ASX 200 goes higher, Afterpay sinks, Adbri impresses

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX:XJO) went up by 0.9%. However, the Afterpay Ltd (ASX:APT) share price sank whilst Adbri Ltd (ASX:ABC) impressed.

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A happy construction worker leap-frogs over another as a third looks on

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The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) rose by around 0.9% today to 6,839 points.

Here are some of the highlights from the ASX:

Adbri Ltd (ASX: ABC)

The Adbri share price was the best performer in the ASX 200, rising by 10.5%.

Construction business Adbri announced its FY20 report, showing that revenue dropped by 4% over the year to $1.45 billion. It blamed lower residential activity which affected its concrete and cement volumes. This offset improved sales of lime and concrete products.

Underlying net profit after tax (NPAT) fell by 6% to $115.6 million, but this was actually better than the guidance that it had previously given before it was withdrawn due to COVID-19.

It generated $93.7 million of statutory profit, with cashflow from operations growing by 32.6% to $256.2 million.

The Adbri board announced a final dividend of 7.25 cents per share, which brought the total FY20 dividend to 12 cents per share.

In terms of the outlook, Adbri said that trading conditions are expected to remain challenging until the stimulus measures completely offset underlying softness in east coast construction markets. However, some areas of the business will be supported by a growing number of mining projects.

SEEK Limited (ASX: SEK)

The SEEK share price fell over 7% in reaction to its updates today. It was one of the worst performers in the ASX 200.

It said that Andrew Basset will step down as managing director and CEO, to transition to the new full-time role of executive chair and CEO of SEEK Investments. Ex-Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA) Ian Narev will become the boss.

The SEEK board believes the SEEK Asia Pacific and Americas and SEEK Investments businesses can benefit from a greater degree of independence and focus, and is in a unique position to have two experienced executives lead its operating business and its investment arm.

SEEK wants the Investments business to be an investor and business builder that partners with emerging leaders to support their aspirations and deliver strong long-term returns. Keys to its success will include the ability to operate independently and access third party capital.

For SEEK, the focus is on the growth opportunities for the Asia Pacific and Americas business and relevant adjacencies, whilst retaining economic exposure to Investments and Zhaopin.

However, the company did say that Zhaopin and itself are in advanced discussions with a consortium looking to acquire an ownership interest in Zhaopin.

In terms of the FY21 half-year result, the ASX 200 share reported that group revenue was down 6% to $819.1 million. SEEK ANZ revenue was down 1%, Zhaopin revenue was down 8% and SEEK Asia revenue was down 23%.

Looking at group earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), it dropped by 1% to $245.9 million. The EBITDA margin improved from 28% last year to 30%.

SEEK’s reported net profit dropped 8% to $69.7 million. It spent 8% more on depreciation and amortisation because of product and technology investment.

There was no FY21 half-year dividend declared, though the board intends to restart dividends at the full year result.

Regarding the full year forecast, it’s expecting revenue to be around $1.7 billion, EBITDA to be approximately $460 million and reported net profit to be around $100 million.

Other hefty ASX 200 movements

A number of ASX tech shares and growth shares were sold off today. The Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT) share price dropped 7.2% and the Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Ltd. (ASX: DMP) share price dropped 8.5%.

Two businesses fell more than 10%. They were: the Perenti Global Ltd (ASX: PRN) share price after reporting its result and the Austal Limited (ASX: ASB) share price after losing its US boss.

At the green end of the ASX 200, the AUB Group Ltd (ASX: AUB) share price rose by 10% after reporting its result.

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Tristan Harrison has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Austal Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of AFTERPAY T FPO. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Dominos Pizza Enterprises Limited and SEEK Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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