BHP, Karoon, Myer, News Corp, Santos: Australian Stock Preview

The following is a list of companies whose shares may have unusual moves in Australia. The preview includes news announced after markets closed on Sept. 16. All prices are from that day’s close unless otherwise stated.

The S&P/ASX 200 Index futures contract due in December gained 0.2 percent to 4,163 as of 6:54 a.m. in Sydney. The Bank of New York Australia ADR Index climbed 0.8 percent. The S&P/ASX 200 Index advanced 1.9 percent to 4,149.40.

Mining companies: A measure of primary metals traded in London fell 0.4 percent on Sept. 16. Copper futures for December delivery declined 0.6 percent on the Comex in New York.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP AU), the world’s No. 1 mining company, rose 1.6 percent to A$38.23. Its American depositary receipts gained 0.1 percent in New York trading.

Rio Tinto Group (RIO AU), the world’s second-largest mining company by sales, added 2.7 percent to A$71.27 in Sydney.

Oil stocks: Crude oil for October delivery dropped 1.6 percent on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Sept. 16.

Woodside Petroleum Ltd. (WPL AU), Australia’s second-biggest oil and gas producer, advanced 3.1 percent to A$34.25. Santos Ltd. (STO AU), Australia’s third-largest oil and gas producer, gained 2.1 percent to A$11.45.

Gold producers: Gold futures for December delivery rose 1.9 percent on the Comex in New York on Sept. 16.

Newcrest Mining Ltd. (NCM AU), Australia’s biggest gold producer, was unchanged at A$38.11. St. Barbara Ltd. (SBM AU) dropped 0.5 percent to A$2.20.

Asciano Group (AIO AU): The port cargo handler is in talks with coal producers in the Galilee Basin coal province over developing and operating billions of dollars worth of rail and port infrastructure, the Australian Financial Review reported. The article cites an interview with Chief Executive John Mullen. Asciano climbed 5 percent to A$1.59.

Karoon Gas Australia Ltd. (KAR AU): The natural-gas explorer said its Bonaparte Permit AC/P8 venture was unable to identify a prospect that would represent a viable drilling target. Karoon and venture partner Talisman Oil & Gas (Australia) Pty are seeking to surrender their exploration permit immediately, the company said in a Sept. 16 stock-exchange announcement. Karoon’s shares surged 6.8 percent to A$3.13.

Myer Holdings Ltd. (MYR AU): Online sales may reach 5 percent of its revenue as Australia’s biggest department store chain targets Internet customers and gains in the Australian dollar spur web-based shopping, Chief Executive Officer Bernie Brookes told Australian Broadcasting Corp. television yesterday. Myer’s shares dropped 1 percent to A$2.08.

News Corp. (NWS AU): Shine Group Ltd., Elisabeth Murdoch’s TV-production company and a unit of News Corp., said it bought London-based startup Bossa Studios. Bossa launched its debut title, Monstermind, on Facebook Inc.’s gaming platform on Sept. 16. The game involves players designing and building virtual cities that they defend against monsters.

Separately, prosecutors investigating hacking and bribery allegations at News Corp. are seeking to interview a former employee of a U.S. unit who claims knowledge of illegal activity at the company, according to a person familiar with the matter. News Corp. shares advanced 0.3 percent to A$15.96.

Toll Holdings Ltd. (TOL AU): Australia’s biggest trucking company is looking to make acquisitions to boost its U.S. supply-chain logistics business, Managing Director Paul Little said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. Toll shares gained 2.5 percent to A$4.49.

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