ASB Securities Morning Brief for Monday, 30 November 2015
Monday, 30 November 2015

New Zealand Headlines

New Zealand Market Report: New Zealand shares rose as a2 Milk, which had dipped from a record high this week, resumed its rally, and companies held for their relatively high yields, such as Tower and Genesis Energy, gained on speculation the Reserve Bank will cut interest rates next month. The S&P/NZX 50 index rose 13.11 points, or 0.2 percent, to 6101. Within the index, 25 stocks rose, 16 fell and 9 were unchanged. Turnover was $157 million... Read more

The New Zealand dollar was largely unchanged heading into the week's close as the Thanksgiving holiday in the US sapped trading activity and as investors gear up for a series of central bank meetings next month. The kiwi traded at 65.72 US cents at 5pm in Wellington from 65.63 cents on Friday in New York last week. It traded at 65.67 cents at 8am, down from 65.87 cents yesterday. The trade-weighted index was at 71.48 from 71.54 yesterday, and 71.57 at last week's New York close... Read more

Kiwibank economists see more strong growth in international visitors and most are likely to spend more here, bolstering a slowing general economy... Read more

Rental returns on residential investment properties have been steadily declining for more than 20 years, while capital returns have generally been much higher but also more erratic, according to research by Colliers International... Read more

Auckland's Grow North innovation ecosystem one step closer to reality. An action plan for Massey University's ambitious vision of creating an Auckland version of Silicon Valley will be unveiled on Monday. Over the past year Massey University has been leading the Grow North: Innovation District project set up to investigate how to develop an innovation district in Auckland North, and to produce a plan for its development... Read more

Horticulture New Zealand supports the 60 recommendations made in the report released today by the Land and Water Forum. But it does so with stern words of caution for the Government, that it cannot cherry-pick its way through the recommendations. “This is an all or nothing situation for horticulture,” Horticulture New Zealand natural resources and environment manager Chris Keenan says... Read more

Fonterra says farmer loan support package will cost $390 million... Read more

Beef, pig and deer farmers to face stream-fencing requirements... Read more

Last week the Financial Markets Authority published an extraordinary statistic. It was that out of every 1,000 KiwiSaver sales or transfers, only three were reportedly sold with personalised advice. When you recognise that KiwiSaver is New Zealand's premium retirement scheme with $30 billion invested, this seems to me a dangerously low figure... Read more

Numbers reveal the message in the margins. Why are investors attracted to companies that report losses year after year? Why do they buy into these loss-making companies, which include the NZX-listed Orion Health, Pushpay, Wynyard and Xero?... Read more

Health drink SOS Hydration seeks to raise $2.3m in crowdfunding campaign... Read more

ASX-listed Scentre Group has agreed to sell three Westfield shopping centres for $549 million in two deals, having put them up for sale earlier this year. Diversified NZ Property Fund, managed by NZX-listed Stride Property NZX: STR, will buy the Queensgate and Chartwell centres and is expected to close the deal in the first half of next year, while Ladstone Holdings has bought the Glenfield mall and is due to settle at the end of the month, Scentre said in a statement to the ASX. The sale of the three centres was at a yield of 8.2%.... Read more

F&P Healthcare boosts first-half profit 27%... Read more

GE becomes Latitude Financial Services after acquisition... Read more

Rocket Lab is on the verge of announcing a contract to launch satellites into space as it works on a new schedule for the test programme. "We're now fully booked for 2017-2018 and we're continuing to book more customers. "The growth has been very strong," said chief executive and founder Peter Beck.... Read more

Scott Technology shareholders overwhelmingly backed a deal handing control of the robotics manufacturer to Brazilian meat processor JBS.... Read more

Pulse Energy investors have been given mixed messages in a split recommendation on whether to accept a takeover bid for the electricity retailer, where three of the company's four independent directors won't take up the offer. Majority shareholder Buller Electricity, backed by Otago based lines company Pioneer Generation, has offered 11 cents per share, $1.10 for mandatory convertible notes, and 5 cents per option in the takeover, which closes on Dec. 16, and is conditional on reaching the 90 percent threshold needed to mop up the remaining stock. The shares last traded at 10.5 cents... Read more

In an effort to lower carbon emissions in New Zealand, Westpac has publicly revealed the amount of lending committed to fossil fuel and environmentally friendly companies. Timed for release with the United Nations Climate Change Conference being held in Paris, Westpac disclosed that over the past three years it made available $327 million in new lending to green businesses.... Read more

