Korean stumble tears us from 6,000: Aus shares close 0.1% higher

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market started the trading week on a high, with over half of the sectors chiming up, while a drop in Telcos pulled back gains and left Monday’s session with a modest lift of a tenth of a per cent.

In morning trade the ASX200 traded above the 6,000 point record level, thanks to solid gains from Utilities, Healthcare and Industrial stocks. The likes of Downer EDI (ASX:DOW) rose over 5 per cent after it announced $25 million of cost savings from its majority stake in Spotless Group (ASX:SPO).

In the Financials space, Macquarie Group (ASX:MQG) led the majors and rose almost 1 per cent in the session, closing above $100. It also outperformed the big four banks, with ANZ (ASX:ANZ) and CBA (ASX:CBA) closed in the red.

It is also important to note, in the afternoon, ASX sentiment and buying started to drop away after Korean blue-chip giant, Samsung Electronics, shares fell 4.4 per cent. And that caused the Korean market to fall 1.3 per cent.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 6 points up, or 0.10 per cent higher to finish at 5,989

The value of trades was $4.3 billion on volume of 543 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) and Westpac Banking Corp (ASX:WBC).

On the futures market the SPI is 6 points up.

Company news 

Telstra (ASX:TLS) is now assessing the affect that the nbn co rollout halt will have on its performance. It comes as nbn advised it would temporarily stop all hybrid-co-axial (HFC) technology sales for 6 to 9 months (from 11 December 2017). Telstra says the delay in the nbn rollout will also delay a proportion of the payments to Telstra, and it will update the market once its assessment is complete. Shares Telstra closed about 0.6 per cent lower at $3.46.

BlueScope (ASX:BSL) advised its Australian and New Zealand operations, led by incoming CEO and MD, Mark Vassella will now be separated into two businesses, BlueScope’s Australian Steel Products, and New Zealand and Pacific Islands. Meantime, the group’s Chief Financial Officer, will now lead two key international businesses as Chief Executive of NS BlueScope and of BlueScope China.

Pushpay (ASX:PPH) is offering loans, to certain parties to buy shares in the payment platform company as part its share incentive.

And a Dubai based consulting firm has increased its majority stake in resources and energy company, WorleyParsons (ASX:WOR), with Dar Al-Handasah takings its stake in WorleyParsons, to 19.9 per cent up from 15.15 per cent.

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was Utilites, adding 1 per cent to close at 8,454.
The worst performing sector was Telcos, shedding 0.4 per cent to close at 1,246 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Downer EDI Limited (ASX:DOW), rising 5.05 per cent to close at $7.07. Shares in BT Investment Management Limited (ASX:BTT) and Worleyparsons Limited (ASX:WOR) also closed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Aconex Limited (ASX:ACX), dropping about 3.5 per cent to close at $5.28. Shares in Nanosonics Limited (ASX: NAN) and Beach Energy Limited (ASX:BPT) also closed lower.

Asian markets

Are lower; Japan’s Nikkei has lost 0.6 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has shed 0.5 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.8 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,291 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.52 up at $US58.95 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 76.05 US cents.

 

Jessica Amir

Finance News Network
Jessica joined FNN in January 2017 with a passion for equities and funds management. As Head of News, she has been a broadcast journalist for over seven years, specialising in finance. She has been a journalist with Sky News Business, ABC 1, ABC's The Business and ABC24. She’s also worked as a TV reporter for regional Channel 7 and 9. She also previously worked as a financial planner and real estate agent.