THE WEEK AHEAD

The coming week yields a bumper crop of earnings results, including Telstra, CBA, Qantas and Transurban. And on the local data front, labour force, lending finance and job ad figures are due.

The week ahead will revolve around an array of company results, with reporting season well and truly underway. Reports will include the Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s full year results, a third quarter trading update from NAB, as well as full year results for Telstra, Qantas and Transurban. There will also be no lack of compelling economic data, with ABS labour force and lending finance figures scheduled as well as ANZ job advertisements. Offshore, Germany will reveal its trade balance for June, while the US awaits consumer prices for June and retail sales figures for July.

Local data

On Monday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics will release housing finance data for June. Economists expect that the value of loans may have lifted by two per cent, boosted by investors.

National Australia Bank will release its measure of business conditions and business confidence for July. Economists say that business confidence at the moment is at 12-month lows.

Then, ANZ will release job advertisement figures for July. Job advertisements are up 32 per cent on a year ago.

On Wednesday, there will be more feedback on local consumer sentiment, with the Westpac consumer confidence measure for August due out.

The ABS will release its lending finance figures for June, this data includes the value of monthly commitments for secured housing finance, other personal finance, and commercial and lease finance.

On Thursday, the ABS will reveal labour force figures for July, with economists tipping a 25,000 lift in jobs, and the jobless rate unchanged at 5.1 per cent.

Also on Thursday, June manufacturing production figures will be released by the ABS.

Corporate

Analysts are tipping that the coming days will show just how solidly companies from a range of sectors are consolidating their recoveries in the wake of the global financial crisis, with strong improvements expected.

Monday gets underway with Bendigo and Adelaide Bank’s full year results. Analysts expect the company to record net profit after tax (NPAT) of $308.8 million, up 69.5 per cent on the previous corresponding period’s $182.2 million.

Then JB Hi-Fi’s full year results are expected to show a 27.3 per cent improvement in NPAT to $120.2 million, up from $94.4 million.

On Tuesday, National Australia Bank will release its third quarter trading update. Cochlear will release its full year results, and analysts see an 18.3 per cent improvement to $154.4 million, up from $130.5 million. Bradken is seen adding 3.8 per cent to last year’s NPAT, up to $66.7 million from $64.3 million.

Alumina will also reveal its interim results on Tuesday, expected to post $US46.1 million NPAT, up from a $US19.2 million loss in the first half of 2009 and Oakton full year NPAT should add 38.5 per cent to $19.8 million, up from $14.3 million.

On Wednesday CBA’s full year NPAT is seen improving 35.4 per cent to $5.97 billion, up from $4.41 billion in 2009. Following CBA is Stockland’s full year results, and analysts expect a 9.9 per cent improvement in NPAT to $693.6 million, up from $631.4 million. Meanwhile, Computershare full year results are seen headed for NPAT of $US327.4 million, up 13.1 per cent from $US289.5 million last year.

On Thursday, Telstra heads proceedings, with an expected decrease in full year NPAT of 4.4 per cent to $3.89 billion, down from $4.07 billion in 2009. Qantas’ full year result should show a huge improvement as the aviation market picks up, recording $251.2 million NPAT, up from $117 million in the prior year. Transurban is seen booking full year NPAT of $279.3 million, up 5.6 per cent from $264.5 million.

Also on Thursday, Coca-Cola Amatil will reveal first half results which analysts expect to have increased 10.5 per cent to NPAT of $209.7 million, up from $189.8 million. Bunnings Warehouse Property Trust will report its full year results, with an expected 26.2 per cent improvement in NPAT to $51.1 million, up from $40.5 million. And Austereo Group’s full year report should show a 4.2 per cent improvement in NPAT to $47.1 million, an improvement on $45.2 million in 2009.

And capping off a busy day, James Hardie Industries SE will stage its annual general meeting.

International

Offshore activity gets underway on Monday when Germany reveals its trade balance for June.

On Tuesday in the United States, the Federal Reserve will make its monthly decision on interest rates, which are on hold at 0.25 per cent until the nation’s tenuous grip on economic recovery shows some more solid signs of strength.

Overseas on Wednesday, Canada will release its international merchandise trade figures for June.

On Thursday, Japan will release its industrial production figures for June.

Then Friday heats up in the US, beginning with consumer prices for June, with economists tipping that core prices (excluding food and energy) may have crept up 0.1 per cent.

This will be followed by US retail sales figures for July, which economists see increasing by about 0.4 per cent, while US consumer sentiment for August is also scheduled, and is seen as unlikely to improve greatly until the job market improves.

Rounding off

On Wednesday speaking for the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) will be commissioner of the Productivity Commission, Robert Fitzgerald. His talk will focus on "valuing and strengthening the contribution of the not for profit sector”.

On Thursday for the Trans Tasman Business Circle, Westpac Banking Corporation’s group executive of technology, Bob McKinnon will give a talk in Sydney.

Also on Thursday, the American Chamber of Commerce in Australia (AMCHAM) will host a range of speakers who will explore opportunities for Islamic Finance in Australia. There will be addresses from trade and investment director of the United Arab Emirates, James Wyndham, the global head of Islamic finance for Norton Rose Group Neil D Miller, as well as director for ING Bank John Masters.

On Friday for AMCHAM, Metcash chief executive Andrew Reitzer will give an address in Sydney, while Mitchell Communications Group executive chairman Harold Mitchell will speak at an AMCHAM business briefing in Melbourne.

Mitchell recently made headlines as the head of Australia’s biggest media buying company signed an agreement to sell the business to UK advertising giant Aegis, for $363 million.

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