Last week on the Australian stock market was a story of volatility as a result of ongoing unease between the US and North Korea coupled with some big profit announcements and disappointments.
The S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX: XJO) fell on three out of five days to end the week down 0.68% lower and took some big names with it!
Wagering group Tabcorp Holdings Limited (ASX: TAH) shares dropped 9.5% over the week after the group announced a loss of $20m for the previously financial year, compared to a $130m profit in the year before, and further stories emerged about difficulties the company may have in pulling off its proposed takeover of Tatts Group Limited (ASX: TTS).
Takeover target Vocus Group Ltd (ASX: VOC) saw a strange 8% fall in its share price despite no significant news coming from the company, however investors may be getting nervous leading into the full year results due on August 23.
Housing products maker James Hardie Industries plc (ASX: JHX) shares fell 7% after the company reported that it expected earnings to rise in the current financial year, but not as much as analysts were predicting. As silly as it sounds, that sent the share price significantly lower due to the US$17m difference between guesstimates.
Similarly, shares in SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited-Ord (ASX: SKC) sunk further towards a 1-year low as they dropped another 7% to $3.57 as the group announced a full year result that contained revenue and profit that fell 7.2% and 69.2% respectively.
Now more than ever, with value and consistency so hard to find, investors need to have laser-like focus on companies that have sustainable competitive advantages so they can continue to grow profits.
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Motley Fool contributor Andrew Mudie has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Vocus Communications Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.