Macquarie Tracking “Broadly In Line”

By Glenn Dyer | More Articles by Glenn Dyer

Nothing startling from the Macquarie Group (MQG) trading update yesterday with the bank telling investors that it is on track to broadly match last year’s record earnings.

That didn’t however please some investors and the shares fell 3% at one stage yesterday, which in turn helped trigger a slide in the bank sector generally and a fall in the ASX 200 under the 5,600 point level.

The market then rebounded late in the session with the ASX 200 closing at 5,621 on news of a jump in Chinese iron ore futures and the more optimistic tone seen by analysts in the Reserve Bank’s statement after it left interest rates on hold.

Macquarie shares steadied in later trading to be down around 1.4% at $82.75.

That is except to say that the surge in trading revenues seen by other big banks, such as JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley, not to mention Bank America in the December quarter and into early 2017 seems to have escaped Macquarie.

Trading conditions across the group were "satisfactory," the company said the update to the ASX. Full-year earnings will be "broadly in line" with last year’s result.

As well as being the country’s biggest investment bank, Macquarie is the world’s largest manager of infrastructure assets.

The update and associated documents were lodged with the ASX ahead of the group holding its annual operational briefing for investors.

Macquarie’s so-called annuity style businesses, spanning asset management, corporate and asset finance, and banking and financial services, produced an improved contribution to profit in the December quarter.

But for the nine months ended December 31 their profit contribution was "slightly down" on the same period a year earlier when the asset management unit booked strong performance fees.

Before today’s trading update, the average estimate of 13 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was that the firm will post a record $2.13 billion profit for the year to March 31. Full-year results will be released May 5.

Glenn Dyer

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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