ASX 200 weekly wrap: ANZ, Westpac, CBA & BHP down

Weakness across the major banks and some heavyweight health stocks contributed to the Australian share market’s falls last week.

ANZ

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 dropped 0.45% to 6,175 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index fell 0.35% to close at 6,265 points last week.

The major banks closed lower, with three of the big four dominating market value losses, while the healthcare sector was partly weighed down by stocks trading ex-dividend.

ANZ led losses, with its market value falling by $2.2 billion after its shares ended last week 2.8% lower at $26.35. Its weak performance was partly due to a broker downgrade on Friday, CommSec analysts say.

Canstar’s Group Executive of Financial Services Steve Mickenbecker said a downgrading of economic growth expectations has weighed on bank share prices.

“This adds to the headwinds of slowing demand for housing, tougher regulatory standards, implementation cost and restraint of the banking royal commission’s recommendations and potential for class actions,” Mr Mickenbecker said.

“A further slowing in demand for housing and business credit will hurt revenue and there is the prospect of the first blowout in bad debts in several years.”

Among the stocks to trade ex-dividend last week was biotech giant CSL and aged care operator Regis Healthcare, with the former shedding $1.6 billion in market value.

ASX 200 Listed Companies – Top 5 Biggest Market Cap Gains and Losses  (08/03/2019 to 15/03/2019)
Biggest Gains Biggest Losses
Rank Company $ Change in Market Cap Closing Share Price % Change in Share Price Rank Company $ Change in Market Cap Closing Share Price % Change in Share Price
1 WiseTech Global (WTC) $605,187,694 $22.49 9.8% 1 ANZ Banking (ANZ) -$2,191,411,922 $26.35 -2.8%
2 Telstra Corporation (TLS) $475,731,914 $3.26 1.2% 2 Westpac Banking (WBC) -$1,723,785,512 $26.48 -1.9%
3 RIO Tinto (RIO) $389,777,025 $91.65 1.2% 3 CSL (CSL) -$1,556,019,202 $195.93 -1.7%
4 Stockland (SGP) $336,733,340 $3.81 3.8% 4 Commonwealth Bank (CBA) -$1,540,108,371 $72.31 -1.2%
5 Transurban (TCL) $321,035,801 $12.65 1.0% 5 BHP (BHP) -$1,178,340,558 $36.48 -1.1%
Prepared by Canstar. Prices taken as of week to week close.

Weaker base metal prices contributed to a slide in BHP’s shares, while Rio Tinto fared better and finished the week higher.

AMP Capital Chief Economist Shane Oliver said global markets rebounded last week, while the local market fell with consumer and financial shares down on worries about the domestic economy.

Dr Oliver said the Australian 10-year bond yield also dropped below 2% for the first time in about three years as weakening economic data added to expectations for RBA rate cuts.

“Australian data was soft over the last week with falls in business confidence, consumer confidence and housing finance,” he said.

“The ongoing fall in housing finance indicates that tight credit conditions are continuing.”

ASX 200 Listed Companies – Top 5 Biggest Share Price Gains and Losses (08/03/2019 to 15/03/2019)
Biggest Gains Biggest Losses
Rank Company Closing Share Price % Change Rank Company Closing Share Price % Change
1 WiseTech Global (WTC) $22.49 9.8% 1 Sigma Health (SIG) $0.53 -14.6%
2 Saracen Mineral (SAR) $2.79 8.6% 2 Ardent Leisure (ALG) $1.27 -13.3%
3 Bellamy’s Australia (BAL) $11.20 8.2% 3 Seven West Media (SWM) $0.50 -7.4%
4 Perpetual (PPT) $41.59 8.1% 4 Infigen Energy (IFN) $0.47 -7.0%
5 St Barbara (SBM) $4.50 7.9% 5 Syrah Resources (SYR) $1.08 -6.9%
Prepared by Canstar. Prices taken as of week to week close.

Logistics software company WiseTech Global was the market’s strongest performer last week, with its shares jumping by nearly 9% to $22.49 and its market value growing by more than $600 million.

Meanwhile, property group Stockland was among the top five winners when it came to overall value gains.

News coming out of Stockland last week was that it will sell more of its shopping and commercial centres in Brisbane, which the company said it considered as “non-core” retail assets.

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