ETF news: ASX 200 drops 1%

The ASX 200 (ASX: XJO) is down another 1% at lunch.

What’s making headlines is that Dr Fauci has warned of needless suffering and death if the US opens up too soon. If the economy doesn’t open up as quickly, or has to close again, then that suggests human suffering and it’s also bad for earnings.

Here are some of the headlines from the ASX:

CBA (ASX: CBA) third quarter update

The biggest ASX bank revealed its third quarter update today.

It generated $1.3 billion of statutory net profit of approximately $1.3 billion in the quarter. Cash profit from continuing operations was also $1.3 billion. Operating income was flat. Operating expenses, excluding notable items, was down 1%.

The reported cash net profit was down 44% compared to the average quarter profit from the first half of FY20. The CBA share price is likely to follow earnings over the longer term.

After the payment of FY20 interim dividend and the COVID-19 provision CBA had a CET1 ratio of 10.7%, which is still ‘unquestionably strong’ using APRA’s measure.

The CBA share price is currently up 0.4%>

Stockland (ASX: SGP) update

One of Australia’s largest property businesses announced an update today.

Despite the restrictions, it was able to keep its ‘Retail Town Centres’ open which have shops like supermarkets, fresh food, banking, medical, post offices, fuel, department stores and takeaway food in them.

As a community service, Stockland provided free space for temporary COVID-19 testing centres in several locations.

Stockland said that it is actively reducing or deferring variable and non-critical expenses which is helping cover the costs of COVID-19 expenses like hygiene measures.

It also said that the Board and executive team have take a 20% cut in fees and fixed salaries.

To increase liquidity, it boosted short term and long term debt issuances from $850 million in February 2020 to $1.6 billion at April 2020.

Its full year result remains uncertain, which is why it has withdrawn FY20 guidance for earnings and the distribution.

Disclosure: Jaz does not own shares of any of the shares mentioned at the time of writing. 

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