Market Wrap: Aus shares close 0.6% higher

Market Reports

It’s been a topsy-turvy day for the local share market, but we saw a turnaround in the last couple of hours of trade, resulting in a close in the black with the market adding 0.6 per cent. The materials space did the bulk of the heavy lifting, with gains in the big miners BHP and Rio Tinto as iron ore hit three week highs. We also saw the gold miners advance, on the back of a rise in gold futures.
 
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 30 points higher to finish at 4,976. 
 
The value of trades was $4.5 billion on volume of 759 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA), BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP) and ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ).
 
On the futures market the SPI is 5 points higher.
 
Company news

Ten Network (ASX:TEN) has posted strong advertising revenue growth in the six months to 31 December 2015, according to the latest figures from Free TV Australia. Ten’s revenue reportedly increased by 13 per cent to $359.7 million. For the full calendar year, Ten’s market share of the free-to-air market was 22.6 per cent, up from 20.3 per cent in 2014. Shares in Ten Network closed 4.21 per cent lower at $1.25. 
 
Lovisa Holdings Limited (ASX:LOV) has announced revenue growth of 13.1 percent in its preliminary unaudited 1H FY16 results.
 
Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX:NCM) announced gold production in excess of 620,000 ounces in the December 2015 quarter, a 6 percent increase over the September period.
 
Cardno Limited (ASX:CDD) has announced several changes to the composition of the company’s board of directors, effective immediately.
 
Drillsearch Energy Limited (ASX:DLS) says the December quarter was a momentous period for the company, with the announcement of an all-scrip merger with Beach Energy.

Best and worst performers
 
The best performing sector was Telcos adding 1.2 per cent to close at 2,022. The worst performing sector was Discretionaries, losing 0.2 per cent to close at 1,942 points.
 
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Credit Corp, rising 11.2 per cent to close at $11.02. Shares in Macquarie Atlas Roads and G8 Education also closed higher.
 
The worst performing stock was Slater and Gordon, dropping 14.29 per cent to close at $0.63. Shares in AWE and GUD also closed lower. 
 
Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,121 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.71 higher at $US32.16 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7046.