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ASX Quarterly Update Nine months To 31 March 2002

Date 23/04/2002

Australian Stock Exchange Limited (ASX) today announced an unaudited operating profit after tax of $43.4 million for the nine months to 31 March 2002, compared with $37.5 million recorded for the corresponding nine months to 31 March 2001.

Revenue for the nine months was $147.3 million, compared with $140.6 million for the corresponding nine months to 31 March 2001.

Operating Performance

Daily average equities trades for the period were higher than for the corresponding nine months (55,106 compared with 50,209). Total equities trades during February 2002 reached their highest level since March 2000. The average revenue per trade for the nine-month period increased to $5.37 compared with $5.35 for the corresponding nine months to 31 March 2001.

There were 62 new listings recorded during the period, compared with 138 for the previous corresponding nine months.

Daily average option contracts increased to 55,534 compared with 42,241 for the previous corresponding period, continuing the increases experienced during the first 6 months of this financial year. The average revenue per contract for the nine-month period was $1.60 compared with $1.70 for the previous corresponding nine months.

The number of new warrant series listed during the period was 1,427, a substantial increase on the 883 listed during the previous corresponding nine months. Total warrant series listed at the end of the period were 1,226 compared with 895 as at 31 March 2001.

Strategic Initiatives

During the period, progress has continued with the strategic development of our business. These include the gathering of industry requirements for ASX FundConnect, an infrastructure service targeted at the unlisted managed funds industry. It is expected that a business model and value proposition will be presented to the industry by June 2002 for consideration.

ASX is also pleased with its move into equity futures. We are confident that when the additional initiatives currently being progressed are available to users, ASX will clearly become the market of choice.

During the 3 months to 31 March 2002 ASX Perpetual Registrars Ltd successfully transferred the 160,000 shareholders of Qantas Airways Limited, and won competitive tenders to offer registry and shareholder services to both IOOF and BHP Steel.

Factor Actual 9 months to March 2002 Actual 9 months to March 2001
Operating revenue excluding interest ($m) 147.3 140.6
Operating profit after tax and equity accounted entries ($m) - unaudited 43.4 37.5
Number of new listings 62 138
Number of listed entities 1,496 1,495
Equities trading, clearing and settlement - Trades ('000) 10,470 9,589
Equities trading, clearing and settlement - Average trades per day ('000) 55.1 50.2
Equities trading, clearing and settlement - Average revenue per trade $5.37 $5.35
Options trading, clearing and settlement - Contracts traded ('000) 10,551 8,068
Options trading, clearing and settlement - Average contracts per day ('000) 55.5 42.2
Options trading, clearing and settlement - Average revenue per contract $1.60 $1.70
Warrants - Number of new warrant series 1,427 883
Warrants - Total warrant series 1,226 895

Daily volumes for equities trades, options and futures contracts and warrant trades are available on ASX's website www.asx.com.au (Market Statistics section).

Outlook

ASX's full year results to 30 June 2002 will continue to be driven by the level of market activity, which has grown strongly during the year to date but remains inherently unpredictable. The longer-term growth of ASX is being pursued both through the continual improvement of existing business and through a number of diversification initiatives, designed to:

  • Enhance core business capacity, access and liquidity;
  • Increase the number of markets conducted or supported;
  • Increase the range of marketplace services provided; and
  • Increase our international reach.