It has been a tentative start to the trading session for the Australian share market, bouncing at the open but then retracing about an hour into trade and now tracking just 0.03 per cent higher at noon. Telcos and Industrials are weighing down the index so far with small losses in Telstra (ASX:TLS) and Vocus Group (ASX:VOC). These losses are being offset by gains in Consumer Staples, Utilities and Consumer Discretionaries.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 3 points up at 5,719. On the futures market the SPI is 11 points higher.
Checking in with how Asian markets are tracking now, Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.2 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.4 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.55 per cent.
Spotless Group Limited (ASX:SPO) is continuing to insist that its shareholders ignore the pressure from Downer EDI to accept what Spotless considers a hostile takeover offer. Spotless maintains Downer remains short of its objectives to acquire control and full ownership of Spotless Group. In recent weeks Spotless has reaffirmed is strategy and positive business momentum. Shares in Spotless Group are trading down 0.22 per cent at $1.15.
Coca Cola Amatil Limited (ASX:CCL) has announced it has signed agreements with Charter Hall for the sale and leaseback of its Richlands Manufacturing and warehousing facility in Queensland. The sale will deliver proceeds of around $156 million and result in a one off gain of $100 million before tax. These gains will be reflected in the drinks giant’s second half results for 2017. Shares in Coca Cola Amatil are trading down 0.39 per cent at $9.03.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is Consumer Staples, gaining 0.6 per cent to 9,193. Shares in Metcash (ASX:MTS) have risen 6.16 per cent and trading at $2.33. Shares in Tassal Group (ASX:TGR) and Woolworths (ASX:WOW) are also stronger.
The worst performing sector is Industrials, falling 0.3 per cent to 5,870. Shares in GWA Group (ASX:GWA) have fallen 1.57 per cent, trading at $3.13. Shares in Monadelphous Group (ASX:MND) and Macquarie Atlas Roads (ASX:MQA) are also lower.
Gold and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,256 an ounce and the Australian dollar is buying $US0.7576.