Outlook: Aus shares set for slightly higher open

Market Reports

by David Chau

Wall Street spent much of yesterday in the red, but it still managed to finish the day slightly higher. Shares in Consumer Staples led the way, while Telcos stocks experienced the biggest sector decline. Analysts say that the cautious tone is due to the market waiting on the outcome of today’s OPEC meeting to decide whether the world’s major oil producers will cap production, as well as the latest figures on the US labor market out on Friday.

Following this slightly positive lead, the Australian market looks set to open a little higher today.

Markets

Wall Street closed up: The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.01 per cent to close at 17,790, the S&P 500 gained 0.1 per cent to close at 2,099 and the NASDAQ was up 0.1 per cent to close at 4,952.

European markets closed lower: London’s FTSE lost 0.6 per cent, Paris lost 0.7 per cent and Frankfurt was down 0.6 per cent.

Asian markets closed lower: The Nikkei lost 1.6 per cent, the Hang Seng lost 0.3 per cent, and the Shanghai Composite lost 0.1 per cent.

The Australian share market closed lower yesterday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 55 points down to finish at 5,323. On the futures market the SPI is up 3 points.

Currencies

The Australian Dollar at 7:30AM was buying $US0.7255 cents, 50.34 Pence Sterling, 79.46 Yen and 64.87 Euro cents.

Company news

ASG Group Limited (ASX:ASZ) has announced that its FY2016 results will be at the higher end of guidance. The IT company says that its revenue will be in the range of $185 to $195 million and EBITDA margin will be 14%.

Shares in ASG traded 3.86% higher yesterday at $1.08.

Lithium Australia Limited (ASX:LIT) has been granted approval by the Western Australian government to conduct initial preparatory site works at its Ravensthorpe project. The company was also granted permits for major bulk sampling of the lithium tenement.

Shares in Lithium traded 9.62% lower at $0.235 yesterday.

Ex-dividends

2 companies are going ex-dividend today. Kathmandu Holdings will pay a dividend of 2.67 cents unfranked. Ruralco Holdings will pay a dividend of 8 cents fully franked.

Commodities

Gold has lost $2.80 to $US1,215 an ounce for the August contract on Comex. Silver has lost $0.07 to $15.93 for July. Copper lost $0.02 to $2.07 a pound. Oil has lost $0.09 to $US49.01 a barrel for July light crude in New York.