4:30 PM Sydney – Australian market indexes rebounded and the Aussie dollar advanced. Rio Tinto is expected to announce a new round of write-offs resulting in a quarterly loss of $5 billion. BHP eliminates 230 jobs at a venture with Mitsubishi. Regional Express tumbled 10%.
Australian investors looked overseas and bid up market indexes. Japan reported the record smallest current account surplus raising fears about the country’s ability to service foreign currency debt.
In Europe, Germany reported a decline industrial production in December and UK reported trade deficit narrowed to $1.84 billion in December from $6.6.1 billion in November.
Australian dollar gained to 89.38 U.S. cents and in stock market trading turnover declined to 613 million shares worth $3.9 billion.
The ASX 200 index climbed 55.60 or 1.1% to 5,222.10 and the broader All Ordinaries increased 52 to 5,236.50.
Stocks in Review
Rio Tinto jumped $1.06 to $67.02 after report Sam Walsh chief executive officer expected to unveil fresh write-down that may lead to a quarterly loss of $5 billion.
BHP gained 41 cents to $36.50 and the company said it plans to eliminate 230 jobs at its Saraji Mine in Queensland, a coking coal joint venture with Mitsubishi.
Woodside Petroleum Limited rose 15 cents to $37.73.
Westpac increased 52 cents to $31.77 and the banking group said Deputy Chairman John Curtis will retire in April.
National Australian Bank Ltd increased 2% to $33.41 after the media speculation suggested that the company is looking to sell in a transaction or in a public offering of its British banking assets including Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks.
G8 Education Ltd
surged 6.4% to $3.50 after the child care service provider agreed to acquire 63 premium childcare and education centers for $104.7 million.
Regional Express Holdings Ltd
tumbled 10.6% to 80.5 cents after the airline company forecasted profit-before-tax to decline 40% to about $5 million from $12.5 million a year earlier.
Western Areas Limited
climbed 4.4% to $2.87 after the nickel producer expected to report better results on key measures including operating margins, EBITDA and net profit-after-tax compared to prior six-months.