ASB Securities Morning Brief for Saturday, 03 October 2015
Saturday, 03 October 2015

New Zealand Headlines

New Zealand Market Report: New Zealand shares rose, lifting the NZX 50 Index from the lowest level in almost a month, on perceptions the market has become less over-valued after two quarters of decline. Z Energy rose, having slumped yesterday as 30 percent of the company changed hands. Infratil fell to its lowest in more than eight months. The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 8.07 points, or 0.1 percent, to 5593.50. Within the benchmark index, 24 stocks rose, 15 fell and 11 were unchanged. Turnover was $151 million... Read more

The New Zealand dollar is largely unchanged against the greenback this week as improving local outlook eases fears of slowing growth, and as traders wait for US employment data, which will help them weigh up the timing and pace of looming Federal Reserve interest rate hikes. The kiwi traded at 63.90 US cents at 5pm in Wellington from 63.84 cents on Friday in New York last week. It was little changed from 63.97 cents at 8am, and 64.08 cents yesterday. The trade-weighted index traded at 69.73 from 69.82 yesterday, and is heading for a 0.9 percent weekly gain... Read more

NZ commodity prices rise in September, snapping five-month decline... Read more

TPP on verge of breakthrough? Talks by trade ministers involved in the Trans Pacific Partnership have been pushed out by a further day - a sign the agreement is on the verge of a breakthrough. Prime Minister John Key leaves New York today while Trade Minister Tim Groser remains in Atlanta at the trade talks. Mr Key said those were due to end early this morning but had been pushed out to Saturday (Sunday NZT)... Read more

Big influx of cruise ships to boost New Zealand economy. New Zealand's biggest-ever cruise season is under way, bringing a third more passengers than last year.... Read more

Landcorp Farming says it is disappointed that Fonterra Cooperative Group is to stop offering a guaranteed milk price (GMP), which has helped New Zealand's largest corporate farmer manage price fluctuations and prevented an even bigger slump in 2015 earnings... Read more

The organisation that represents the country’s inshore fishers – Fisheries Inshore New Zealand – wants to work with the Government to develop mutually supportive utilisation and conservation outcomes in fisheries management and measures to protect the wider marine environment. It considers that achieving these needs to have processes that ensure that people whose livelihoods are fundamentally affected through political decisions, such as the creation of the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary, are fully consulted before those decisions are made... Read more

Marlborough winegrowers are preparing for the strongest El Nino summer since the extreme 1997/98 event, which cost New Zealand hundreds of millions of dollars in drought-destroyed crops. In New Zealand, the ocean-driven system typically brings colder, wetter conditions and prevailing westerly winds... Read more

Banking syndicate deadline gives Silver Fern too little time to mull alternatives, Grant Samuel says... Read more

Westpac NZ borrows €500m in QE distorted covered bond market. Westpac NZ fills its funding tin with covered bond issue against backdrop of ECB's quantitative easing programme... Read more

TruScreen, the NZAX-listed cervical cancer test developer, says annual sales won't be as big as previously forecast due to a delay in the commercial launch of an upgraded screening device. The shares last traded at 26.5 cents, and have climbed 79 percent this year.... Read more

On the block F&P Finance issues prospectus seeking up to $300 million... Read more

AFT Pharmaceuticals says decision imminent on dual listing in NZ, Australia... Read more

Rocket Lab to target moon in new contract... Read more

Crowdfunding can get complicated for entrepreneurs wanting cash and control. If you crave simplicity, cash and total control then equity crowdfunding may not be your best option, a software summit has heard. Lane Neave partner Claire Evans said some of her clients had been surprised at how much work they had to do after raising funds from the public... Read more

AIA makes major play in health insurance market... Read more

AML due diligence puts clients off. Requirements imposed by the Anti-Money Laundering Act are serving as a disincentive to clients thinking about putting their money with financial advisers, it has been claimed... Read more

MTA welcomes consultation on 2016/17 ACC vehicle levies. The ACC Minister Nikki Kaye today announced the start of ACC’s public levy consultation process. The ACC Board is proposing levy reductions worth $450 million in 2016/17, spread across work, earners’ and motor vehicle levies. For the latter category, a reduction of $218 million is proposed for motor vehicle levies... Read more

The government is contemplating major changes in how the telecommunication and broadcasting sectors are regulated from 2020 onwards. A discussion paper released in late August as part of the review of the Telecommunications Act considers significant changes that could be made to the regulatory framework... Read more

