ANZ has achieved a 6% increase in full-year cash profit to take its profit to a record $6.01 billion.
The results were in line or slightly ahead of market expectations, including a 4% increase in final dividend to 79 cents a share.
This takes ANZ’s full-year payout to $1.45 a share, also up 4%.
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ANZ chief executive Mike Smith told analysts the group has delivered an improved performance in its Australia division, particularly in the second half.
“Profit grew 4%, underpinned by a strong focus on productivity, market share gains in retail, growth in commercial customer numbers and tighter management of margins,” he said.
Commissioner of Taxation to step down
The Commissioner of Taxation, Michael D’Ascenzo, is stepping down from his role at the Australian Taxation Office at the end of 2012 after seven years in the position.
D’Ascenzo will take up a new role on the Foreign Investment Review Board.
Institute of Chartered Accountants Australia’s chief executive Lee White said that after decades of service in senior roles at the ATO, D’Ascenzo has undoubtedly played an instrumental role in the development and administration of Australia’s tax system.
“During his term over the last seven years as Commissioner, as well as in earlier positions, Mr D’Ascenzo has contributed to a number of reforms which have helped position Australia’s tax system and its administration as world-class,” he said.
Australian stock market flat
The Australian stock market was sluggish in morning trade after Wall Street finished slightly in the red overnight but European stocks closed higher.
At the official market open, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index inched up 0.05% to 4508.0 points.
The broader All Ordinaries Index edged up 0.06% to 4533.4 points.
Miguel Audencial, sales trader at CMC Markets, said the flat start to the Australian equities session today followed Wall Street’s finish lower in last night’s session.
“A negative statement about the US employment sector from the Fed reminded investors to be more cautious,” he said.
“The Australian energy sector will face selling pressure today with the price of crude oil lower after inventories increased more than expected. “