ASX 200 weekly: Crown Resorts, Seven, BHP and Fortescue Metals lift

All sectors rose last week to drive the Australian share market higher, with casino operator Crown Resorts among the leaders in share price gains.
crown casino
Source: TK Kurikawa (Shutterstock)

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.14% to 6,251 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index gained 1.23% to finish at 6,347 points last week.

Crown Resorts’ share price soared last Tuesday, following news that Las Vegas gambling giant Wynn Resorts was interested in a takeover.

However, Crown’s shares pulled back the following day after Wynn terminated its offer for James Packer’s Crown, blaming the “premature disclosure” of the negotiations for its decisions to withdraw.

Despite this, investors still boosted Crown’s share price, which gained more than 11% to finish at $13 a share.

Alongside Crown, theme park owner Ardent Leisure led share price gains last week with the Dreamworld owner’s shares also jumping by more than 11% to $1.24.

Ardent’s share price rise came after one of the company’s directors bought a large portion of its shares.

Network Seven owner Seven West Media posted strong gains thanks to the sale of its 50% interest in Yahoo7 to Verizon Media.

The company said it would receive $20.75 million in cash for the sale this financial year, which helped drive Seven’s shares up 9.4% to 53 cents.

Meanwhile, Bank of Queensland’s 7.7% share price slide to $8.76 ranked it among the worst share price losses last week.

This came after the bank announced an 8% slide in its half-year profit, partly attributed to higher wholesale funding costs and greater regulatory costs, which BOQ said has forced it to downgrade its full-year earnings outlook.

Shares in infant formula maker Bellamy’s Australia tumbled last week, following a broker downgrade from Citi analysts, who are now no longer recommending investors buy the stock.

ASX 200 Listed Companies – Top 5 Biggest Share Price Gains and Losses (05/04/2019 to 12/04/2019)
Biggest Gains Biggest Losses
Rank Company Closing Share Price % Change Rank Company Closing Share Price % Change
1 Ardent Leisure (ALG) $1.24 11.2% 1 Syrah Resources (SYR) $1.15 -15.5%
2 Crown Resorts (CWN) $13.00 11.2% 2 Sims Metal Management (SGM) $10.05 -14.3%
3 Seven West Media (SWM) $0.53 9.4% 3 Bellamy’s Australia (BAL) $9.87 -9.0%
4 Appen (APX) $24.52 8.8% 4 Bluescope Steel (BSL) $13.62 -7.9%
5 Perpetual (PPT) $43.19 8.1% 5 Bank of Queensland (BOQ) $8.76 -7.7%
Prepared by Canstar. Prices taken as of week to week close.

The energy sector was a standout as oil prices continued to rise, with oil and gas giant Woodside Petroleum boasting the biggest market value gains last week.

Woodside shares rose 4.9% to $35.76, raising its overall market value by $1.5 billion.

Higher commodity prices also saw BHP and Fortescue Metals in the top five for market value gains, after iron ore prices hit a five-year high on Friday thanks to increased demand from Chinese steelmakers.

Fortescue Metals shares increased 3.7% to $8.07, lifting its market value by about $893 million, while BHP shares increased by 0.9% to $39.58, adding $1 billion to its value.

Commonwealth Bank was in second place when it came to market value gains last week. There has been unconfirmed reports that the bank is considering cutting 10,000 jobs.

AMP Capital Chief Economist Shane Oliver said banking costs, that is the cost of funding loans, continue to fall in a positive sign for lenders.

“Bond yields have collapsed driving down the funding cost for fixed rate mortgages; the interest rates on which the banks are now cutting again,” he said.

Despite this, Westpac fell by 0.5% to $25.92, with its market value decreasing by $448 million.

ASX 200 Listed Companies – Top 5 Biggest Market Cap Gains and Losses   (05/04/2019 to 12/04/2019)
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 Woodside Petroleum (WPL) $1,554,011,571 $35.76 4.9% 1 South32 (S32) -$1,410,650,337 $3.54 -7.3%
2 Commonwealth Bank (CBA) $1,309,977,235 $71.63 1.0% 2 Bluescope Steel (BSL) -$619,829,795 $13.62 -7.9%
3 Transurban (TCL) $1,070,119,338 $13.43 3.1% 3 Westpac Banking (WBC) -$448,184,233 $25.92 -0.5%
4 BHP Group (BHP) $1,060,506,502 $39.58 0.9% 4 Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (URW) -$354,242,460 $12.30 3.4%
5 Fortescue Metals (FMG) $892,899,826 $8.07 3.7% 5 Sims Metal Management (SGM) -$340,536,915 $10.05 -14.3%
Prepared by Canstar. Prices taken as of week to week close.

In other news last week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison called the federal election for May 18, which Dr Oliver said ushers in a period of uncertainty for investors.

“Elections normally see a bit of market nervousness,” he said.

“But with a Labor Government promising a very different approach to economic policy than the Coalition, involving higher taxes, larger government and more intervention in the economy, the May election presents a starker choice than what has been the case since elections in the 1970s.”

He said as a result, he expected there to be greater uncertainty for investors during this election campaign than what has been seen in the past.

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