S&P 500 2,441.20 17.28
Gold$1,224.80 $5.30
Nasdaq 6,253.81 61.92
Crude Oil $60,490.00      $-1570.00
Market Update

Australian Markets Soar 1.9%, Iron Ore Price at 6-Year Low


Author: Marcus Jacob
ticker.com
Last Update: 11:20 AM ET March 19 2015

5:30 PM Sydney – Australian market indexes soared following Fed announcement. BHP, Rio and Fortescue were in focus after 5% drop in iron ore price to a six-year low. Myer Holdings declined to a new low after first-half profit declined 23%.

Australian market indexes soared on the back of higher closing in New York after the U.S. Fed left interest rates unchanged and estimated low rates to continue in the near future.

Investors bid up stocks after a week of volatility and the Aussie dollar gained but traders speculated interest rate in Australia to head lower after the latest Fed statement.

However, resource stocks were in focus after the spot iron ore price in China dropped 5.4% to US$54.50 a ton, a low not seen since early 2009.

Iron ore price has declined 15% in the month after plunging 40% in 2014 and traders are speculating the price to test $50 price level.

Large iron ore miners in Australia are still generating profit as the cash cost of mining has dipped below $25 a ton.

Australian dollar closed at 77.34 U.S. cents and in stock trading turnover climbed to 1 billion shares worth $7.1 billion.

ASX 200 Index climbed 108.50 or 1.9% to 5,950.80 and broader All Ordinaries Index jumped 104.50 or 1.8% to 5,912.50.

In commodities trading, gold soared US$21 to US$1,171 an ounce and light crude oil gained US$1.46 to US$46.65 a barrel.

Brent crude fell 56 cents to close at US$55.35 a barrel.

Australian Stock Movers

Myer Holdings Limited tumbled 10.1% to $1.38 after the department store operator reported total sales in the first-half ending in on January 24 jumped 2% to $1.47 billion from $1.45 billion a year ago period.

Profit in the period declined 23% to $62.2 million compared to $80.8 million and diluted earnings per share dropped to 10.5 cents from 13.7 cents in the same period a year ago.

Mount Gibson Iron Limited slumped 2.2% to 22 cents after the iron ore price declined to low not seen since 2008.

OrotonGroup Limited plunged 10% to $2.44 after the luxury fashion retailer said revenues in the first-half ending in on January 24 climbed 6.2% to $66.79 million from $62.92 million a year ago period.

Profit in the period tumbled 57% to $2.2 million compared to $5.1 million and diluted earnings per share slumped to 5.28 cents from 12.37 cents in the same period a year ago.

The company forecasted modest earnings growth in the second-half of the fiscal year.

RCG Corporation Limited after trading halt at 72 cents the Athlete’s footwear chain agreed to acquire New Zealand-based Accent Group, footwear distributor and marketer with Australian license for several international brands for about $200 million.

Accent Group operates 97 stores in Australia and New Zealand.

Sigma Pharmaceutical Limited surged 9.3% to 94 cents after the pharmaceutical products wholesaler reported revenues in the year ending in January advanced 5.7% to $3.14 billion from $2.97 billion a year ago period.

Profit in the period slipped 1.4% to $52.8 million compared to $53.5 million and diluted earnings per share were flat at 4.8 cents from the same period a year ago.

  1
Sources: Data collected by 123jump.com and Ticker.com from company press releases, filings and corporate websites. Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc