A third session in the red today for the local share market, closing the day 0.11 per cent lower. This time it was the big four banks that were the biggest drag, with a Westpac capital raising prompting a sell-off in the space. Another dismal day for the energy sector too, with Santos and Origin energy leading the losses.
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 6 points lower to finish at 5,197.
The value of trades was $4.6 billion on volume of 743 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA)
, ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ)
and BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP)
On the futures market the SPI is down 20 points.
Consumer confidence has risen for October, according to the latest data from the Westpac/Melbourne Institute. Sentiment rose by 4.2 per cent to 97.8, but remains below 100, indicating there are more pessimists than optimists. Some economists are attributing the rise partially to the appointment of Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister.
Fonterra Co-operative Group (ASX:FSF)
has been notified by Standard and Poors Ratings Services that its credit rating has been downgraded to A minus from A. It has also lowered Fonterra’s subordinated notes to BBB+ from A-, but says the outlook remains stable. Shares in Fonterra closed 3.26 per cent higher at $5.07.
Austal Limited (ASX:ASB)
has executed a conditional, three year financing agreement with a syndicate of four banks. The ship builder says the financing agreement involves two US banks and two Australian banks with significant US defence contracting experience. Shares in Austal closed down 1.42 per cent at $2.08.
Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC)
has announced a $3.5 billion share entitlement offer.
National Storage REIT (ASX:NSR)
has announced plans to expand its Sydney presence via a $10.7 million acquisition.
Treasury Wine Estates (ASX:TWE)
is set to acquire the majority of Diageo’s wine business.
Lynas Corporation Limited (ASX:LYC)
has reported positive free cash flow for the third straight quarter, despite low market prices.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Healthcare adding 0.8 per cent to close at 17,883. The worst performing sector was Energy, losing 3.3 per cent to close at 8,700 points.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Domino’s, rising 6.91 per cent to close at $42.52. Shares in Northern Star and Arrium also closed higher.
The worst performing stock was Origin Energy, dropping 7.42 per cent to close at $5.49. Shares in Santos and Liquefied Natural Gas also closed lower.
Baby Bunting Group Limited (ASX:BBN)
started trading today. The baby goods retailer floated with an issue price of $1.40, opened at $1.96 and closed at $1.83.
Gold is trading at $US1,174 an ounce.
Light crude is 46 cents lower at $US47.15 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying 72.19 US cents.