Solid profit season moving to a close

Financial journalist and commentator on 3AW and Sky Business
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Three weeks in, the 2013-14 interim profit reporting season has definitely been better than expected – which helps to explain how the S&P/ASX 200 managed to touch a post-GFC high (at 5,452.4 points) on Friday.

Across the market, broking firm and investment bank analysts have lifted their market (index) target, on the back of profit and dividend increases from companies, help from the weaker Australian dollar, continuing low interest rates and the ongoing commitment to cost-cutting that companies have demonstrated over the last several reporting seasons.

Things are looking good

The generally positive tone of reported results this interim season has boosted optimism on the likely strength of the index, allowing January’s 3.3% fall to be regained, and the market is clearly in the black for 2014. The most optimistic of the major brokers, Citi, reckons the S&P/ASX 200 Index can gain a further 6.6% – to 5,800 points – by the end of the 2013-14 financial year.

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