Auckland Council has agreed to pay $15 million towards the $60 million to $70 million cost of restoring the heritage St James Theatre in Queen St. At a meeting of the council's finance and performance committee, councillors Ross Clow and Cathy Casey moved for that sum to be contributed from the built heritage acquisition fund... Read more

Sir Michael Hill reflects on meditation, mistakes, and a meteoric mid-life rise video Jewellery boss Sir Michael Hill has stepped down from his chairman's role at the firm this month and reflects on his success to Richard Meadows.... Read more

Silver Fern Farms, New Zealand's largest meat processor, paid former chief executive Keith Cooper more than $1.8 million last financial year, reflecting his long service with the company... Read more

Pharmaceuticals distributor Ebos has won company of the year in the latest Deloitte Top 200 awards. Ebos had been up against other finalists Z Energy NZX: ZEL and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare NZX: FPH for the top award... Read more

A leading charities campaigner has cried foul over the taxpayer subsidising people's private decisions to tithe to their churches. Worshippers who donate to churches - including those tithing 10 per cent of their incomes - are among the biggest recipients of tax credits... Read more

Bath Street Capital, which has been building up its local trustee business, has filed a counter-claim in the High Court against Pyne Gould Corp, saying the protracted fight over what's owed in relation to Pyne Gould's sale of Perpetual Trust has slowed progress for Bath Street's stock exchange listing and generated substantial costs for the firm... Read more

Parent, wife of Pike River victims fail to win court review... Read more

A Canterbury businessman whose failed company ruined a man's barn home dream is a fraudster with a queue of angry creditors. Paul Encell has a lot of people on his back. The Canterbury businessman has been thrown out by his partner and his company, Encell Group Ltd, faces police scrutiny after it folded almost a month ago... Read more

Opinion - Siah Hwee Ang: Opening up a competitive Chinese market. The slowdown of the Chinese economy, mixed feelings among foreign companies operating in China, and the increasing number of multinationals exiting the country have led to further liberalisation of the Chinese market... Read more

Opinion - Geoff Simmons: Dairy industry must learn to share its toys or get put in the naughty corner... Read more

Opinion - Bernard Hickey: Build it and we will pay. Bernard Hickey argues Infratil and the Wellington Council should take the risk of investing NZ$300 mln to extend the Wellington Airport, not the region's ratepayers and the nation's taxpayers in general... Read more

Opinion - Rod Oram: Director dilemmas. Board composition is a contentious issue, writes Rod Oram. The biggest debate at Fonterra's AGM on Wednesday was on a shareholder resolution to reduce the co-op's board from 13 directors to nine.... Read more

Australian Headlines

Australian Market Report: Weaker commodities to dampen Australian stocks... Read more

The Australian dollar is relatively flat after getting little direction from US markets overnight and as traders hold their positions ahead of a busy data week. At 0630 AEDT on Friday, the local unit was trading at 72.30 US cents, down from 72.38 cents on Thursday.... Read more

The change of season usually brings a data deluge and this week's start of summer is no exception with an RBA meeting thrown in for good measure. RBA governor Glenn Stevens and his board already seem in holiday mode and in no mood to pull any monetary levers down... Read more

The Reserve Bank of Australia's last interest rate decision for the year and third-quarter national accounts head the list of market-moving events in what is shaping up as a busy first week of December. The chances of a third cash rate cut for the year at Tuesday's RBA board meeting are close to zero... Read more

The Turnbull government will have a tough time getting through parliament childcare reforms it says will leave the average family $30 a week better off. Education Minister Simon Birmingham says the package to be introduced during this week's final parliamentary sitting of the year is a generous one targeted at those who most need help to juggle work and family obligations... Read more

Budget faces $38bn blowout: Deloitte. The federal budget will be $38 billion worse off over the next four years, largely as a result of the slowdown in the Chinese economy. That's the view of respected economist Chris Richardson as Treasurer Scott Morrison puts together his mid-year budget review due in the middle of December... Read more

A growing number of cash-strapped mortgage customers are making minimum-only repayments on their loans raising concerns they are carrying too much debt. Despite the nation’s cash rate resting at a historical low of two per cent, multiple lenders have revealed they have seen an upwards trend in borrowers making the lowest repayments possible on their loans... Read more

Five things you need to know about your mortgage... Read more

A radical GST proposal from South Australia's Labor Premier to pay for health costs has sparked the interest of the Commonwealth and some of his state and territory colleagues. Jay Weatherill has called for the GST rate to increase to 15 per cent as part of a broader tax plan to be put to his state and federal counterparts formally in a fortnight at a Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting... Read more

