0.57% to US$1310.50.
- Iron Ore – IRESS reports iron ore was up US$3.00 US$78.30 a tonne. CommSec reports iron ore was up US$1.25 or 1.6% at US$79.95.
- LME metals – Mixed. Copper +0.80%, nickel +2.49%, aluminium +1.34%
ECONOMIC DATA, NEWS & POLITICS
- FOMC starts its two-day policy meeting – decision tomorrow (no rate hike expected_
- US economic data – S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index 4.7% (consensus 4.9%; prior 5.0%); Consumer Confidence 120.2 (consensus 126.1; prior 126.6). This was the lowest reading since July 2017. The reports showed the outlook among consumers was dampened by financial market volatility and the government shutdown, which could have an impact on consumer spending data and drag on first quarter GDP.
- Huawei – The US Department of Justice filed criminal charges Monday against Meng Wanzhou, the CFO of Huawei and daughter of its founder and president Ren Zhengfei. It’s just ahead of meetings today and tomorrow between Chinese Vice Premier Liu and US officials.
- Trade update – White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow said President Donald Trump is “moderately optimistic” about China and the US striking a deal before a March 1 deadline
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much it is whether we provide enough for those who have little.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt, American President born this day in 1882. Died 12 April 1945.