WA’s top 50 worth $49 billion

IT has been another positive return from the Deloitte WA Index.

The index has grown at more than three times the rate of the Australian Stock Exchange All Ordinaries for the past six months, with the market capitalisation of WA companies included in the index rising by 1.95 per cent during the month of February.

The combined market caps of the top 50 companies now totals $49 billion.

However, the ASX All Ordinaries outperformed the WA index for the first time in 12 months, largely driven by strong half year results from the banking, mining and media sectors.

The good news is, any negative developments affecting one of the top 50 aside, the outlook looks bright for them to add more value.

Economic conditions are usually the other main thing that can affect things and, Deloitte partner Peter McIver said the outlook on that front was positive.

"There seems to be a bit more stability with interest rates and the like and the Australian dollar is holding where it is," he said.

Commodity prices have driven a lot of the growth for companies within the top 50 and there seems little to suggest that there will be a change with the good news stories of big deals continuing to roll out of China.

"The increase in market capitalisation continued to be substantially driven by the share price performance of WA’s mining and resource companies that have achieved growth of 84 per cent in the 12 months to February.

"However, while a lot of the companies that have climbed in the past 12 months have been driven by resource prices a lot have also made investments over the past few years and those are coming to fruition.

"Kimberley [Diamond Company] and Jubilee [Mines] have had substantial gains over the past few months and that’s off producing assets.

The top 10 companies in the list have remained virtually the same from last month, except for Burswood and Sons of Gwalia rising and falling respectively.

Burswood climbed from 11th place to claim tenth while Sons of Gwalia, previously ranked 10th fell to 12th.

The top 10 is now Wesfarmers, Woodside, Foodland Associated Limited, West Australian Newspaper Holdings, LionOre Mining International, Alinta, Iluka Resources, Durban Roodepoort Deep, Aquarius Platinum and Burswood.

Mr McIver said out of the resources sector one of the biggest movers in percentage terms was Great Southern Plantations Limited which more than doubled its market capitalisation from $132 million to $497 million.

It now ranks 14th.

"At the top end of the index Woodside Petroleum reached over the $10 billion mark in market capitalisation, increasing by more than $420 million in February," he said.

The index covers the month of February, which coincides with the majority of ASX reporting deadlines.

Some of the companies in the top 50 have also taken a step back.

One Mr McIver pointed to was Chemeq, although he put that company’s drop from 14 to 15 down to the fact that it is building a major plant.

Alinta also remained unchanged in its position at six.

However, that has been put down to the company’s investment in the assets of Duke Energy not being filtered through in this survey.

Mr McIver said he expected to see the results of that investment reflected in the next survey which is due out in mid April.

He said Alinta’s result in that survey should be positive.





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