ASX flat, ACCC approves NAB Citi deal, EML soars 20%, Webjet's rating gets upgraded

Market Reports

by Melissa Darmawan

The Aussie sharemarket opened flat resembling similar moves in Europe and Wall St ahead of Thanksgiving holiday. After a sell-down this week in technology stocks, the sector has managed a comeback joining the ranks with materials leading the index. At midday, the XJO is hovering higher at 0.1 per cent or 5 points at 7,404. The SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 6 points.

Energy stocks have taken a breather after their two-day rally after the US and five other world players unveiled a coordinated effort to tap into their oil reserves on Tuesday. Weakness across the major banks continued while Macquarie (ASX:MQG) is on track to erase their gains from yesterday.

EML Payments (ASX:EML) received a rather energetic open with shares skyrocketing over 22 per cent at $3.37 after Ireland’s central bank gave the green light to allow EML’s Irish regulated subsidiary “to sign new customers and launch new programs whilst staying within the material growth restrictions”. Four months ago, the company flagged that they were concerned about the central bank’s limits to hinder their European operations.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will not block NAB’s (ASX:NAB) takeover bid of Citi’s consumer business locally. The deal will see NAB take on Citi's credit card, personal loans, and wealth management services. The ACCC said NAB would continue to face competition from a range of suppliers of credit cards. Shares in NAB (ASX:NAB) are trading flat at $24.43.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (ASX:FPH) is trading 3.7 per cent at $32.01 after posting first-half profits at $222 million as strong demand continued for respiratory machines for hospitals.

Across the mining giants, pure-play Fortescue (ASX:FMG) is rallying again, adding another 3.4 per cent while BHP (ASX:BHP), and Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) are trading higher in the order of 1.3 to 1.8 per cent, respectively.

Gold players are on the move after the price of precious metal gained with Northern Star (ASX:NST) and Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) trading up to 1.7 per cent.

Energy players as mentioned are in the red with marginal losses across the board with Woodside (ASX:WPL) shedding 0.4 per cent while Santos (ASX:STO) and Oil Search (ASX:OSH) are down about the 0.2 per cent mark.

Meanwhile, CSL (ASX:CSL) is down 0.6 per cent while Afterpay (ASX:APT) is trading 3.1 per cent higher.

Local economic news

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released business investment figures which showed that new capital expenditure fell by 2.2 per cent for the September quarter against a market expectation of a fall of 2.0 per cent.

Buildings and structures fell by 0.2 per cent, while equipment, plant and machinery fell by 4.1 per cent. Estimate 4 for 2021-22 is $138.6 billion, which is 8.7 per cent higher than estimate 3 for 2021-22.

Elsewhere payroll jobs are up 1.4 per cent in the fortnight up to 30 October as per the ABS.

Broker moves

Morgans upgrade Webjet’s (ASX:WEB) rating to an add from a hold with a boosted price target of $6.60. While Webjet continues to feel the impact from Covid-19, the travel booker does not expect a return to pre-covid booking levels until the second half of financial year 2023.

The broker did note that the company generated positive operating cashflow in the first half totalling $32.8 million and is forecasting six months of positive underlying earnings. Given cost out metrics, the broker expects the company to exceed 2019 underlying earnings in financial year 2024. The rating is upgraded and the target price increases to $6.60 from $6.20.

Shares in Webjet (ASX:WEB) are trading 1.5 per cent lower at $5.85. 

IPO

Radiopharm Theranostics (ASX:RAD). Their shares issued at $0.60, started trading at $0.47 and are currently at $0.44.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Information Technology, up 1.5 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Health Care, down 0.6 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is EML Payments (ASX:EML) trading 22.6 per cent higher at $3.37, followed by shares in Deterra (ASX:DRR), and Nickel Mines (ASX:NIC).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Redbubble (ASX:RBL) trading 3.4 per cent lower at $3.37, followed by shares in Collins Foods (ASX:CKF), and AMP (ASX:AMP).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1792.30 an ounce.
Iron ore is 4.0 per cent higher at US$103.45 a ton.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 4.41 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.09 US cents.

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