InvestSMART

Fortescue struggles as energy powers rare gains

PANADOL anyone? This market sure is giving a few people a headache. Our next battle looks like it's going to be another case of not how much the best racer can win but how little they can lose.

PANADOL anyone? This market sure is giving a few people a headache. Our next battle looks like it's going to be another case of not how much the best racer can win but how little they can lose.

In the first week of our race we have six people in positive territory but only time will tell how many of them stay there.

Those racers who picked energy and gas stocks are doing quite well but then we also find mining stocks Fortescue Metals and Golden State Resources on our biggest loser list. Fortescue announced a pretty good quarterly shipment result on Friday - it shipped 12 million tonnes of iron ore - but our week ends on Thursday and founder and chairman Andrew Forrest's battle with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) probably has done its share price some damage.

ASIC is alleging that in 2004 Forrest misled the market by saying it had binding agreements with Chinese construction companies to build a railway, port and mine works where it just had framework agreements. Although Fortescue won the right during the week to take the stoush to the High Court, the fight is not over.

Forrest and Fortescue have come a long way since then but the case still sticks. Possibly most shareholders will be more interested in the company's quarterly update and we will find the company in our biggest winners list next week but, as all our faithful readers know, a week can be a long time in the market.

Long-term investor Varun Sablok is well aware of the fickle investment market. His astute picks have him in first place and more than $3500 ahead. Nexus Energy helped him out and QBE didn't do too badly for him either.

If you would like to compete in the world's premier share race please email investor@fairfax.com.au.


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