Investors win from BHP, Rio cash surge

Original article by James Thomson
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 40 : 18-Feb-19

BHP returned $US10.5bn to investors in 2018, while Rio Tinto returned some $US12.5bn. Both resources groups are expected to have large cash balances when their latest financial results are released in the next week or so, and the recent rally in the iron ore price will further boost their cash holdings during 2019. James Eginton of the Tribeca Natural Resource Fund says BHP and Rio Tinto should consider using some of their franking credits via special dividends in the next six months, in preparation for a possible change of federal government.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, TRIBECA NATURAL RESOURCES FUND, FORTESCUE METALS GROUP LIMITED – ASX FMG, CITIGROUP PTY LTD, UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD, VALE SA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

Beach lifts profit guidance as more growth tipped

Original article by Angela Macdonald-Smith
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 18 : 14-Feb-19

Beach Energy has posted a 2081-19 interim net profit of $282.9m and underlying earnings of $278.8m. Sales rose by 169 per cent to $1.057bn, and Beach has upgraded its full-year EBITDA forecast in response to its strong performance in the first half. CEO Matt Kay says the oil and gas group will consider acquisitions, but he stresses that any deals would need to add value for shareholders. Shares in Beach closed 5.3 per cent higher at $1.78 on 13 February.

CORPORATES
BEACH ENERGY LIMITED – ASX BPT, LATTICE ENERGY LIMITED, SEVEN GROUP HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX SVW, BP PLC, CUE ENERGY RESOURCES NL – ASX CUE, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED, CITIGROUP PTY LTD

Macquarie chief backs loan brokers

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 19 & 23 : 13-Feb-19

Macquarie Group has affirmed that it expects profit growth of around 15 per cent for fiscal 2019, which suggests a full-year profit of at least $3bn. Meanwhile, Macquarie has more than $24bn worth of capital reserves at present, but CEO Shemara Wikramanayake has stressed the need for discipline with regard to risk management in the current environment. She has also expressed support for the mortgage broking industry in the wake of the financial services royal commission.

CORPORATES
MACQUARIE GROUP LIMITED – ASX MQG, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, CADENCE CAPITAL LIMITED – ASX CDT, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED, QUADRANT ENERGY PTY LTD, PROPERTY EXCHANGE AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

JB Hi-Fi surges as tech reigns

Original article by Eli Greenblat
The Australian – Page: 19 : 12-Feb-19

Consumer electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi has posted a 2018-19 interim net profit of $160.1m, which is 5.5 per cent higher than previously. JB Hi-Fi has forecast that its full-year net profit will be within the range of $237m to $245m; full-year sales are expected to be $7.1bn, after sales totalled $3.843bn in the first half. CEO Richard Murray says consumers still seem to be buying gadgets such as smartphones and internet-connected fridges, at a time when many discretionary retailers are struggling.

CORPORATES
JB HI-FI LIMITED – ASX JBH, THE GOOD GUYS, OPHIR ASSET MANAGEMENT PTY LTD

Comyn confident about house prices

Original article by Joyce Moullakis, Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 21 : 7-Feb-19

The Commonwealth Bank has posted a 2018-19 interim cash profit of $4.77bn, which is 2.1 per cent lower than previously. Mortgage and business lending rose by four per cent and five per cent respectively during the half-year, while lending margins were affected by factors such as increased competition and rising funding costs. Meanwhile, CEO Matt Comyn forecasts that growth in housing credit will slow in 2019, although he does not anticipate a sharp decline in house prices.

CORPORATES
COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, CORELOGIC AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD

Stockland, Mirvac and Lendlease face settlement risk

Original article by Ben Wilmot, Samantha Bailey
The Australian – Page: 17 & 23 : 31-Jan-19

UBS says settlement risk could be a problem for Mirvac, Lendlease and Stockland in coming years as a result of the downturn in Australia’s apartment market. US believes that Mirvac is most vulnerable to settlement risk; however, such concerns have been downplayed by the head of Mirvac’s residential division, Stuart Penklis. Meanwhile, Dominic Lambrinos of Chifley Securities says some developers could be forced to sell development sites at a discount.

CORPORATES
UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD, MIRVAC GROUP – ASX MGR, LEND LEASE GROUP LIMITED – ASX LLC, STOCKLAND – ASX SGP, CHIFLEY SECURITIES, CORELOGIC AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, AMP LIMITED – ASX AMP, CREDIT SUISSE (AUSTRALIA) LIMITED

Queue for new share listings shrinks after 18pc loss last year

Original article by Michael Bailey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 : 31-Jan-19

HLB Mann Judd expects Australia’s IPO market to remain subdued in 2019, after a poor performance in 2018. Companies that listed in 2018 had shed an average of 18 per cent of their value by the end of the year. IPO activity was also lower, with the number of floats falling from 110 in 2017 to just 93. Marcus Ohm of HLB Mann Judd notes that the 17 companies that have applied to list on the sharemarket so far in 2019 are seeking to raise just $179m in total.

CORPORATES
HLB MANN JUDD, IFLIX LIMITED, NETFLIX INCORPORATED, VIVA ENERGY GROUP LIMITED – ASX VEA, CORONADO GLOBAL RESOURCES INCORPORATED – ASX CRN, L1 LONG SHORT FUND LIMITED – ASX LSF, ADRIATIC METALS PLC – ASX ADT, EXOPHARM LIMITED – ASX EX1, ELIXINOL GLOBAL LIMITE – ASX EXL

Tough earnings season ahead as pressure builds

Original article by David Rogers
The Australian – Page: 27 : 31-Jan-19

Tony Brennan of Citigroup says earnings guidance in the February 2019 reporting season is likely to be influenced by factors such as the slowdown in Australia’s housing market and falling business sentiment. Brennan says companies in a range of sectors have downgraded their earnings forecasts in recent months, and this may be reflected in the upcoming profit reporting season. The S&P/ASX 200 has gained 4.3 per cent so far in 2019, and Citigroup still expects it to test the 6,300-point level by the end of the year.

CORPORATES
CITIGROUP PTY LTD, STANDARD AND POOR’S ASX 200 INDEX, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, CORELOGIC AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

OZ says copper won’t be hit by slowdown

Original article by Simon Evans
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 19 : 25-Jan-19

OZ Minerals CEO Andrew Cole is confident that strong demand for copper and the lack of major new discoveries means the copper price will ride out any downturn in the global economy. Meanwhile, production at OZ Minerals’ Carrapateena mine in South Australia is scheduled to begin in the final quarter of 2019, and Cole says it should reach full production within 18 months. He is also optimistic that the Prominent Hill mine’s will remain in production beyond 2030, when it is currently slated to close.

CORPORATES
OZ MINERALS LIMITED – ASX OZL, ANGLO AMERICAN PLC, VALE SA, MMX MINERACAO E METALICOS SA

Housing faces year of downturn

Original article by Turi Condon
The Australian – Page: 17 : 25-Jan-19

National Australia Bank now expects dwelling prices in Sydney and Melbourne to fall by 15 per cent from peak to trough. NAB’s latest survey of property industry professionals shows that respondents generally expect New South Wales and Victoria to incur the biggest fall in housing prices over the next several years, although prices are also tipped to fall or remain flat outside of the two largest capitals. NAB’s separate survey of consumers shows that they are more upbeat about the outlook for the housing market than property professionals.

CORPORATES
NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, CREDIT SUISSE (AUSTRALIA) LIMITED, CORELOGIC AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, AMP CAPITAL INVESTORS LIMITED