Australian Stock Market Report - Midday 11/03/2011



Local stocks are coming under selling pressure in early trade, despite optimism returning on Wall Street and in Europe. The All Ordinaries Index (XAO) is down 20.4pts or 0.5pct to 4230.9 at lunchtime in the East.

Investors are selling out the the ANZ (ANZ) despite the lender reporting a record FY profit. Net profit was up 19pct to $5.36 billion, while the more closely watched cash profit increased by 12pct to $5.65 billion. Shares in the ANZ are down 1.1pct to $20.68 in early trade.

NewsCorp ( NWS ) shares however are rallying, firmer by 2.2pct in early trade to $16.87 as the media conglomerate's 1Q earnings impressed the market. NWS saw total revenue rise 7pct to $7.906 billion for the quarter.

The Australian Industry Group/Commonwealth Bank Australian Performance of Services Index ( PSI ) dropped back into negative territory in October, falling 1.5 points to 48.8 (readings below 50 indicate a contraction in activity). Activity expanded in four of the nine services sub sectors in October - down from five in September. Activity in the professional business service sub sectors was strong in October with the finance & insurance sub sector (61.0) and the property & business services (52.0) sub sector among those that expanded in October. Sub sectors linked to household spending including accommodation, cafés & restaurants (35.4) and retail trade (35.5) were weaker. Despite the weaker October result, the Australian PSI has, in three month moving average terms, been hovering around the 50 point level suggesting the sector has been stabilising in recent months after a long period of decline. 

The Australian dollar is worth US102.34c, £0.6432 and €74.74c.


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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: NWS , PSI

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