Fewer Australian businesses report falling revenue: ASX tracking 0.7% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market fell at the open and is now tracking 0.7 per cent lower at noon. Shares in Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) are down almost 8 per cent after they reported their September quarter gold production fell 19 per cent. Healius (ASX:HLS) shares are up after a strong first quarter update.

The S&P/ASX 200 index 

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 46 points down at 6,146.. On the futures market the SPI is suggesting a fall of 47 points.

Economic news

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released the results of the Covid-10 impact on Australian businesses, reporting fewer businesses reported a revenue decrease in October (31 per cent) compared to July (47 per cent). Almost three quarters (73 per cent) of businesses had not sought additional funds over the last 6 months. Almost one third (29 per cent) reported that cash on hand could sustain operations for less than three months.

Broker moves

Macquarie rates Coles (ASX:COL) as Downgrade to a Neutral from an Outperform. The broker reports volumes have been maintained but internet sales and the shopping local theme both favour Woolworths (ASX:WOW) and Metcash (ASX:MTS) over Coles. The broker notes the Coles Little Treehouse Books campaign has not resonated strongly with customers compared with the more successful Ooshies campaign at Woolworths. Target price is $18.70. Shares in Coles (ASX:COL) are currently tracking 1.1 per cent lower at $17.31.

Company news

OZ Minerals (ASX:OZL) lifted its gold production guidance from its Prominent Hill operation and lowered its cost guidance for 2020. Prominent Hill achieved record underground ore movement with 1Mt for the quarter. Total gold production guidance has been increased to between 242,000 ounces to 259,000 ounces for 2020. The acquisition of Cassini Resources is now completed giving OZ Minerals 100% ownership of the West Musgrave project. Shares in OZ Minerals (ASX:OZL) are currently 4.2 per cent higher at $15.80.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Materials with the fewest losses, losing 0.3 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Energy shedding 2.1 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Healius (ASX:HLS) rising 5.7 cent to $3.64, followed by shares in Oz Minerals (ASX:OZL) and Auckland International Airport (ASX:AIA).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) dropping 7.8 per cent to $0.86, followed by shares in Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (ASX:NCM) and IPH (ASX:IPH).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,922 an ounce.
Iron ore has gained 0.7 per cent to $120.49.
Iron ore futures are suggesting a rise of 1.1 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 71.04US cents.