AML/CFT Act regulators advised to work together to close gap in law... Read more

The Commission has given clearance to FedEx to acquire all the shares in TNT. Both FedEx and TNT are global companies active in the provision of logistics, freight and small package delivery services... Read more

Touchtech winner of Fastest Growing Exporter award... Read more

Hutt Valley Chamber of Commerce & Industry - Wellington Region Business Excellence Awards Finalists Named... Read more

US music library Labrador drawn into NZ lawsuit between National Party, Eminem... Read more

Watchdog tracks big jump in complaints about telcos and ISPs. An independent consumer watchdog says more people are complaining about their phone company or ISP. David Russell, Chair of the Telecommunications Dispute Resolution (TDR) Council says in the year to June 30, 2015, complaints were up by 292 (18%) over the prior year.... Read more

Disputes Tribunal finds Spark 'arguably' doubling up on fees. Spark has no plans to change its cancellation policies despite a Disputes Tribunal finding it was arguably duplicating its fees. Christchurch man Daniel van Kessel signed a contract with the telco, which was advertising "unrestricted broadband ... as fast as you can get it". But after experiencing speeds he claimed were as slow as dial-up, he soon disconnected... Read more

Financial Markets Authority chief executive Rob Everett says he’s confident a review of the market watchdog’s recruitment policies mean there is "close to zero" risk of repeating the Benjamin Kiro hiring debacle. In an embarrassing revelation last month, one of the FMA’s analysts was charged with forging his academic record and running a Ponzi style scam. Kiro, who worked at the FMA from September last year until January, is accused of stealing $210,000... Read more

Financial Markets Authority recovers $51m for investors, insists it isn't court-shy. New Zealand's financial markets regulator recovered more than $51 million in compensation for burned investors over the past year. The FMA's annual report suggested investor confidence in New Zealand financial markets, as measured by surveys, had increased from 61 per cent in the 2013-14 year to 65 per cent.... Read more

Harvey Norman offers voucher and apology over sale and email bungle... Read more

Analysis - Keith Woodford: Keith Woodford delves into and behind the official Fonterra disclosures for the 2014-15 year and finds some unsettling developments... Read more

Police are continuing to seek an alleged fraudster accused of taking $230,000 from a range of Wellington businesses during a six month crime spree. Wellington Police have accused Christian Smith – who also went by aliases Christopher Stanley Sanford and Christopher Raymond Mish-Wills– of being the culprit... Read more

Analysis - Pathfinder Asset Management: More Heat than Light: Discussions about currency hedging. There are several discussion topics that are absolutely guaranteed to generate a lot of comment on websites like Good Returns. Performance fees, Active/passive management and currency hedging. Pathfinder director Paul Brownsley presents his view on currency hedging... Read more

Opinion - Hamish Rutherford: Fonterra's CEO pay freeze is nothing to crow about... Read more

Opinion - David Hargreaves: Will they douse the houses? Indigestion is likely to be the order of the day in Government and Reserve Bank circles in the face of further strong house market figures... Read more

Opinion - Fran O'Sullivan: Equality sets top table of Silver Fern Farm's joint venture... Read more

Australian Headlines

Australian Market Report: The Australian sharemarket has ended a sharply volatile week of trade with a 1 per cent fall, heading back towards the key 5000-point level as uncertainty about the US Federal Reserve’s imminent rate hike continued to plague investors. At the 4.15pm (AEST) official market close, the S&P/ASX200 index dipped 60.1 points, or 1.18 per cent, to 5052, while the broader All Ordinaries index fell 54.9 points, or 1.07 per cent, to 5089.2.... Read more

The Australian dollar is lower as weak US manufacturing data and caution about upcoming US jobs figures weigh on the currency. At 7am (AEST), the local unit was trading at US70.30c, down from US70.64c on Thursday.... Read more

Online shopping loses its mojo with lower Aussie dollar... Read more

Retail spending has bounced from the small fall suffered in July and economists expect the tills to keep ringing in the months ahead. Retail trade rose 0.4 per cent in August to $24.4 billion, after spending dropped 0.1 per cent in July, the first monthly fall in just over a year... Read more

The Reserve Bank is tipped to leave the cash rate unchanged on Tuesday, and most economists are predicting there will be no more rate cuts for the foreseeable future... Read more

China may own as much as 20 per cent of all Australian Government debt according to big Canadian investment bank RBC. Collating numbers released in the IMF's quarterly update on foreign exchange reserves, RBC's Sydney-based fixed income strategist Michael Turner said it appeared China held around $130 billion of the $730 billion Australian Government and quasi-government bonds in the market... Read more

