Macquarie cuts its profit forecast for commodities business

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That’s even as the Sydney-based investment bank cut its forecast for the commodities and financial-markets business for the full year ending March 31. Full-year profit from the unit is expected to be lower than the previous year with trading in the fourth quarter seen falling, Macquarie said Thursday in a regulatory filing. The firm is expected to post a record A$2.07 billion ($1.5 billion) net profit for the year, according to the mean estimate of 10 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Falling commodity prices threaten to take the steam out of Macquarie’s profit juggernaut. A declining Australian dollar is expected to provide some cushion to the bank, which got 71 percent of its first-half income from overseas.

“Weak commodity prices could start to hurt Macquarie,” T.S. Lim, a Sydney-based analyst at Bell Potter Securities Ltd., said in a telephone interview before the announcement. “A few months back, everything was spot on for Macquarie. Now, amid the commodity drop and broader global economic weakness taking a toll on investor confidence, the bank may face some challenges.”