Following negative leads from from US markets, the Australian share market looks set to open flat this morning. All major US indexes finished in the red on Friday, as investors weighed up the uncertainty surrounding the French election, a drop in oil prices and further broad comments from the Trump administration regarding tax reform.Markets
US economic news
Data released late last week showed US existing home sales surged in March, climbing 4.4 percent month on month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.71 million units. Manufacturing activity is on the decline however, with the Markit PMI dropping to 52.8 read for April, according to the latest flash data.
Wall Street closed lower on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.15 per cent to close at 20,548, the S&P 500 dropped 0.3 per cent to close at 2,349 and the NASDAQ fell 0.11 per cent to close at 5,911.
European markets closed mixed: London’s FTSE slipped 0.1 per cent, Paris dropped 0.4 per cent and Frankfurt gained 0.2 per cent.
Asian markets closed mixed: Tokyo’s Nikkei added 1.03 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.1 per cent, and China’s Shanghai Composite closed flat.
The Australian share market closed higher on Friday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 33 points up to finish at 5,854. On the futures market the SPI is 0.Company news
The board of Baby Bunting Group Limited (ASX:BBN)
has announced Stephen Roche will join as a Non-executive director effective 1 May 2017.
Mr Roche held the role of Managing Director and CEO of Australian Pharmaceutical Industries between August 2006 and February of this year. During his tenure he oversaw the expansion of the group’s Priceline Pharmacy network to over 400 stores with annualised retail turnover of more than $2 billion. Baby Bunting shares last traded 2.66% lower at $1.83.Ex-dividends
2 companies are going ex-dividend today: Class Limited (ASX:CL1)
will pay 1 cent fully franked, while Ridley Corporation (ASX:RIC)
will pay 1.5 cents, also fully franked.Currencies
The Australian Dollar at 7:30AM was buying $US75.70 cents, 58.98 Pence Sterling, 83.42 Yen and 69.53 Euro cents.Commodities
Gold has gained $2.60 to $US1,286 an ounce for the June contract on Comex.
Silver has fallen $0.10 to $18.00 for May contract on Comex.
Oil has lost $1.09 to $US49.63 a barrel for May light crude in New York.