Trump jitters ASX on Thursday: Aus shares 0.4% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market has paved the way for its second day of losses. It comes as Wall Street’s three major indices closed lower after US President Donald Trump warned Russia to “get ready” for a possible US missile strike on Syria.

Oil surged to a three year high which is buoying energy stocks with the likes of Infigen Energy (ASX:IFN) up over 7 per cent, Origin Energy (ASX:ORG) up 1.7 and Oil Search (ASX:OSH) up 1 per cent.

Meantime, Aluminium is at an 11-week high while the iron ore price fell, so we are seeing some muted gains in the miners.

As for what’s keeping the ASX under water, property, industrials and staples are leading a basket of sectors lower.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 0.4 per cent lower or 23 points down at 5,806. On the futures market the SPI is 23 points lower.

Economic news

Total dwelling loans including home and investment loans rose by 1 per cent in February

Company news 

Toll road operator, Transurban (ASX:TCL) has priced 200 million Swiss Franc’s in notes, with the funds ear marked to repay its recently established bank bridging facility for Transurban Queensland. Transurban Queensland is about 63 per cent owned by Transurban. And it’s the third issuance by Transurban Queensland, really highlighting the group’s commitment to use global capital markets to meet the company’s goals. As for Transurban (ASX:TCL) shares they are trading 1.2 per cent lower at $11.23.

Billboard company, oOh!media (ASX:OML) has confirmed it did submit a non-binding indicative offer to buy HT&E’s (ASX:HT1) out of home division, Adshel. oOh!media says HT&E has declined in engaging with the company about the offer. It comes as HT&E’s (ASX:HT1) advised yesterday, that the offer doesn’t reflect the best interest of shareholders or the value of the Adshel division. An amount was not disclosed, and the announcements follows media speculation about the purchase. oOh!media (ASX:OML) trades 1.2 per cent lower at $4.72.

The second largest salmon producer in Tasmania, Huon Aquaculture (ASX:HUO) presented to Credit Suisse, noting global supply is expected to weaken in 2018, with wild captures expected to continue to fall until 2050, while aquaculture supply to continue to grow to 220 million tones. It also noted Tasmania has been hampered by warmer waters since late last year, with temps marked as 'not being optimal for fish growth'. Its shares trade 2.7 per cent higher at $4.62.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is materials adding 0.2 per cent to 11,381 points while the worst performing sector is reits, shedding 0.9 per cent to 1,307 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Infigen Energy (ASX:IFN), rising 7.1 per cent to $0.64, followed by shares in Bellamy's Australia Limited (ASX BAL) and Healthscope Limited (ASX:HSO).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Retail Food Group Limited (ASX:RFG), dropping 5.9 per cent to $0.93, followed by shares in Aveo Group (ASX:AOG) and Whitehaven Coal Limited (ASX:WHC).

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has lost 0.2 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.2 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.4 per cent.

Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,351 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 77.60 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin trades at US$6,944, EOS trades at US$8.55 and Ethereum trades at to US$432


 

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.