Thursday tumble: Aus shares to open lower

Market Reports

by David Chau

This morning, Australian shares are set to open lower following a lead from US markets, which was not very strong.

Wall Street finished mixed overnight as investors digested mixed economic data, and are continuing to bet that the chance of a US interest rate rise this month is low.

US economic news

The Federal Reserve has released its latest report (known as the Beige Book), a survey of business contacts, economists and market experts. The Fed stated that the US economy grew only at a modest pace in July and August. Also, the Fed said, despite a strong labour market, wages and prices have not increased.

Also, monthly job openings increased in July, according to the Department of Labor’s JOLTS report. 5.9 million job openings were added (a rate of 3.9 percent). This is even better than the June result, where job openings were up by 5.6 million.

Markets

Wall Street closed mixed on Wednesday: The Dow Jones lost 0.1 per cent to close at 18,526, the S&P 500 was flat and closed at 2,186 and the NASDAQ rose 0.2 per cent to close at 5,284.

European markets finished higher: London’s FTSE was up 0.3%, Paris and Frankfurt both gained 0.6%.

Asian markets finished mixed: the Nikkei lost 0.4 per cent, the Hang Seng was down 0.2 per cent, and the Shanghai Composite was flat.

The Australian share market closed higher yesterday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 11 points up to finish at 5,424. This morning, on the futures market, the SPI is down 18 points.

Currencies

The Australian Dollar at 7:20AM was buying $US0.7674, 57.54 Pence, 78.06 Yen and 68.28 Euro cents.

Company news

8I Holdings (ASX:8IH), which is a Singaporean financial education seminar business, has acquired a 51% equity interest in Malaysian company, 8 MAD Group Sdn Bhd, for RM430,000, This equates to approximately AU$139,000. 8 MAD is a holding company with two subsidiaries – one is a branding and marketing communications consultancy, and the other is an educational training consultancy. Shares in 8I Holdings are steady at 75 cents.

Pilbara Minerals Ltd (ASX:PLS) has released its full year results for the last financial year. The company recorded no operating revenue and an operating loss of $15.9 million – which was largely due to expensed exploration and development costs on its Pilangoora Project. Shares in Pilbara are down 1.85% at 53 cents.

Commodities

Gold has lost $4.50 to $US1,350 an ounce for the December contract on Comex.
Silver has lost $0.27 to $19.87 for December.
Copper is up $0.01 to $2.10 a pound for December.
Oil has risen $1.31 to $US46.14 a barrel for October light crude.

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