In spite of a brief mid-week surge, the benchmark ASX 200 index finished the week down 0.06% at 5,881 points after losing ground on Friday.
It was another busy period for company results with just one week left of the February reporting season.
Earnings on the rise
As the penultimate week of reporting season drew to a close, CommSec released an assessment of 72 companies from the ASX 200 which have so far reported results for the six months to 31 December.
The analysis showed that after removing the impact of significant outliers, to-date aggregate earnings per share has risen 7.1%. Some of this at least was driven by revenue growth, although CommSec chief economist Craig James said this time cost lines have also been on the rise.
“Companies are still generally making money, but are not slashing costs to achieve that end. In other words, earnings are being underpinned by slightly higher revenues although outpaced in many cases by higher expenses,” James said.