Global markets were mixed overnight, as the US market hovered near highs. Losses in technology stocks countered by gains in Boeing and Facebook, as investors waited for more clarity on the US-China trade talks.
After last weeks podcast episode, Jeremy got in touch with John Berry, the founder and CEO of Pathfinder Asset Management, you can check out their website by going to www.path.co.nz. Pathfinder are an investment fund, setup in 2009 to focus on investing responsibly and ethically in the global markets. They believe that investors should consider the environmental, social and governance impact of their investments and believe that accounting for these factors is an edge in the market and can improve returns. So we thought who better to talk to than John Berry, who probably knows more about ethical investing than anyone else in New Zealand.
The conversation is unscripted, wide ranging and we also diverge into other topics such as the big macro, globalisation, fund management and we find time to dive into companies such as Facebook and VW.
Listen to the full podcast by clicking HERE
Stock in Focus: Wesfarmers (WES:ASX)
Following a successful re positioning of its portfolio, Wesfarmers shareholders weren’t pleased with their announcement to make a conditional offer to acquire rare earths miner Lynas Corp for $1.5 billion. Fortunately for Wesfarmers, Lynas swiftly rejected the offer and their shares quickly bounced back.
Wesfarmers also delivered a sound result for the first half of the 2019 financial year, the stand out being the $1 per share special dividend on top of the ordinary interim dividend of $1 per share. This was due to disposal of a number of businesses and the demerger of Coles supermarket creating a one-off gain of $3,059m. The disposal of businesses frees up a lot of capital for Wesfarmers to pay down debt, offer special dividends, and allow additional funds to invest and drive growth in their existing portfolio of businesses, as well as making relevant value add acquisitions.
We currently have a HOLD recommendation on Wesfarmers.
Members can login to read our full reports on Wesfarmers.
Australia & New Zealand Market Movers
The Australian share market sold off on Thursday (ASX 200 index -0.83%), ending a 7-day winning streak, with nearly every sector in the red. Ingham's shares dropped on reports that TPG Capital was selling 50 million shares in a block trade worth $214 million. The company is also facing a recall of some of its products over allergy fears, after its Southern Style Tenders were packaged incorrectly in gluten-free schnitzel labelled trays. Graincorp shares rose after the company announced plans to demerge its global malting business to create a new ASX-listed agribusiness.
The New Zealand market retraced again yesterday (NZX 50 index -0.47%) as the maket consolidates after hitting fresh all-time highs earlier in the week. Defensive stocks including Contact Energy, Mercury NZ and Infratil fell. In stock news, SkyCity Entertainment was unchanged after announcing the sale of its Auckland car park for $220 million.
3 Things Markets Will be Watching this Week
- Signals around the health of the global economy will likely remain a focus for investors – with US & Chinese manufacturing data published Monday.
- The Australian government will release their latest Federal Budget on Tuesday.
- The Reserve Bank of Australia also makes an interest rate decision on Tuesday.
Have a Great Day,