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This year. We're going Beyond.

S&P/ASX 200 Monday – 3 things I’m watching this week

The S&P/ASX 200 (ASX: XJO) is expected to take a backwards step when the market opens on Monday. Here’s what’s making headlines.

ASX share market recap

The ASX 200 finished an important week 2.0% higher after adding 0.6% on Friday. The dispersion of returns continued as reporting season gathered steam, with more company-specific than sector moves.

The IT sector was by far the strongest, adding 4.2% after share registry provider Computershare Limited (ASX: CPU) rallied 7.8% as investors digested a strong finish to the financial year.

All eyes were on the RBA Governor’s speech, during which it was made clear that interest rates will remain around 0.25% until at least 2022.

Mesoblast Limited (ASX: MSB) was the standout on Friday, finishing 38% higher after its stem cell treatment got one step further in gaining FDA approval for treating a rare blood disorder in children.

Featured video: ASX results recap – CBA, SEEK, Telstra & more

NAB shows foresight, deferrals slowing

National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB) climbed more than 1% on Friday after releasing its third-quarter update. Management’s decision to raise capital in March is looking prescient after the company reported 10% revenue growth and a 16% reduction in deferred home loans. The bank benefited from a recovery in its Markets and Treasury unit which ensured profit fell just 11.6% to $1.55 billion for the third quarter.

Summary: Great result in the circumstances, supporting a second-half dividend.

Baby Bunting benefiting from a lockdown baby boom

Baby Bunting Ltd (ASX: BBN) finished the week with a bang, reporting 11.8% growth in sales and confirming it was not a recipient of any JobKeeper payments. The strong result was driven by 39% growth in online sales, 66% in the second half as lockdowns tightened. The result was a 34% increase in net profit to $19.3 million and a 25% increase in its dividend; a record payout. Baby Bunting shares surged 10.4% on Friday.

Summary: Earnings season standout, little wonder the company is now sitting at all-time highs.

Praemium showing the future for advice

Investment platform provider Praemium Ltd (ASX: PPSannounced 91% profit growth to $49 million despite volatile sharemarkets. Assets under management (AUM) increased 14% to $20.3 billion and should be further bolstered by the acquisition of Powerwrap Ltd (ASX: PWL), which has $8 billion (AUM) of its own. The highlight was a 73% increase in managed account assets of $4.8 billion as financial advisers flock to the platform.

Summary: Excellent year in challenging conditions, adviser tailwind to continue.

What to watch for this week

Sharemarkets will face a weak lead after the S&P 500 finished flat, adding just 0.6% for the week. With a lack of economic data ahead and US earnings season all but over, investors will likely focus on heightened geopolitical risk.

The three things I’m watching for to start the week are earnings results from JB Hi-Fi Limited (ASX: JBH) and Lendlease Group (ASX: LLC) on Monday, and the outlook for what has become the most popular investment of 2020, gold bullion (and gold stocks).

I’m wary of the impacts of Victoria’s lockdown on JB Hi-Fi’s earnings result, with risk to the downside, and will be interested to see if Lendlease decides to devalue its massive portfolio of property assets.

Despite being quoted regularly on his avoidance of an investment in gold, Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK.A) announced it had purchased $565 million of gold miner Barrick Gold Corp. (NYSE:GOLD).

This article was written by Drew Meredith, Financial Adviser and Director of Wattle Partners. To get in contact with Drew, click here to visit the Wattle Partners website.

Is BNPL the opportunity of a lifetime or is the sector a ticking time bomb?

Rask's analyst has just finished a 7,500-word report, The Ultimate BNPL Sector Report, taking a deep dive into this booming ASX sector. It shines a spotlight on each of the major players. You can get the full analyst report for FREE by CLICKING HERE NOW or entering your email below.

Note: the report is 100% free.

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Is BNPL the opportunity of a lifetime or is the sector a ticking time bomb?

Rask's analyst has just finished a 7,500-word report, The Ultimate BNPL Sector Report, taking a deep dive into this booming ASX sector. It shines a spotlight on each of the major players. You can get the full analyst report for FREE by CLICKING HERE NOW.

Note: the report is 100% free.

Disclosure: Drew Meredith is the author of this post. He may maintain positions in the securities mentioned.

Information warning: The information on this website is published by The Rask Group Pty Ltd (ABN: 36 622 810 995) is limited to factual information or (at most) general financial advice only. That means, the information and advice does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It is not specific to you, your needs, goals or objectives. Because of that, you should consider if the advice is appropriate to you and your needs, before acting on the information. If you don’t know what your needs are, you should consult a trusted and licensed financial adviser who can provide you with personal financial product advice. In addition, you should obtain and read the product disclosure statement (PDS) before making a decision to acquire a financial product. Please read our Terms and Conditions and Financial Services Guide before using this website. The Rask Group Pty Ltd is a Corporate Authorised Representative (#1280930) of AFSL #383169.

Keep reading:

Rask Media’s Ultimate BNPL Sector Report

Afterpay, Zip, Sezzle… is this the opportunity of a lifetime? Or is BNPL a ticking time bomb? This 7,500-word analyst report takes a deep dive into the BNPL sector and shines a spotlight on each of the major players in this booming market. 

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As we emerge from COVID-19, some tech companies are growing faster than ever. Rask’s investment analysts have identified 3 growth stocks set to benefit. Big time.

Enter your email below to access this report for free, including the names, ticker codes and analysis.

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