DATA JUST RELEASED SHOWS RETAIL SALES FELL POINT-ONE PER CENT IN NOVEMBER... AGAINST EXPECTATIONS OF A RISE

THE SHAREMARKET REMAINS HIGHER THOUGH

THE ASX 200 ADDING A QUARTER OF A PER CENT

OVERNIGHT INVESTORS ON WALL STREET CONTINUED TO SELL DOWN STOCKSAS THE COMPANY EARNINGS SEASON STARTED.

THE DOW GAVE UP POINT-FOUR PER CENT

EUROPEAN MARKETS WENT INTO DECLINE AFTER DATA REVEALED UNEMPLOYEMNT IN THE EU HIT A RECORD HIGH

COMMODITIES TRADE IS LACKLUSTRE.

THE AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR IS HIGHER AGAINST THE GREENBACK WORTH AROUND 105 US CENTS.

#READ ON#

ONE OF THE WORLD'S BIGGEST ALUMINIUM PRODUCERS... ALCOA... HAS KICKED OFF U-S EARNINGS SEASON BY HITTING ITS PROFIT TARGET.

##TAKE RVO###

ALCOA... WHICH HAS PRODUCTION IN AUSTRALIA... MADE 230 MILLION DOLLARS IN THE FOURTH QUARTER BY COST CUTTING TO HELP OFFSET A DROP IN ALUMINIUM PRICES.

THAT COMPARES TO A LOSS OF 182 MILLION DOLLARS IN THE SAME PERIOD A YEAR EARLIER.

IN JUNE LAST YEAR THE FEDERAL AND VICTORIAN GOVERNMENTS GRANTED ALCOA A BAILOUT PACKAGE TO KEEP THE GEELONG SMELTER OPEN UNTIL MID NEXT YEAR.

***READ ON***

A REPROT CLAIMS SYDNEY AIRPORT WILL REACH CAPACITY 20 YEARS BEFORE THE AIRPORT'S MANAGEMENT IS FORECASTING.

##TAKE RVO###

COMMONWEALTH BANK INFRASTRUCTURE ANALYSTS BELIEVE THE AIRPORT WILL REACH CAPACITY SHORTLY AFTER 2025.

THE REPORT RECOMMENDS SYDNEY GET A NEW RUNWAY, TERMINAL OR SECOND SITE.