Energy shares pop, ASX extends gains

·3-min read

Investors punished some share prices after the latest round of earnings reports but it has been what executives have left out that has likely concerned most.

Protective equipment maker Ansell, building materials supplier Boral and online shopping provider Kogan were all whacked by investors after giving full-year earnings on Tuesday.

Ansell shares lost more than nine per cent on supply concerns. Boral shed more than five per cent after not providing a final payout. Kogan dropped more than 15 per cent after a hugely reduced profit from holding too much stock.

While Ansell and Boral improved profit, their leaders' lack of confidence on business conditions going forward troubled investors.

Investsmart market strategist Evan Lucas said while the earnings season had been a good one, fewer company leaders were providing outlook statements than had been expected.

"Investors should be looking forward," he said.

"But the fact companies are hesitant to explain what they see going forward is understandable."

A major reason is concern the global economy is slowing.

The coronavirus' Delta variant continues to keep millions of people across NSW and Victoria locked down, and threatens economic recovery overseas.

Mr Lucas also named falling iron ore prices, and their effects on Australia's mining giants, as another concern making it hard to forecast earnings.

The falls in Ansell, Boral and Kogan were not enough for ASX losses however.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed higher by 13.1 points, or 0.17 per cent, to 7503 on Tuesday.

The All Ordinaries closed up 12.6 points, or 0.16 per cent, to 7773.7.

A good lead from the US helped, after US authorities approved another COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE.

Energy stocks soared around the world after oil prices rebounded from seven days of losses.

On the ASX, there were gains of more than three per cent for Beach Energy, Santos and Woodside.

Travel stocks did particularly well. There were gains of more than six per cent for Flight Centre and Webjet. Qantas rose by more than five per cent.

Miners BHP, Fortescue and Rio Tinto closed higher by more than one per cent

Consumer staples shares were least popular. Coles slipped by more than three per cent to $18.26.

Earnings reports on Wednesday are due from Afterpay and chief rival Zip. Insurer Medibank Private and cargo software vendor WiseTech Global are among others to provide figures.

Westfield shopping centres operator Scentre was one to really please investors.

It swung to a half-year profit of $400.4 million after shoppers returned from lockdowns in the first half of the year.

Investors were not deterred by the current lockdown impact in NSW and Victoria.

Shares closed higher by 6.67 per cent to $2.72.

Banks' performances on the ASX were uneventful. The Commonwealth lost 0.26 per cent. The others in the big four were all higher by no more than 0.5 per cent.

The Australian dollar was buying 72.34 US cents at 1725 AEST, lower than 71.60 US cents at Monday's close.


* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed higher by 13.1 points, or 0.17 per cent, to 7503 on Tuesday.

* The All Ordinaries closed up 12.6 points, or 0.16 per cent, to 7773.7.

* At 1725 AEST, the SPI200 futures index was trading even to 7435 points.


One Australian dollar buys:

* 72.34 US cents, from 71.60 cents on Monday

* 79.40 Japanese yen, from 78.63 yen

* 61.61 Euro cents, from 61.07 cents

* 52.70 British pence, from 52.43 pence

* 104.26 NZ cents, from 104.62 cents.

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