Flat finish: Aus shares close 0.03% higher

Market Reports

by Carolyn Herbert

It has been a lack lustre end to the trading week for the Australian share market, opening in the black, but losing all momentum towards the end of the session before closing flat or 0.03 per cent higher. At the end of the day the Utilities sector proved to be the biggest weight on the index followed by REITS. The Energy space made a solid rebound this session, after oil prices held overnight and we also saw gains in the materials space.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 2 points up to finish at 5,759.

The value of trades was $5.3 billion on volume of 813 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Rio Tinto Limited (ASX:RIO), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) and Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC).

On the futures market the SPI is flat.

Company news

Seymour White Limited (ASX:SWL) has gone into a trading halt, pending the release of a market sensitive announcement by the company. The infrastructure project company says the announcement relates to a potential control transaction. The company anticipates that the trading halt will be lifted before the open this Thursday. Shares in Seymour White last traded at $1.10.

Australian building materials company, Brickworks Ltd (ASX:BKW) is considering moving its manufacturing activities overseas to avoid passing on higher prices to its customers.

The Managing Director of Coca-Cola Amatil’s Ltd (ASX:CCL) Australian Beverages business, Barry O’Connell, has stepped down from his role.

Roads and Maritime Services has awarded a contract to CIMIC Group’s (ASX:CIM) company, CPB Contractors, for the widening of the M1 Pacific Motorway between Tuggerah and Doyalson in NSW.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Energy adding 1 per cent to close at 8,758. The worst performing sector was Utilities, losing 0.77 per cent to close at 8,325 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Brickworks (ASX:BKW), rising 7.42 per cent to close at $14.05. Shares in St Barbara (ASX:SBM) and Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was Dominos Pizza (ASX:DMP), dropping 3.1 per cent to close at $54.33. Shares in Credit Corp (ASX:CCP) and Mantra Group (ASX:MTR) also closed lower.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,204 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.03 lower at $US49.00 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7563.


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