Housing sector growth looks set to continue after a rebound in new home sales in August. Housing Industry Association data shows new home sales rose 2.3 per cent in August, after a decline of 0.4 per cent in July... Read more

Economists poor at picking turning points... Read more

The State Government pulled dividends worth almost $165 million out the Pilbara Ports Authority last financial year amid a tumbling iron ore price and widespread industry criticism of charges levied at WA’s biggest iron ore export terminal... Read more

Nickel industry braces for job cuts... Read more

Peninsula Energy has completed the 40 for 1 share consolidation of its listed ordinary shares on the Australian Securities Exchange ahead of a listing on the NYSE MKT later this year. On 24th September, shareholders approved the consolidation during the extraordinary general meeting. The company now has 173,422,794 ordinary shares. Last trade was $1.01.... Read more

Shares in Otto Energy were higher after the company said it had received $US21.3 million from BHP Billiton as part of a farm-down of its interest in an exploration project off the coast of the Philippines... Read more

New Talisman Gold directors acquire shortfall shares... Read more

WA's Talga Resources hopes to capitalise on graphene boom for batteries... Read more

An energy venture controlled by Hong Kong commodity trader Noble Group and US private-equity firm EIG Global Energy Partners has bid for assets being auctioned by energy company Santos, said people familiar with the matter... Read more

Trading in Glencore shares was volatile Friday as investors continued to weigh efforts by management to restore confidence in the Swiss commodity firm's finances amid weak commodity prices. Shares opened slightly higher and firmed in afternoon trading to finish 4.4 per cent higher.... Read more

Glencore backs WA nickel mine... Read more

The global panic that hit Glencore. From London to New York to Perth and to Hong Kong, the frantic question kept coming: could this be another Lehman?... Read more

An Australian company behind a gold mine in Thailand has denied reports it is at the centre of alleged corruption. Thailand's National Anti-Corruption Commission has told Thai media that it is investigating an allegation that Kingsgate Consolidated engaged in corrupt conduct to obtain a gold mining concession... Read more

Shell's global chief executive says an effective carbon price is needed to tackle climate change, whether through a trading or tax system. Speaking exclusively to ABC TV's The Business, Ben van Beurden said a price on carbon was necessary to discourage pollution... Read more

Pacifico Minerals has been granted an ASX trading halt regarding a capital raising... Read more

Mayor upset by bank demands for big mortgage deposits in mining downturn region. Mining communities on Tasmania's west coast are disappointed they will be subject to tighter home lending requirements by a major bank. The NAB is demanding a 30 per cent deposit for residents in towns including Queenstown, Rosebery and Strahan... Read more

Vitamin king Marcus Blackmore rides a $2.5 billion rocket... Read more

First Growth Funds has been granted an ASX trading halt in relation to a potential acquisition. First Growth Funds has been granted an ASX trading halt in relation to a potential acquisition. The halt will last until the earlier of the announcement being made or the start of trade on Tuesday, 6th October 2015... Read more

ANZ chairman David Gonski and new chief executive Shayne Elliott have launched a robust defence of the bank’s push into Asia after the man who drove the strategy announced his retirement. Mike Smith will quit after eight years at the helm to be replaced by Mr Elliott, the lender’s chief financial officer, at the end of this year... Read more

An investor uprising against AMP Capital has turned into open warfare, with accusations of conflicts of interest and chronic underperformance. Hong Kong's LIM Advisors has joined a public campaign against AMP Capital's China Growth Fund, which it says has underperformed its peers by a large margin over a number of years... Read more

David Jones website hacked, customer data stolen... Read more

Customer data stolen in Kmart Australia hack... Read more

Volkswagen customers in Australia should find out next week whether their cars will be recalled as part of the emissions-cheating scandal that has rocked the German car maker... Read more

Business groups warn of ghost town in Melbourne on grand final eve public holiday... Read more

Jury awards $2.7 million to woman burned by exploding e-cigarette... Read more

Analysis - Catie Low and Andrew Hornery: Iain Nairn's reign at David Jones may have been hobbled by broken foot... Read more

Analysis/Opinion -Peter Ker: Finding the floor: Could the resources sector finally be bottoming out?... Read more

International Headlines

U.S. Market Report: There's no sugarcoating it. The September jobs report was not good. And it's adding to the considerable amount of confusion that investors have about the global economy and financial markets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all fell sharply in early morning trading Friday..... Read more

North/South Americas Market Report: North and South American markets are broadly higher today with shares in Brazil leading the region. The Bovespa is up 3.35% while U.S.'s S&P 500 is up 1.13% and Mexico's IPC is up 0.14%... Read more

