BHP, Downer, Flight Centre, Woodside: Australian Equity Preview

The following is a list of companies whose shares may rise or fall in Australia. The preview includes news announced after markets shut yesterday unless otherwise stated.

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (AS51) futures contract expiring in June declined 1 percent to 4,366 as of 6:59 a.m. in Sydney. The S&P/ASX 200 Index dropped 0.4 percent to 4,413.10. The Bank of New York Australia ADR Index slumped 3.5 percent.

Mining shares: Copper fell to a one-week low in New York on concern that demand will slow in China. A measure of metals traded in London dropped 3 percent.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP) , the world’s largest mining company, fell 0.1 percent to A$38.19. Its American depositary receipts lost 3.4 percent in New York.

Rio Tinto Group (RIO) lost 0.4 percent to A$66.88 in Sydney.

Oil companies: Crude oil dropped the most in a week in New York after BP Plc failed to halt the flow of oil from a leaking well in the Gulf of Mexico.

Woodside Petroleum Ltd. (WPL) , Australia’s second-largest oil and gas producer, advanced 1.5 percent to A$43.59. Rival Santos Ltd. (STO AU) rose 1.8 percent to A$12.64.

CFS Retail Property Trust (CFX AU): The Australian real-estate investment trust was downgraded to “neutral” from “overweight” at JPMorgan Chase & Co. Its shares lost 1.6 percent to A$1.90.

Downer EDI Ltd. (DOW) : The Australian engineering company was downgraded to “neutral” from “overweight” at JPMorgan. Downer shares tumbled 27 percent to A$4.58.

CSL Ltd. (CSL) : The Southern Hemisphere’s only flu vaccine maker recalled its seasonal shot for children in Australia after investigations failed to explain a nine-fold increase in fever and convulsions. CSL shares advanced 0.2 percent to A$31.70.

Flight Centre Ltd. (FLT) : Australia’s largest travel agency was raised to “buy” from “neutral” at UBS AG. The stock rose 2.3 percent to A$17.10.

Gloucester Coal Ltd. (GCL AU): The Australian company controlled by Noble Group Ltd. said it’s in talks with its parent to buy some of the commodity supplier’s coal assets in the country. Shares in Gloucester dropped 2.3 percent to A$11.73.

Healthscope Ltd. (HSP AU): Tenet Healthcare Corp. said it was discussing a potential acquisition of Healthscope, the second-largest private hospital company in Australia. Healthscope shares gained 1.5 percent to A$5.57.

Metcash Ltd. (MTS) : Australia’s biggest grocery wholesaler had its stock rating cut to “underperform” from “neutral” by analysts led by Grant Saligari at Credit Suisse Group AG. Metcash shares rose 2.3 percent to A$3.94.

To contact the reporters for this story: Shani Raja in Sydney at sraja4@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey in Tokyo at dboey@bloomberg.net.

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