The business career of Malcolm Turnbull will come under increasing scrutiny ahead of next year’s federal election, including his role in the 2001 collapse of insurer HIH, which triggered a royal commission... Read more

Nickel fell for the first time in four days after smelters in China vowed to curtail output from next month, underscoring scepticism among investors on whether cutbacks by the world's biggest producer are able to make a dent in the global glut... Read more

Pacific Niugini's managing director, Paul Cmrlec, has been quite active recently boosting his stake through on-market trades.... Read more

Sheffield Resources has announced a $7 million capital raising to conduct a bankable feasibility study for its Thunderbird mineral sands project east of Broome. The raising will take the form of a $5 million placement priced at 44 cents a share along with a $2 million share purchase plan... Read more

Sovereign Gold shares bounce as funding gets sorted... Read more

Brazil to sue BHP, Vale for $7b in damages for Samarco dam burst... Read more

Rio Tinto has approved its massive $US1.9 billion South of Embley bauxite project on Queensland's Cape York Peninsula. The mining giant has changed the name of the mine to the Aboriginal word Amrun, with the project involving construction of a bauxite mine as well as processing and port facilities... Read more

Shares in Empire Resources spiked 27.3% today with news the company had raised A$400,000 for development of its highly prospective Penny’s Find gold project in Western Australia. The stock was last trading at A$0.014, which represents a 367% pick-up since the midpoint of the calendar year... Read more

Mining workers fall from 'champagne lifestyle' to working poor as resources sector jobs wane... Read more

Leading flow battery company RedFlow is expecting to receive a tax refund of about A$1.8 million in either December 2015 or January 2016. This comes after the company completed and submitted its tax return for the period ending June 30, 2015... Read more

Cross-media ownership change delayed to 2016... Read more

Stream Group has been granted a trading halt by the ASX this morning, pending details of a capital raising... Read more

US airfares hit new lows for Aussies as competition sparks from Qantas-American Airlines partnership... Read more

It's so much more than a place to lay the dead to rest. The Southern Hemisphere’s largest cemetery is reinventing itself as cultural destination, with the woman who runs it on a mission to shake off its macabre image. Rookwood Cemetery in Sydney’s west is being billed as Australia’s most unlikely new tourist destination, with the state government keen to position it as our equivalent of Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris or Arlington National Cemetery near Washington DC... Read more

Micro-donations platform provider Activistic is set to accelerate plans for its Veterans Call (US) and Ralli (UK) products with A$3.9 million in funding. The company secured firm commitments for the capital raising in an oversubscribed placement at $0.11 per share... Read more

OncoSil Medical has received a boost to its cash balance after it received a refund from the Australian Taxation Office of $1,535,444. This follows the lodgement of the 2014/15 financial year tax return... Read more

Premier Investments, which owns retailer Just Group, says its successful Smiggle stores are set for aggressive expansion overseas. The chief executive of Premier's retail arm, Mark McInnes, says the colourful stationery chain Smiggle is at the beginning of an amazing journey... Read more

A goodly chunk of the future corporate profits from the NSW power sale are destined to wend their merry way to the Cayman Islands. This is probably why the winning bidder – a consortium of Victorian power group Spark, asset manager Hastings and three offshore funds – could afford to stump up the heroic $10.3 billion to trump the Transgrid tender; they ain't counting on paying much tax... Read more

Cricketing legend Shane Warne has launched a spirited defence of his personal charity following a Fairfax Media report that it had avoided public scrutiny by requesting its financial records be declared confidential by the national charity regulator. Warne threatened to launch legal action over the article during an interview before Channel Nine's coverage of the Adelaide test match on Sunday afternoon... Read more

Opinion - Anne Moore: Why big business needs the tax breaks, not start-ups.... Read more

Opinion - Michael Pascoe: When Lang Walker is selling property, the RBA should be worried. Lang Walker knows a bit about property development and investment – he's been doing it for the better part of 40 years and became a billionaire twice over in the process... Read more

Opinion - Jason Murphy: Are the four horsemen of the economic apocalypse here? I’m A positive person — I feel optimistic about the future of the Australian economy, normally. But there is one graph I saw a few days ago that makes me want to go down into a bunker with cans of baked beans and await the apocalypse. What would you do if you knew the end was nigh? You’d probably stop saving money and not worry about the impact of all that jogging on your knees. Maybe, actually, not even bother jogging... Read more

Opinion - James Kirby: Should Lucy Turnbull be running a stockmarket company?... Read more

