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The Australian sharemarket is coming under pressure for the first time this week, with the ASX 200 declining by 0.62 per cent to 6,874.3 on one of the busiest days of the year for half year results. Declines from supermarket chains, gold miners, travel stocks, tech and healthcare are weighing most heavily. Strong gains from BHP and Westpac (WBC) are helping to limit the declines.

Around 20 companies released their results today, with a relatively even split between those improving and dropping back. Domino’s (DMP) is up 6.8 per cent, recovering from a sluggish start. Sales grew by 21 per cent to $1.1bn and profits jumped by 38 per cent thanks to plenty of demand for pizza delivery during the pandemic. The result allowed DMP to declare a record dividend.

Super Retail Group (SUL) recorded a 23 per cent lift in sales to $1.78bn thanks to high demand for its products during the pandemic. Sales rose most at its BCF stores, lifting by 51 per cent, followed by Supercheap Auto and Rebel. Online sales rose by 87 per cent to $237.4m.

Aussie Broadband (ABB) is up 7.3 per cent following an 89 per cent jump in revenue to $157.4m and 87 per cent surge in EBITDA to $7.3m. The number of broadband connections (residential and business) rose 31 per cent over the half. ABB made its ASX debut in October last year and has surged by 38 per cent Year-to-Date.

Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) announced plans to operate under three new divisions – Penfolds, Treasury Premium Brands and Treasury Americas. Net profit slumped by 24 per cent to $175.3m partly due to pandemic related disruptions to sales channels and reduced shipments in China.

Webjet (WEB) is up 2.5 per cent despite posting a 90 per cent slump in revenue to $22.6m for the half. Cost savings have reduced cash burn to $4.8m per month and has ~$280m of cash on hand. The opening of state borders helped to create some business while its internationally focused operations posted heavy losses.

Whitehaven (WHC) is down 5 per cent after reporting a $94.4m half year loss due mainly to much weaker coal prices (average achieved coal price fell by ~25 per cent over the half), which have been impacted by a trade dispute with China and the pandemic.

Coles (COL) is down 5.3 per cent despite posting a 14.5 per cent gain in HY profit to $560m and declared a larger dividend, up 10 per cent to 33c. The supermarket chain warned of potentially lower profits in the second half and in 2022 due to COVID uncertainties.

Westpac (WBC) is lifting by 4.4 per cent and is one of the biggest contributors to the market at lunch after releasing its quarterly update. Cash profit rose by $1.97bn, mainly due to improved bad debt charges. Its Net Interest Margin rose by 3bps to 2.06 per cent. NAB posted a $1.65bn cash profit yesterday.

6.8bn shares have changed hands so far, worth $5.5bn. 507 stocks are up, 841 down and 345 are flat.

Published by CommSec