The Australian share market rises for its second day in a row, climbing to its highest level since late February 2020, ahead of Commonwealth Bank, AMP and Telstra’s results announcements this week.

The Australian share market has risen for its second day in a row, climbing to its highest level since February 25 last year.
Some of the nation’s biggest companies will announce their results this week, and investors will get a chance to scrutinise the impact COVID-19 has had on their profits.
Commonwealth Bank and Insurance Australia Group are among the big names who will report their earnings (on Wednesday), followed by AMP, Telstra, AGL Energy and Transurban (on Thursday).
The ASX 200 closed 40 points (or 0.6 per cent) higher at 6,881. The benchmark index climbed as high as 6,901 points in early afternoon trade, before it pulled back slightly.
The broader All Ordinaries index lifted 48 points (0.7 per cent) to finish at 7,161 points.
Some of the best performing stocks on Monday were miners like Lynas Rare Earths (+7.1pc), Mineral Resources (+5.6pc) and Iluka Resources (+4.9pc), along with BlueScope Steel (+3.9pc) and Super Retail Group (+4pc).
Shares in Zip Co surged (+12.9pc) to $9.80, on reports that management was looking to tap US investors over the next few days.
On the flip side, News Corp (-3pc), Unibail Rodamco Westfield (-3.2pc), Origin Energy (-3.5pc), Nearmap (-2.9pc) and litigation funder Omni Bridgeway (-3.2pc) suffered heavy losses.
Cannabis firm targeted by hackers
Medical cannabis company Cann Group may have lost $3.6 million as a result of a cyber attack.
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The company said that it recently transferred that amount of money to an overseas contractor, in relation to work performed on its Mildura production site.
Instead, it was received by an “unknown third party” as a result of a “complex and sophisticated cyber fraud”.
The company said that it discovered the problem on February 4 and it was working with its bank to see if any of that money could be “halted” or recovered.
It also reported the matter to police in Victoria, the Netherlands and Hong Kong, along with Australia’s Office of Drug Control.
In a statement, Cann tried to reassure shareholders by saying it was “in a financial position to continue with its ongoing operations and projects” even if it was unable to recover the money.
At first, investors hit the sell button, driving Cann’s shares down as much as 4.8 per cent. But the cannabis stock eventually recovered from its losses, to end its day flat at 66 cents.
Vocus receives $3.4b offer
In other news, shares in Sydney-based telco Vocus Group jumped (+12.8pc) to $4.94 after it received a non-binding takeover offer from Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Asset (MIRA), valued at $3.4 billion.
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MIRA pitched its offer at $5.50 per share, which was a significant premium (+25.6pc) over Vocus’s closing share price on Friday ($4.38).
Sydney-based Vocus said it would open its books to MIRA for due diligence and pave the way for a binding proposal.
“The Board has concluded that it is in the best interests of Vocus shareholders to explore the potential for a transaction with MIRA,” the company said in a statement to the ASX.
Vocus owns internet brands like iPrimus and Dodo, fibre networks across Australia and New Zealand, along with a 4,600-kilometre underwater cable which connects Singapore with Perth.
In recent years, Vocus has had trouble attracting takeover bids which end with a successful deal.
AGL and Swedish private equity firm EQT Infrastructure abandoned their takeover bids in June 2019 after conducting due diligence on the local telco.
Private equity firms KKR and Affinity Equity Partners were also interested in buying Vocus back in 2017. They also scrapped their offers after looking into the company’s books.
“We believe a situation like that happening again would be perceived very negatively, with investors likely questioning what within the company is driving interest away,” JPMorgan analysts said.
“While on the one hand, the actions by MIRA may elicit competing bids given the interest shown in Vocus in the past, there is clearly no guarantee that the process will lead to a full transaction.”
Aussie dollar rebounds on weak US job figures
The Australian dollar was buying 76.76 US cents by 4:25pm AEDT  having jumped by more than 1 per cent over the weekend.
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It was mainly due to a weaker greenback, after the United States released some weaker-than-expected job figures on Friday.
The number of non-farm payrolls increased by 49,900 last month, according to the US Labor Department’s latest data.
Not only that, December’s job figures were even worse than initially thought.
The US previously reported that 140,000 people lost their jobs in December. But now that figure has been revised sharply higher (to 227,000).
US President Joe Biden has argued that the bleak job figures highlight the urgent need for Congress to approve his proposed $US1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package.
The prospect of more stimulus being pumped into the economy boosted Wall Street to record highs.
The Dow Jones lifted (+0.3pc) to 31,148, while the S&P 500 went up (+0.4pc) to 3,887.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq index rose (+0.6pc) to 13,856 on Friday.
All three US indices posted their best week since November. Last week, the Dow, S&P and Nasdaq jumped by 3.9, 4.7 and 6 per cent respectively.