International Headlines

U.S. Market Report: The Dow industrials has ended lower in an abbreviated, post-Thanksgiving session, as Disney and energy-company shares weighed on the index. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 14.9 points, or 0.1 per cent to 17,798.49. The S&P 500 added 1.24 points, less than 0.1 per cent, to 2,090.11, while the Nasdaq Composite rose 11.38 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 5127.52.... Read more

North/South Americas Market Report: North and South American markets finished mixed as of the most recent closing prices. The S&P 500 gained 0.06%, while the Bovespa led the IPC lower. They fell 2.70% and 0.29% respectively... Read more

European Market Report: European markets finished lower on Friday with shares in France leading the region. The CAC 40 is down 0.32% while London's FTSE 100 is off 0.28% and Germany's DAX is lower by 0.24%... Read more

Asian Market Report: Asian markets finished broadly lower on Friday with shares in China leading the region. The Shanghai Composite is down 5.48% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng is off 1.87% and Japan's Nikkei 225 is lower by 0.30%... Read more

Oil prices have slid on concerns about an global oversupply as traders look ahead to next week's OPEC meeting, sceptical the oil producers cartel will lower high output levels. US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery in January slid $US1.27 to $US41.71 a barrel on Friday, in a shortened post-Thanksgiving holiday trading session on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent North Sea crude for January, the international benchmark for oil, was down US58c at $US44.88 a barrel in late trade in London.... Read more

Iran seeks $30bn of new oil contracts... Read more

Iran is seeking $US25 billion ($A34.6bn) in investments from 50 deals involving international oil and gas companies, foreign executives have been told in Tehran as the government outlined new contractual terms... Read more

Gold price plummets to almost 6-year low. Here's what people aren't buying right now: Gold. The yellow metal traded as low as $1,051.60 an ounce on Friday, the cheapest price in nearly 6 years... Read more

The Federal Reserve appears hell bent on raising interest rates for the first time in a decade and only a lousy U.S. jobs report could put a freeze on its plans. Don’t bet on it, though. With job openings near a record peak and hiring at an 11-month high, employment gains i... Read more

Sales at U.S. brick-and-mortar stores on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday were down slightly from last year, but the performance was still seen as strong in a holiday shopping season where discounts spread well beyond the weekend and many shoppers moved to the web. Online sales were up by double digits, according to data released on Saturday.... Read more

Apple Watch gains holiday sales momentum... Read more

Shares of Walt Disney Co. were expected to come under pressure on Friday after the company revealed that it lost three million subscribers to its sports network ESPN within one year. The ESPN faithful are down to 92 million as of the fiscal year ended Oct. 3., Disney said in a regulatory filing dated Wednesday. That compares with 95 million for fiscal year 2014, and 99 million for 2013... Read more

KaloBios short sellers facing squeeze as CEO Shkreli says will no longer lend stock. The trader who appealed for help on GoFundMe after a short bet on KaloBios Pharmaceuticals Inc. left him with a $106,445.56 loss may soon have company.... Read more

German airline Lufthansa has agreed a pay deal with 30,000 ground staff as it looks to avoid further strikes. The agreement, struck with services sector union Verdi on Saturday, gives a one-off payment of €2,250 (£1,580) and a 2.2% pay rise. The deal covers Lufthansa airport staff as well as catering, IT, freight and maintenance workers... Read more

Volkswagen's top executives knew a year ago that some of the company's cars were markedly less fuel efficient than had been officially stated, Sunday paper Bild am Sonntag reported, without specifying its sources. Read more at Reuters Read more

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree imposing economic sanctions against Turkey, four days after Turkey shot down a Russian warplane near the Syrian-Turkish border... Read more

China's main share index closed down by more than 5% after several major brokerage firms announced they were under investigation. The Shanghai Composite index ended the day 5.5% lower at 3,436.3 points - marking its biggest drop since August.... Read more

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is expected to approve inclusion of China's yuan in its basket of elite currencies on Monday, rewarding Beijing's strong pursuit of the global status... Read more

Five China Bond Deadlines to Watch... Read more

The Two-Month Blockade of Nepal Explained... Read more

AirAsia shares slide on poor earnings results... Read more

How India Fares in Company Corruption. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi often talks about tamping down on corruption in India, but a recent report shows that it remains pervasive.... Read more

Indian Business Sentiment Suffers Even During Diwali... Read more

Opinion - Masahiko Takeda: Is RMB in the SDR a blessing for China?... Read more

Latest reports

Latest reports