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ASX 200 (XJO) soars 2% higher

The ASX 200 (ASX: XJO) has surged more than 2% higher at lunchtime. US tech shares jumped overnight, helping the Australian share market.

Victorian businesses learned about which businesses would be able to operate and which ones wouldn’t. One of the biggest affected businesses gave an update:

Wesfarmers (ASX: WES) can continue to sell online

Most retail stores in Melbourne are now shut.

Wesfarmers said all of its retail businesses will be able to continue online operations through home delivery and contactless click and collect options.

Bunnings will remain open for trade customers but it will be closed for in-store retail customers.

Kmart and Target stores in Melbourne will be shut for in-store customers. However, Officeworks can service business customers but it will be closed for in-store retail customers.

Wesfarmers also operates non-retail businesses. Blackwoods, Workwear Group, Coregas, Australian Vinyls and Modwood are expected to continue to operate with COVID safe guidelines.

How will this affect Wesfarmers?

Wesfarmers said that in FY20, approximately 17% of retail sales came from stores in metro Melbourne. In Melbourne there are 53 Bunnings, 39 Kmarts, 34 Targets and 42 Officeworks that are probably affected by these new rules.

Afterpay (ASX: APT) completes its capital raising

A month ago the BNPL company said it was raising $650 million from institutional investors to fund its future growth. It was done at a share price of $66.

Regular investors, like you and I, were given the opportunity to buy up $20,000 of new Afterpay shares. Around a fifth of investors decided to take part in the capital raising. The average application size was $13,300.

Afterpay said that the total amount raised from ‘retail’ investors was $136 million.

BWP (ASX: BWP) reports

In FY20, BWP Trust reported that its revenue dropped slightly by 0.3% to $155.8 million. Despite this, profit before gains on investment properties increased by 1% to $117.1 million.

Like-for-like rental growth was 2.4% for the 12 months to 30 June 2020, with the average inflation on consumer price index (CPI) linked leases of 1.6%

The REIT also benefited from $96.7 million of gains in the value of its investment properties, much higher than last year’s $53 million increase. This led to statutory net profit of $210.6 million, an increase of 24.4%.

BWP also revealed that its net tangible assets (NTA) per unit/share increased by 4.8% to $3.06.

At 30 June 2019, BWP said its gearing, being debt divided by total assets, was 19.7%. It was close enough to the Board’s preferred range of 20% to 30%.

BWP increased its FY20 final and total distribution compared to FY19. This morning, the board declared a 9.27 cents per unit (cpu) distribution, in line with estimates announced in late June. This brings total FY20 distributions to 18.29 cpu, representing a 1% increase on distributions declared in FY19.

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At the time of publishing, the author of this article does not have a financial or commercial interest in any of the companies mentioned.

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