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ASX 200 lunch update: NAB & Xero higher, Flight Centre sinks

At lunch on Thursday the S&P/ASX 200 index is on course to bounce back from yesterday’s decline. At the time of writing the benchmark index is up 0.7% to 6,705.5 points.

Here’s what has been happening on the market today:

NAB results.

The National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB) share price is up almost 3% at lunch following the release of its full year results. NAB posted a 10.6% decline in FY 2019 cash earnings to $5.1 billion and a 16% reduction in its final dividend to 83 cents a share. Much to the relief of shareholders, no capital raising was announced and the bank fully franked its dividend.

Xero impresses.

The Xero Limited (ASX: XRO) share price has stormed to a record high on Thursday after delivering a strong half year result. For the six months ended September 30, Xero reported a 32% increase in operating revenue to NZ$338.7 million. The business and accounting software company also announced that it has now surpassed 2 million subscribers.

Flight Centre disappoints.

The Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd (ASX: FLT) share price is trading notably lower today after disappointing with its FY 2020 guidance. The travel agent giant warned that first half profit before tax would be down 22% to 36% on the $140.4 million achieved a year earlier. For the full year, it expects underlying profit before tax of $310 million to $350 million. The mid-point of this range represents a 3.8% decrease on FY 2019’s $343.1 million.

Best and worst performers.

The best performer on the ASX 200 at lunch is the James Hardie Industries plc (ASX: JHX) share price with a gain of 6.5%. The building products company’s shares are racing higher after a solid half year result. It posted adjusted net operating profit of US$188.8 million, which is 17% higher than the same period last year. Going the other way, the Perenti Global Ltd (ASX: PRN) (Ausdrill) share price is the worst performer with a 10.5% decline following a security incident.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Flight Centre Travel Group Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of National Australia Bank Limited and Xero. 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 Scott Phillips.

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