Bloomberg News

Australia Stocks: Amcor, Coalspur, Fairfax, Macquarie, Mesoblast

October 28, 2011

Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index climbed 0.1 percent to 4353.30 at the close of trading in Sydney. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index gained 0.7 percent to 3325.60 in Wellington.

The following were among the most active shares in the market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.

Mining stocks: The London Metal Exchange Index of prices for six metals, including copper and aluminum, gained 4.8 percent yesterday.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP AU), the world’s No. 1 mining company, rose 0.9 percent to A$38.69. Rio Tinto Group (RIO AU), the second-largest miner by sales, added 0.8 percent to A$70.22. The company’s $581 million offer for Hathor Exploration Ltd. will not face scrutiny from the Canadian government, a Rio Tinto spokesman said.

Amcor Ltd. (AMC AU) slid 4 percent to A$7.05. Australia’s biggest packaging company was downgraded to “neutral” from “overweight” at JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Aquila Resources Ltd. (AQA AU) jumped 5.8 percent to A$6.18. The company said the amount of saleable coal produced at its Isaac Plains mine jumped 71 percent in the quarter ended September from the previous three months.

Coalspur Mines Ltd. (CPL AU) added 5 percent to A$1.89. The coal explorer, which operates in Canada, said it had secured a 14-year port allocation in British Columbia for up to 8.5 million metric tons per year starting in 2015.

Fairfax Media Ltd. (FXJ AU) surged 6.1 percent to 96 Australian cents. The media company said it will retain its metropolitan radio assets, scrapping earlier plans to sell.

Macquarie Group Ltd. (MQG AU) gained 3.3 percent to A$25.15. Australia’s biggest investment bank said it would buy back as much as 10 percent of its shares.

Mesoblast Ltd. (MSB AU) plunged 10.1 percent to A$8.45, the biggest decliner on the benchmark index. The biotechnology company was rated new “underperform” at Macquarie Research.

--Editor: John McCluskey, Jim Powell.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nichola Saminather in Sydney at nsaminather1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at ngentle2@bloomberg.net


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