With US markets closed for the Presidents holiday and the Chinese markets closed for Chinese new year we are taking direction from what occurred in Europe over night which were lower.
At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 38 points up, or 0.6 per cent higher to finish at 5,942.
Taking all that into consideration the SPI is eyeing a 34 point fall at the open but a number of companies are reporting today and we will go over them in a moment.
On the commodities front, oil rose to its highest price in a week up 1.3 per cent to over $62 a barrel and gold is down half a per cent
On Tuesday the Reserve Bank releases the minutes of its February Board meeting. However, few additional insights are expected following the release of the quarterly Statement of Monetary Policy on February 9.
The Bank’s growth and inflation forecasts were left unchanged which means interest rates are on hold for some time.
Wall street was closed for a public holiday, President's Day.
European markets closed lower yesterday: London’s FTSE dropped 0.6 per cent, Paris lost 0.5 per centand Frankfurt also closed 0.5 per cent lower.
Asian markets, only Tokyo was trading yesterday, up almost 2 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and China’s Shanghai Composite were closed for a public holiday.
Banking group ANZ (ASX:ANZ) has reported an after tax profit of NZ$510 million for the 3 months to December 17. That’s a rise from NZ$393 for the same period the previous year. In more good news for the bank, operating income is also up on the previous period to NZ$1.1 billion. Total revenues for the group were mixed- with commercial and retail divisions seeing a rise and institutional revenue falling. ANZ shares closed 0.7 per cent higher yesterday to $28.05.
All eyes will be on BHP (ASX:BHP) and Oil Search (ASX:OSH), Seven West Media (SWM), Northstar (ASX:NST), G8 Education (ASX:GEM), Investa Office Fund (ASX:IOF) and AV Jennings (ASX:AVJ) just some of the companies reporting today..
4 companies are going ex-dividend today: Dominos Pizza Enterprises (ASX:DMP) is paying 58 cents 40 per cent franked while Computershare (ASX:CPU) is paying 19 cents unfranked.
At 8.40am one Australian Dollar is buying 79.14 US cents, 56.54 Pence Sterling, 84.36 Yen and 63.79 Euro cents.
Gold has dropped $7.30 to $US1349 an ounce.
Silver has lost $0.10 to $US16.70 an ounce.
Oil has gained $0.82 to $US62.37a barrel.
The three most traded cryptocurrencies are trading mixed: Bitcoin has gained 3.6 per cent to $11,254, Tether has lost about 0.2 per cent to $1.00 and Ethereum has gained 0.4 per cent to $945