What matters this week: Nothing (much) to see here
There was every indication that the Christmas slowdown has already started...
Metcash H1 FY-18 result. Revenue up 7.6% and underlying earnings up 19.6%. A strong performance was driven by the hardware division; an addition of Home Timber & Hardware to the hardware portfolio. The company, the wholesaler to the IGA chain, noted continued difficult food trading conditions. The results were well received by the market, +8.9% on the day of the announcement.
Listed childcare operator G8 Education released a profit downgrade. Short-term pressures and oversupply will impact expected earnings for FY-18.
Graphite miner Syrah Resources has announced it has signed a binding sales agreement with Zhanjiang Juxin New Energy Materials, the agreement is for 20,000 tonnes of natural graphite from the Balama operation in 2018. The stock rose 7.5%. Oil & gas producer AWE fell 10% on news that State-owned China Energy Reserve dropped its plans for a bid for the company. Moving to larger companies, South32 had a good bounce on Tuesday (+3.7%) with its announcement that it was scaling back spending plans this FY.
Thinking of big movers: Qantas had a soggy week, -6.5% on oil price concerns. On the upside, Telstra continued to recover from recent weakness up 6% over the week.