S&P/ASX 200 closes fractionally higher led by the resources sector, especially gold stocks. Perseus Mining (PRU) +6.0%, Resolute Mining (RSG) +4.7%, OceanaGold Corporation (OGC) +3.4% and Northern Star Resources (NST) +2.8%.
Political focus is on leadership tensions in the the Federal Government. Latest polls show Labor leading the Coalition 55-45 on a two-party preferred basis. Australian Financial Review
S&P/ASX 200 Intraday
Nanosonics (NAN) slips 1.4% after reporting a 78.0% drop in full-year net profit. Revenue was down 10.1%. However the company says it is expecting continued growth in FY19 and beyond.
Woolworths (WOW) closes 0.6% lower after posting a 12.4% rise in full-year net profit. Sales were up 3.4%. The result was slightly below expectations and the stock was downgraded by brokers Deutsche Bank and UBS. The retailer says it expects to see reduced losses at its Big W division in FY19 but confirms that food sales have slowed so far this year due to heightened competition and the move to phase out single-use plastic bags.
Health insurer NIB Holdings (NHF) climbs 0.5% on news of a 10.7% rise in full-year earnings. Total income was up 11.1%.
S&P/ASX Sector Indices (% change)
Rent.com.au (RNT) sheds 1.4% after reporting a net loss of $2.8 million. Revenue was up 40.6%.
Pet care and veterinary group Greencross (GXL) sinks 2.1% after revealing a 43% drop in full-year net profit. Revenue was up 7.5%. Impairments, inventory write-downs and restructuring costs reduced second-half earnings by $15.3 million.
Ansell (ANN) dives 7.2% despite news of a 16.2% rise in full-year net profit. Sales were up 8.4%. The company says it is targeting annual EPS growth of 5-10% in FY19 and hopes to announce further acquisitions in the 'near future.' While market conditions remain 'generally supportive' in FY19, the group expresses concerns about rising raw material costs. It says that if input costs continue to increase, and further tariffs are imposed on US imports, earnings per share could be reduced by US5-6 cents per share.
Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) gains 1.2% despite announcing a 58.1% slide in full-year net profit. Revenue was down 18.5%. The company slashes its final dividend to US$0.12 per share from from US$0.25 in FY17. Several brokers cut their share price targets by between 2% and 4%.
oOh!media (OML) finishes 0.6% lower after reporting a modest 3.4% rise in half-yearly net profit. Revenue was up 11.0%.
Beach Energy (BPT) sheds 4.6% after it posts a 48.7% drop in full-year net profit. Revenue was up 91.7%, largely due to its Lattice Energy acquisition, and underlying earnings rose by 86.4%. The group flags a further strong increase in capital expenditure in FY19 with total spending forecast to be $460-$540 million. This is up from $288.5 million in FY17 and $156.1 in FY16.
Portfolio administrator Hub24 (HUB) surges 9.0% after reporting a 36.4% rise in full-year revenue and a 129% increase in underlying net profit.
ASX Market Moving Stocks
Primary Healthcare (PRY) returns to profitability with full-year net earnings of $8.9 million, up from a loss of $517 million in previous year. Revenue was up 4.9%.
Telecommunications group Superloop (SLC) rallies 6.1% after it posts a full-year net profit of $7.1 million, up from a loss of $1.2 million in FY17. Revenue more than doubled to $125.2 million.
Engineering services business Cardno (CDD) plunges 13.3% after reporting a full-year net loss of $14.0 million. Revenue was down 5.5%.
US shares end mostly higher with airline and retailing stocks doing well. Macy's Inc (M) +6.1%, Kohl's Corporation (KSS) +3.2% and Nordstrom Inc (JWM) +4.0%. Energy shares also gain ground as the oil price edges back towards US$67 per barrel.