The Australian share market is on track for its fifth day of straight gains and six weeks of profits and we are just one point off a fresh 10 year high.
Most sectors are trading higher today with the discretionary players leading, followed by miners.
Iron ore price rose 0.6 per cent to US$66.83 and its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.63 per cent.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 15 points or 0.3 per cent higher at 6,134. On the futures market the SPI is 11 points higher.
Local economic news
Housing finance fell 4.4 per cent in March, with investment loans tumbling 9 per cent. In the previous month, investment property loans actually rose 0.5 per cent (in seasonally adjust terms), so it’s a big reverse. As for home loans, or owner-occupied loans they fell 2.2 per cent, a slightly bigger drop than the expected fall of an even 2 per cent.
Perpetual (ASX:PPT) has appointed Rob Adams as its new CEO and managing director, with him set to start on 24 September this year. He’s previously held chief executive positions at Challenger Funds Management (ASX:CGF) and First State Investments (UK). Rob Adams is currently head of Pan-Asia for global investment management company, Janus Henderson (ASX:JHG) and also serves on its global executive committee. Adams succeeds Geoff Lloyd who will stand down on 30 June 2018, but remains available to transition leadership responsibilities. Shares in Perpetual (ASX:PPT) are trading 4.7 per cent higher at $42.42.
Cleanaway Waste Management (ASX:CWY) is a set closer to taking over Tox Free (ASX:TOX). It comes as Tox Tree (ASX:TOX) lodged orders from the Federal Court of Australia approving the scheme of arrangement, with it expected to be implemented on Friday 25 May 2018. TOX shares will be suspended from trading on Friday 11 May at the close of trade. Tox Free (ASX:TOX) last traded at $3.44 while Cleanaway Waste Management (ASX:CWY) is 0.3 per cent lower at $1.70.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is discretionary adding 0.9 per cent worst performing sector is utilities, shedding 0.8 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Perpetual (ASX:PPT), rising Perpetual (ASX:PPT) rising 4.7 per cent at $42.42, followed by shares in Pendal (ASX:PDL) and REA Group (ASX:REA).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is AMP (ASX:AMP), dropping 6.2 per cent to $3.71, followed by shares in IOOF Holdings ASX:IFL) and CYBG PLC (ASX:CYB).
Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.7 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.8 per cent and the Shanghai Composite is flat.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,320 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 75.29 US cents.
Bitcoin is at US$8,971, Ethereum is at US$731 and EOS trades at US$17.64