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Billabong surfing its way back; NAB lifts Q1 profit: Midday Roundup

Billabong has reported a net loss of $126.29 million for the six months to December 31, much less than its $536.64 million loss in the previous corresponding period.

The surfwear company’s revenue for the six month period was $669.99 million, down 4.6% on the $702.32 million for the same time last year.

After years of challenges the group received financial backing from the Centerbridge Oaktree Consortium in the US. It reported that the smaller loss showed signs its turnaround strategy was working.

Billabong chief executive officer Neil Fiske said the business was in the midst of a seven-part restructuring strategy. He said it was a “complex, difficult turnaround” and people will need to be patient to see results on the bottom line.

NAB lifts Q1 profit

National Australia Bank’s first quarter cash earnings are up 7% to $1.55 billion on the previous corresponding period.

On a cash earnings basis, the bank’s revenue increased by approximately 1%, as higher lending balances were partially offset by a lower customer margin.

The bank’s charge for bad and doubtful debts fell by 23% for the period to $324 million.

“The Group achieve a solid first quarter result, with a continuation of the trends evident in the 2H13 result, including further improvement in asset quality and good growth in mortgages,” NAB Group chief executive Cameron Clyne said in a statement.

“Particularly pleasing was the further improvement in the performance of UK Banking and NAB UK Commercial Real Estate run-off portfolio. Both continue to benefit from the restructure we undertook in 2012 and the recovery of the UK economy.”

Shares jump on open

Aussie shares have opened higher this morning, following positive US manufacturing data and gains on Wall Street.

The S&P/ASX200 was up 32.9 points to 5445.2 at 12:04pm AEDT. Overnight the Dow Jones closed 92.67 points higher, up 0.58% to 16,133.23.

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Yolanda Redrup

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Yolanda is a SmartCompany reporter who has a knack for covering business misconduct and retail issues. Previously, she was the editor of RMIT's student magazine Catalyst. Follow her on twitter: @YolandaRedrup
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