View in Other Languages 19027 12800 8693 8460 8123 7469 
Australian Market Report of August 23, 2010: NIB Holdings (ASX:NHF) Net Profit Up 158%
Australian Market Report of August 23, 2010: NIB Holdings (ASX:NHF) Net Profit Up 158%
Sydney, Aug 23, 2010 AEST (ABN Newswire) - Australian shares opened marginally lower following Wall Street's weak lead. Investors continued to place focus on the local news while the earnings season entered the final stage. The Australian dollar also opened lower on Monday over the federal election uncertainty. The local unit was trading at 88.63 US cents, down 0.44 per cent from Friday's close of 89.03 US cents.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index moved back to the positive territory soon after the market opened this morning. The broader All Ordinaries Index also seesawed around flat in early trade.

Company News

Health insurer NIB Holdings (ASX:NHF) has increased full year net profit by 158 per cent to A$61.5 million, compared to A$23.8 million in FY09. The company said progress had been made during the year to develop new revenue streams in cover for overseas students and workers. The outlook for FY11 is positive, with the challenge of maintaining NIB's record of strong earnings growth. The company also expects a policyholder growth between five and six per cent in 2010-11.

Prime Infrastructure (ASX:PIH) and Brookfield Infrastructure (NYSE:BIP) (TSE:BIP.UN) have entered into a definitive merger agreement to create a leading global infrastructure company, in a transaction with an implied value of A$1.6 billion for the Prime Infrastructure. Prime security holders will receive 0.24 Brookfield units for each Prime stapled security held, representing a price of A$4.6 per Prime Security.

Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) today said its business had performed solidly over the June quarter. The bank reported cash earnings of A$1.4 billion in the quarter. Asset quality had continued to stabilise with impairment charges for the quarter declining to about A$300 million, from an average of about A$440 million in the preceding two quarters and A$800 million per quarter during fiscal 2009. But CEO Mrs Gail Kelly said that the operating environment remained challenging as conditions in Europe and signs of slowing growth in the US continue to create global uncertainty.

RCG Corporation Limited (ASX:RCG) has reported a record full year profit and final dividend for the year ended 27 June 2010 on the back of continued strong trading by its operating businesses. RCG has lifted consolidated net profit after tax by 30.6 per cent from A$5.3 million to A$6.9 million for the 2010 financial year. The company said strong sales have continued in chain-store in the new financial year with like-for-like growth across all states and territories.

Contact

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


Related Companies

Westpac Banking Corp        
RCG Corporation Limited       
Prime Infrastructure Group         
NIB Holdings Limited        
Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P.         

ABN Newswire This Page Viewed:  (Last 7 Days: 7) (Last 30 Days: 42) (Since Published: 19027) 

View in Other Languages 19027 12800 8693 8460 8123 7469  (64572)