BHP Billiton reports FY14 underlying profit $13.45B vs. $12.21B last year BHP said capital and exploration expenditure is expected to decline to $14.5Bin the 2015 financial year and be no more than $14B should the proposed demerger be implemented. "By maintaining an internal focus and concentrating investment in our major basins we believe an average rate of return of greater than 20% is achievable for our favoured development options," the company said. It added, "With robust volume growth and further productivity gains expected, we remain confident in the outlook for the Group. On this basis, we increased our full-year progressive base dividend by 4% to 121 US cents per share for an Underlying payout ratio of 48%. We will seek to steadily increase or at least maintain the dividend per share in US dollar terms at each half-yearly payment following the demerger, implying a higher payout ratio."
On The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary Today's noteworthy downgrades include: AGCO (AGCO) downgraded to Underweight from Neutral at JPMorgan... Alcatel-Lucent (ALU) downgraded to Buy from Conviction Buy at Goldman... Anglo American (AAUKY) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman... BAE Systems (BAESY) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at UBS... BHP Billiton (BHP) downgraded to Neutral from Conviction Buy at Goldman... Black Diamond (BDE) downgraded on valuation at Stifel... Boston Private Financial (BPFH) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Sandler O'Neill... Columbus McKinnon (CMCO) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at CL King... CoreSite Realty (COR) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Evercore ISI... Meggitt (MEGGF) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at UBS... Methanex (MEOH) downgraded to Sector Perform from Outperform at Scotia Capital... Nokia (NOK) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Citigroup... SanDisk (SNDK) downgraded to Sell from Neutral at BTIG... Thomson Reuters (TRI) downgraded to Sector Perform from Outperform at RBC Capital... Turquoise Hill (TRQ) downgraded to Hold from Speculative Buy at TD Securities... Washington Federal (WAFD) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at DA Davidson.