European Market Report: European markets finished higher today with shares in London leading the region. The FTSE 100 is up 0.95% while France's CAC 40 is up 0.73% and Germany's DAX is up 0.46%... Read more

Asian Market Report: Asian markets finished broadly higher today with shares in Hong Kong leading the region. The Hang Seng is up 3.17% while China's Shanghai Composite is up 0.48% and Japan's Nikkei 225 is up 0.02%... Read more

Oil prices climbed in Asia Friday ahead of the release of a US jobs report and as a hurricane threatened refineries on the US east coast. In afternoon Asian trade, US benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for November delivery advanced 57 cents to $45.31 and Brent crude for November added 37 cents to $48.06 a barrel.... Read more

Crude rose after U.S. explorers reduced the number of rigs drilling for oil to a five-year low, signaling further drops in production... Read more

Ugly jobs report casts doubt over 2015 Fed rate hike... Read more

U.S. job growth stumbles, raising doubts on economy... Read more

When the U.S. jobs report is released each month, there's typically enough nuance to offer something for everyone — the good and the bad. Today proved to be a feast for the bears. "When you look through all the details of the data, there just isn't anything good to hang your hat on," said Thomas Simons, a money-market economist at Jefferies LLC in New York. "It's been years since we've seen such an unambiguously bad report."... Read more

Hackers have stolen personal information on about 15 million T-Mobile US customers and applicants. The breach was at a unit of the credit agency Experian, which T-Mobile uses to process information on subscribers. Names, birth dates and social security numbers are among data stolen, but not financial details, the firms said... Read more

Millions of T-Mobile customers exposed in Experian breach... Read more

Investors dumped Glencore as fast as they could earlier this week but the company's directors and senior executives are pouring millions into the struggling commodities giant. The shares collapsed by 29% on Monday, forcing the mining and trading conglomerate to dismiss market talk that it was at risk of going under... Read more

Wal-Mart Reaches 'Line in Sand' Moment in Push to Improve Stores. For months, a digital clock has counted relentlessly down -- minutes, hours, days -- inside the headquarters of Wal-Mart Stores Inc... Read more

Apple Inc. acquired a U.K. software startup that could give its digital assistant Siri a boost. VocalIQ, based in Cambridge, England, has built software aimed at making it easier for people to speak to computers in a more natural way, an area in which Siri and other voice-recognition services have struggled... Read more

Google will become Alphabet today... Read more

Amazon bars the sale of Apple and Google TV devices... Read more

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said growth is returning in Europe, after the region failed to make a major contribution to the global expansion in the past seven or eight years. “The progress achieved over the past three years to stabilize and strengthen the euro area is real,” Draghi said in remarks prepared for delivery at an event in New York Thursday evening. “Growth is returning. The way forward is well identified. And we will not rest until our monetary union is complete.”... Read more

Gains in commodity producers led U.K. stocks higher, after worse-than-forecast U.S. jobs data briefly sent the FTSE 100 Index down... Read more

Air France KLM is reported to be cutting 2,900 jobs after talks with pilots unions were unsuccessful. Air France would not confirm the number of cuts, but said it would present a cost-cutting plan on Monday... Read more

French and Italian authorities have opened inquiries into Volkswagen over the rigging of emissions tests. Italy's competition watchdog said it had received several complaints from consumer groups against the company. Meanwhile, the Paris prosecutor told Reuters it was investigating suspicions of "aggravated deception".... Read more

Two weeks after it admitted to cheating diesel emissions tests, Volkswagen provided the first information on Friday allowing customers to find out if their vehicles are affected. The German carmaker, which has said it will have to refit up to 11 million cars and vans containing illegal software, rolled out a website page that tells owners who input data about their vehicles whether they will have to bring them into the garage... Read more

Spain's Credit Rating Upgraded to BBB+ by S&P... Read more

The world has come to love Swedish massage, Swedish meatballs, even IKEA. The world may love the next big thing coming out of Sweden -- the six hour work day. The 40 hour work week for a full-time employee has been trimmed to 30 hours at some Swedish firms, and studies have found that the result is more productivity and better morale.... Read more

1MDB CEO: We are the 'most investigated company'.... Read more

Japan's household spending rebounds but recession looms... Read more

Wynn Resorts Ltd. rose the most in more than six years, leading casino stocks higher following a report that the Chinese government plans steps to revive the flagging gambling industry in Macau, where betting has been in freefall... Read more

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