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ASX bounces back, BNPL reports


ASX bounces back, BNPL reports, Ramsay (ASX:RHC) reinstates dividend 

The ASX200 (ASX:XJO) finished 0.8% higher following a strong US lead overnight, with healthcare and materials leading the way, up 1.7% and 1.4% respectively.

Ramsay Healthcare (ASX:RHC) was the standout, jumping 7.7% after reinstating their dividend at 48.5 cents per share.

  • The private hospital operator reported a ‘resilient’ result, with revenue down 6.6% to $5.9 billion globally, but individual countries offering a glimpse of the pandemic response.

    Asia Pacific led the way with revenue falling just 0.5%, Europe, in general, fell 0.8% but the UK fell 82.5% with the government offering significant support in each case to ensure beds were always available for use.

    Profit fell 12.5% to $226 million in what can only be described as a disastrous year for the healthcare sector, but management confirmed their key Australian operations are now running at around full capacity, offering hopes for a strong 2021 as a backlog of surgeries are completed.

    Qantas (ASX:QAN) crashed to a $1.1 billion loss, down from a $445 million profit after revenue dropped 75% in the first half of the year.

    The focus now is on the ‘certainty’ provided by the vaccine rollout with investors seeing the positive side, sending shares 1.5% higher.

    Income, customers, sales double at Zip Co (ASX:Z1P), Qube Holdings (ASX:QUB) selling Moorebank, A2 Milk (ASX:A2M) running dry

    The battle of the BNPL giants continued today, with both releasing half-year results at the same time.

    Focusing on the growth, which is the most important for investors, Z1P appears the standout, at least in the short-term and likely from a lower base.

    APT reported a 106% increase in platform sales, Z1P 141%. Platform income or company revenue increased 108% and 131% respectively and active customers continued their recent trends, jumping 80% and 217%.

    Scale is as important as ever in this line of business, with APT’s 13.1 million customers twice the level of Z1P at 5.7 million.

    APT shares went into a trading halt as management seek to raise US$1.25 billion via a convertible note whilst Z1P shares fell 7.7% once again showing their volatile nature.

    Port and infrastructure owner Qube Holdings (ASX:QUB) reported a 9.3% increase in profit for the half-year, citing strong mining exports and a pickup in container volumes as the key drivers.

    Management announced a 2.5 cent per share dividend, a cut on the previous year, but positive given the environment and enough to send the shares 1.6% higher.

    The company announced that the property and warehousing portion of their Moorebank Terminal will be sold for $1.65 billion to LOGOS, a property investor, with the intermodal rail terminal to be retained.

    A2 Milk (ASX:A2M) appears to be running dry with the share price falling 16.2% as revenue and profit fell 16% and 35% respectively.

    The company clearly became too reliant on the less structured ‘Daigou’ channel in its efforts to expand in China, which was effectively shut down during the pandemic.

    Tech falls continue as bond yields hit 1.6%, NVIDIA smashes expectations

    US markets fell in unison once again, with four stocks lower for every one that gained. 

    The Nasdaq remains under extreme pressure, falling 3.5% as US bond yields exacerbate valuation concerns on loss making businesses.

    The S&P500 fell 2.5% and the Dow Jones 1.8% with consumer and energy companies unable to offset the falls.

    Telsa Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) was one of the hardest hit falling 8.2%, with chipmaker NVIDIA also down 8.3%.

    The well-known ARK Innovation ETF, which is heavily invested in these well-known tech names fell another 5.9% as outflows continue to surge.

    Chipmaker NVIDIA reported record quarterly sales exceeding US$5 billion for the first time in its history, a 61% increase on 2019 levels.

    The company overcame weakness in the automotive chip business, which is facing product shortages and saw sales fall 11%, with 91% sales growth in their data centre business and 67% in their gaming business.

    The company is effectively powering the evolution of the digital economy with management highlighting the huge potential in products ranging from smart tractors and lawnmowers to air conditioners; all backed by an NVIDIA chip.

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