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Market Update

Australian Banks in Favor, Bega Extends Warnambool Offer Deadline

Author: Marcus Jacob
Last Update: 8:59 AM ET November 26 2013

4:30 PM Sydney – Stocks in Sydney traded higher in choppy trading and Aussie dollar edged up. Banks traded near record high prices as investors rotated out of resource stocks. Bega Cheese extended its offer deadline for Warnambool.

Stocks were in choppy waters in Sydney trading and banks led the gainers offsetting a weakness in resource stocks.

The battle for Warnambool heated up after Bega Cheese extended its offer to December 12, a day before the deadline set by Saputo.

Australian dollar strengthened to 91.85 U.S. cents. In stock trading, turnover climbed to 894 million shares worth $5.1 billion.

The ASX 200 index rose 4.20 to close at 5,357 and the broader All Ordinaries gained 4.50 to 5,350.60.

Stocks in Review

Rio Tinto gained 12 cents to $65.40. BHP rose 6 cents to $37.89. Woodside Petroleum Limited increased 17 cents to $38.42.

Westpac added 2 cents to $32.

ALS Limited declined 3.6% to $8.60 after testing and inspection service provider said revenue in the first-half ending in September dropped 8.5% to $745 million from $813.6 million a year ago.

Profit for the year rose 27.9% to 97.7 million compared to $135.5 million a year earlier.

Ansell Limited closed unchanged at $19.46 after the industrial gloves maker acquired the North American group BarrierSafe Solutions for nearly $615 million.

Aristocrat Leisure Limited slumped 2.9% to $4.63 after the gaming machine manufacturer revenue in the year ending in September soared 39% to $808.7 million from $581.8 million a year ago period.

Profit for the year surged $133.1 million compared to $41.4 million and diluted earnings per share jumped to 19.4 cents to 8.3 cents a year earlier.

Brickworks Limited jumped 2.1% to $13.80 after the building products maker’s managing director Lindsay Partridge said “building products maker saw improved profitability in the September quarter and increase orders in most regions and divisions.

Bega Cheese Limited fell 0.4% to $4.65 after the dairy products maker extended its offer up to December 12, the day before Saputo''s deadline for Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory Co.

Bega already has ACCC approval for its final offer of $2 cash and 1.5 shares of Bega against one share of Warrnambool, currently valued at around $9 a share.

Bega and Murray Goulburn hold around 18% each and Kirin Holdings Co Ltd the food and beverage maker in Australia and Lion holding hold approx 10%.

Canada-based largest milk processor Saputo Inc. raised its offer for Warrnambool Cheese & Butter Factory Co. to $515 million beating two rival bids. Saputo offered $9.20 cash a share up from $9 on condition that it gains more than 50% shareholders approve the deal.

Mayne Pharma Group Limited surged 8.8% to 80 cents after pharmaceutical company lifted its revenues forecast by 230% to $45 million in the first four months of fiscal 2014 boosted by the acquisition of U.S.-based Metrics Inc and lifted the sales outlook of its drug Doryx.

Sources: Data collected by 123jump.com and Ticker.com from company press releases, filings and corporate websites. Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc