In the red: Aus shares close 0.21% lower

Market Reports

by Carolyn Herbert

It has been a disappointing start to the week for the Australian share market following on from weak leads from Wall Street. At the end of the day the local bourse ran out of puff and ended up closing underwater or 0.21 per cent lower. The materials space was to blame for a bulk of the losses, with big miners BHP and Rio Tinto being sold of heavily along with the gold miners. The shining light in the end was the staples space with gains in Bluescope Steel and Covermore.

The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 12 points down to finish at 5,515.

The value of trades was $4.4 billion on volume of 682 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), Telstra Corporation Limited (ASX:TLS).

On the futures market the SPI is 12 points down.

Company news

Charter Hall Group (ASX:CHC) has almost doubled its statutory profit after tax for FY16, reporting $215.2 million for the year, up $97.3 million on last year’s figure. Distribution per security of 26.9 cents was up 11.2 per cent on the previous corresponding period. Shares in Charter Hall closed 0.36 per cent up at $5.51.

BlueScope Steel Limited (ASX:BLS) has delivered underlying net profit of $293 million, a 119 per cent improvement on last year.

Northern Star Resources Limited (ASX:NST) has announced a 65 per cent rise in net profit to $151 million.

Watpac Limited (ASX:WTP) says it will enter an arrangement as a preferred builder with Australian Unity to deliver the Herston Quarter project in Brisbane.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Staples adding 0.8 per cent to close at 9,065. The worst performing sector was Energy, losing 1.1 per cent to close at 8,734 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was GWA Group, rising 18.06 per cent to close at $2.68. Shares in Bluescope Steel and Covermore Group also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was APN Outdoor, dropping 35.32 per cent to close at $5.33. Shares in Japara Health and Independence Group also closed lower.


AdAlta Limited (ASX:1AD) started trading today. The drug discovery and development company listed with an issue price of $0.25, opened at $0.305 and a closed at $0.28.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,334 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.26 up at $US49.11 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7596.


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