Stocks to watch on Wednesday

Stocks to watch on the Australian stock exchange on Wednesday, Feb 18:

AIO - ASCIANO - down 10 cents, or 1.6 per cent, at $6.31

Port and rail operator Asciano says it is getting tougher to meet earnings growth targets because of a weak economy.

AMC - AMCOR - up 34 cents, or 2.6 per cent, at $13.52

Shares in global packaging giant Amcor have climbed almost four per cent after the company unveiled a $US500 million share buyback and lifted its first half profit and dividend.

ANZ - ANZ BANKING GROUP - down 88 cents, or 2.45 per cent, at $34.99

ANZ has started 2015 on a disappointing note, with its first quarter results generating concerns about the outlook for Australia's third largest bank.

CCL - COCA-COLA AMATIL - up 63 cents, or 6.3 per cent, at $10.61

Drinks supplier Coca-Cola Amatil says new products such as Coke Life and a focus on smaller cans will help lift sagging sales in Australia.

CSS - CLEAN SEAS TUNA - down 0.5 cents, or 6.1 per cent, at 7.7 cents

Clean Seas Tuna expects its annual profit to rise as its fish grow faster than expected.

DSH - DICK SMITH - down 15 cents, or 6.7 per cent, at $2.10

Dick Smith shares have taken a nose dive despite the electronics retailer flagging a 10 per cent rise in full year sales.

FMG - FORTESCUE METALS GROUP - down 13 cents, or 4.9 per cent, at $2.55

Fortescue Metals Group has slashed its dividend after suffering an 81 per cent fall in first half profit.

GWA - GWA GROUP - down 38 cents, or 13.1 per cent, at $2.52

Household fixtures and fittings supplier GWA Group's exit from manufacturing has contributed to a $12.8 million half year loss, but earnings from its remaining businesses have improved.

ILU - ILUKA RESOURCES - up 43 cents, or 5.85 per cent, at $7.78

Mineral sands miner Iluka Resources has sunk from an $18.5 million profit to a $62.5 million full year loss but insists the company's financial health is sound.

IVC - INVOCARE - down five cents, or 0.4 per cent, at $13.22

Funeral, cemetery and crematorium operator Invocare is on the hunt for more acquisitions after a 12 per cent rise in annual net profit to $54.5 million.

MGX - MT GIBSON - down 1.5 cents, or 6.25 per cent, at 22.5 cents

Iron ore miner Mt Gibson has plunged to an $870 million first half loss as prices fell and operations were interrupted at its mine.

MND - MONADELPHOUS - down three cents, or 0.3 per cent, at $9.51

Monadelphous says its profit margins are under pressure as market conditions in the mining and minerals industry remain challenging.

MQG - MACQUARIE GROUP - up $2.42, or 3.5 per cent, at $70.90

Wealth manager Macquarie Group has reaffirmed its recently upgraded forecast of growth in annual profit of up to 20 per cent.

NAB - NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK - up six cents, or 0.2 per cent, at $37.56

National Australia Bank is looking to raise $750 million through a capital notes offer to investors.

PBG - PACIFIC BRANDS - up one cent, or 2.2 per cent, at 47 cents

Bonds underwear owner Pacific Brands has warned it will have to increase prices in 2016 because of the falling Aussie dollar.

PFL - PATTIES FOODS - down 1.5 cents, or 1.2 per cent, at $1.25

Raspberries appear to be the common link in a hepatitis A scare in which nine Australians have tested positive, and Patties Foods has extended its national recall to include Nanna's Raspberries 1kg packs.

SEK - SEEK - down $1.63, or 8.7 per cent, at $17.10

SEEK's chief executive Andrew Bassat believes the Australian economy is not as bad as the 6.4 per cent jobless rate suggests.

SHL - SONIC HEALTHCARE - down three cents, or 0.2 per cent, at $18.91

International pathology, imaging and medical centres operator Sonic Healthcare has lifted its interim dividend despite suffering a fall in first half profit.

WBC - WESTPAC BANKING CORP - up two cents, or 0.05 per cent, at $37.67

Westpac has become the third and final bank to reach a deal with New Zealand's Commerce Commission over interest rate swaps to farmers.


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