May 12, 2009 at 16:00 PM EDT
Australian Market Report of May 12: Caution Ahead of the Federal Budget

Overnight US stocks fell sharply as investors locked in gains after weeks of rally. Some banks and financial institutions' decision on capital raising also weighed down the market.

The Australian share market ended lower on Monday, dragged by miners and banks. The market was cautious ahead of the federal budget which will forecast a record deficit tonight. Yesterday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 was down 15.7 points, or 0.4%, at 3926, while the broader All Ordinaries lost 9.1 points, or 0.23%, to 3910.5.

Key Economic Facts and Figures

The National Australia Bank's monthly business survey and economic outlook showed that the business environment has improved in April with government's stimulus package. Business conditions rose seven index points in April to minus-10 points from minus-17 index points in March.

The federal budget due tonight is set to forecast a record deficit of A$58 billion for next financial year. The budget will also predict unemployment to reach 8.5 per cent next year and claim that the Government's stimulus packages will save 200,000 people from losing their jobs.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics releases housing finance data for March on Tuesday.

M&A News

Carnegie Corporation (ASX:CNM) has agreed to buy the intellectual property and global rights to the CETO wave technology from Renewable Energy Holdings (LON:REH). In exchange for the global rights, Carnegie will issue 252 million shares, giving Renewable a 35 per cent stake in the company.

Important Corporate News

Elders Limited (ASX:ELD) has sold its remaining 20% stake in Australian Agricultural Company (ASX:AAC) for A$85 million. The shares were sold through an institutional bookbuild for A$1.60 per share. Elders will use the money to pay down debt and continue the group restructuring.

Boart Longyear (ASX:BLY) is considering a variety of measures to cut its debt. Boart said it planned to raise capital and renegotiate its $US585 million debt facility, which matures in April 2010 by the calendar year's end.

The federal Government is expected to offer Telstra (ASX:TLS) the chance to buy up to 49 per cent of its national broadband network (NBN) when Communications Minister Stephen Conroy meets the company's new leaders in the coming weeks.

Coeur d'Alene Mines Corporation (ASX:CXC) (NYSE:CDE) (TSX:CDM) announced an all-time first quarter production record of 3.9 million ounces of silver during the first quarter of 2009. Which represents a 65% increase in silver production compared to last year's first quarter which was largely driven by new ounces of silver production from the new San Bartolomé silver mine in Bolivia. This significant production growth in the first quarter, the Company commenced production at its Palmarejo mine in Mexico one of the largest new silver/gold mines in the world.

Energy network operator SP Ausnet (ASX:SPN) has entered a trading halt pending a capital raising. The company also is due to deliver its full year results today.

AWB (ASX:AWB) today downgraded first-half profit guidance after it discovered A$4 million in accounting errors. Net profit in the first half of fiscal 2009 was expected to be in the range of A$8 million to A$9 million, down from earlier guidance for A$10-12 million.

Crown Ltd (ASX:CWN) has reached an agreement with Victoria government to expand the number of gaming tables at its casino in Melbourne. The company planned to spend A$46 million to expand and improve its facilities.

Contact:
Michelle Liang
Asia Business News Asia Bureau
Tel: +61-2-9247-4344
Email: michelle.liang@abnnewswire.net
 


Source:
ABN http://www.ABNnewswire.net

Copyright (C) 2009 ABN Newswire. All rights reserved.

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