ASX loses more steam, below 6k mark: Aus shares 0.8% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market its continuing its slide from yesterday with today’s sell off being fuelled more lacklustre Wall Street leads. In the US the S&P 500 dipped below its 50-day moving average with all three of the major indices closing lower in what was a very volatile session

As a result the ASX dropped like a stone at the open falling below the key 6,000 mark with most sectors in selling territory and keeping the local bourse under water. Adding fuel, a weaker basket of economic news.

And as the oil price took a hit energy stocks have claimed the worst performing post so far this session. 

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 0.8 per cent lower or 46 points down at 5,970. On the futures market the SPI is 48 points lower.

Local economic news

New business spending fell in the December quarter 0.2 per cent, while the market expected a gain of 0.9 per cent in seasonally adjusted terms. The weaker than expected result follows private capital expenditure growing in the September quarter by 1.9 per cent. 

As for Australian manufacturing, the index fell 1.2 points to a reading of 57.5 in February. It does indicate further growth in month, but at a slower pace than in January. It’s important to remember, readings above 50 indicate expansion in activity.

Company news 

Yancoal (ASX:YAL) announced a recovery in its result with its profit after tax swinging to $229 million in the 2017 year, recovering from its prior year’s $227 million loss. It comes as it snapped up Rio Tinto’s (ASX:RIO) coal and allied asset business for US$2.69 billion. Yancoal says the business drove immediate production and financial gains. Its operating earnings (EBIT) also charged ahead, swinging to $732 million from just $39 million in the year ending 2016. As for 2018 its advised saleable production guidance should sit between 25 to 37 million tonnes. While its capital expenditure will be around $247 million. Yancoal shares are trading 3.2 per cent higher at $0.16.

Small cap Myanmar Metals (ASX:MYL) shares are galloping ahead today after it announced it has an unexplored ‘tier 1’ deposit, the Bawdin concession and is progressing a drilling program. Its shares are trading 3.3 per cent higher at $0.06.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is reits adding 0.2 per cent to 1,305 points while the worst performing sector is energy, shedding 2.2 per cent to 10,128 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Altium Limited (ASX:ALU), rising 2.6 per cent to $20.76, followed by shares in Iluka Resources (ASX:ILU) and G8 Education (ASX:GEM).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Orocobre (ASX:ORE), dropping 6.9 per cent to $6.09, followed by shares in Genworth Mortgage Insurance Australia (ASX:GMA) and Galaxy Resources (ASX:GXY).

Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,316 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 77.43 US cents.


The three most traded cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin has fallen 3 per cent to US$10,450, Tether is trading at US$1.00, and Ethereum is trading at US$859.

Jessica Amir

Finance News Network
Jessica is a senior finance journalist and presents bulletins including the Market Outlook, Market at Midday and Market Wrap. She also interviews ASX CEOs and leading fund managers. She joined FNN in January 2017 with over six years of broadcast journalism experience including with Sky News Business, ABC 1, ABC's The Business and ABC24. She’s also worked as a TV reporter for Prime 7 and WIN News. Jessica has worked in financial planning for over six years with leading wealth managers and in real estate.