Lacking direction: Aus shares flat at noon

Market Reports

by Carolyn Herbert

Despite strong leads from Wall Street, the Australian share market is struggling for direction this session and is currently flat or 0.03 per cent lower at noon. After a bounce in the price of commodities overnight we have seen the Energy space emerge as one of the best performers so far with Santos gaining 3 per cent and Beach Energy gaining close to 4 per cent. Not a good day for consumer discretionaries with Domino’s Pizza shedding 4 per cent despite another record year for the company.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is down 2 points at 5,539. On the futures market the SPI is 2 points lower.

Company news

G8 Education Limited (ASX:GEM) has reported a 12 per cent decrease in HY net profit to $24.9 million. However total revenue came in at $361.2 million which was up 16 per cent on the previous corresponding period. The company says its profit margins were impacted by increased staff wages and legislation related cost impacts in WA. Shares in G8 Education are trading down 17.89 per cent at $3.03.

Asciano Limited (ASX:AIO) has reported a 1.4 per cent decrease in net profit to $408.8 million. The rail and ports operator also announced revenue was down 5.4 per cent on the previous corresponding period to $3.63 billion. The company has not declared a final dividend. Shares in Asciano have been suspended since the end of July as a result of takeover proceedings.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is Energy, gaining 1.5 per cent to 8,704. Shares in Whitehaven Coal have risen 4.26 per cent and trading at $1.96. Shares in Beach Energy and Worley Parsons are also stronger.

The worst performing sector is Discretionaries, falling 1 per cent to 2,234. Shares in G8 Education have fallen 17.89 per cent, trading at $3.03. Shares in Domino’s Pizza and Mantra Group are also lower.

Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,344 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7669.


Carolyn Herbert

Finance News Network
Carolyn joined FNN in August 2015 as the Head of News and also presented the Market at Midday and the Market Wrap. With more than five years of broadcast journalism experience, Carolyn has worked as a finance anchor on the Sky News Business channel and as an anchor and reporter for ABC News. She is also a qualified corporate lawyer specialising in IPOs, takeovers and mergers and acquisitions.