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Reporting Season Update

Cabcharge Australia Ltd (CAB, Sell)  

CAB reported poor 1H18 results:- revenue gains of +13.8% were largely driven by volumes on increased fleet numbers from the Yellow Cabs acquisition, underlying EBITDA was down -35.3% on pcp and underlying NPAT fell 40.7% on pcp.  Management reiterated comments that CAB is “investing in a national brand – 13CABS” and a “New Cabcharge” through marketing and technology investment.  On a statutory basis, CAB recorded a net loss after tax of -$5.1m, due to significant non-cash impairment charge of $12.3m on Taxi licence plates. The interim dividend was declared at 4cps fully franked, down -60% from 10cps in 1H17Key points: (1) Management noted that Yellow Cabs is expected to deliver ~$3.5m EBITDA on an annualized basis. The acquisition of Yellow Cabs QLD increased total fleet size by 1,210, raising the total number of cars to 8,729 cars in 1H18(2) 

During 1H18. CAB finalised their Fuel Card partnership with Viva Energy, which aims to provide discounted fuel to 13CABS Drivers and Operators, with rollout planned to occur in 2H18(3) FY18 outlook. No specific earnings guidance provided but management commented that favourable trends in payment turnover and fleet growth experienced during 1H18 have extended into 2H18, with double digit growth in fares processed from bank issued and third-party cards compared to pcp.   

Caltex Australia Limited (CTX, Buy)

CTX’s results were strong over the full-year, posting a Replacement Cost Operating Profit (RCOP) of $621m, up +18% on pcp and marginally above management’s guidance range of $600 – 620m. Total Group revenue was up +19.5% at $21.4bn while underlying replacement cost EBIT grew +15.0% to $935m. Underlying EPS was up +19.6% to 238cps and a final dividend of 61.0cps was declared (+17.3% on pcp). Key points: (1) Management continued to note the strong operating contribution from the Lytton Refinery which took advantage of healthy refiner margins. (2) The acquisition of Milemaker and Gull NZ was completed through the year – incurring a capex of $424m. (3) CTX commenced the operations of two new businesses at the start of CY18; Fuels & Infrastructure (Supply, B2B, Refining and Infrastructure), and Convenience Retail (Petrol and Convenience). Management will begin reporting on the basis of these new divisions as of the interim report in August. (4) CTX has commenced operatorship of 26 new ‘The Foodary’ pilot stores as part of its Convenience Retail business. The Company announced today that it will strive to move all retail franchise sites into company-operation by mid-2020. (5) A 20% equity investment in SeaOil Philippines was also announced, expected for completion by 1Q18.

Costa Group Holdings (CGC, Neutral) 

CGC delivered a strong 1H18 result, with management increasing their guidance for FY18 from 20% NPAT-S growth to 25% NPAT-S growth. Group revenue was up +9.8%, whilst operating earnings before SGARA (self-generating and regenerating assets) was up +24.2%. NPAT (before significant items and SGARA) was up +14.5% to $28.6m. Earnings growth for the half was driven by strong performances in the citrus and tomatoes segments, while mushroom and berry lagged somewhat. CGC also announced various M&A activity, notably a +37% increased stake in its African Blue operations (berry-growing in Morocco). An interim dividend of 5cps was declared, up 1cps (+25%) on pcp.
Alice LeMessurier No Comments

Markets on my mind

Monday Morning Report

Global Markets Update 

  • US markets. US markets finished higher on Friday’s close, as investors overlooked the played out risk of a government shutdown in the US. The S&P 500 and Dow Jones both rose, gaining +0.4% and +0.2% respectively. The USD resumed declines amongst prolonged debt ceiling talks and the US government shutdown continued for a second day.
  • Long-dated US treasury yields rose, with the 2-Yr yield at 2.06%, and the 10-Yr yield continuing to rise +1.28bps to 2.66%.
  • European markets. European markets rose as investors awaited corporate earnings announcements to be released in the coming week. The Stoxx 600 (+0.5%), the DAX (+1.2%) and the FTSE 100 (+0.4%) all experienced gains, with personal and household goods firms leading rises, up +1.6%.
  • Asian markets. Asian stocks rose for the sixth week in a row, in accordance with optimism over global growth prospects. The Hang Seng (+0.4%), Shanghai Composite (+0.4%), Nikkei (+0.2%) and Kospi (+0.2%) all experienced gains, led by the strong performance of industrial and technology stocks.
  • The WTI oil price fell -0.9%, trading at US$63.37/bbl. Iron ore prices remained flat, trading at US$73.02 per tonne. Spot gold prices rose +0.4% to US$1,332 per ounce.

ASX Market Update 

  • ASX performance. On Friday’s close, the ASX200 retreated from the week’s earlier gains, falling -0.1% to 6,005.81. Losses across Telcos (-1.2%), Energy (-0.7%) and Metals & Mining (-0.6%) dragged on the index, overpowering gains in Consumer Staples (+0.9%).
  • A2 Milk Co Ltd (A2M) experienced another day of gains (+5.2%), after the Company announced expansion into the North East region of the US earlier last week. Lithium stocks Orocobre Ltd (ORE), Galaxy Resources Ltd (GXY) and Mineral Resources Ltd (MIN) continued their fall, down -9.3%, -7.4% and -6.6% respectively as forecasts for lithium prices continued to fall. Spark Infrastructure Group (SKI) fell -3.3%, its biggest drop in two months.

Today’s trading. In Australia and the US, no significant data release is expected