The Australian share market closed in the red today, losing ground for the third straight day and finishing slightly lower, 0.1 per cent lower with the the S&P/ASX 200 index losing 6 points, closing at 6,235. Over the week we lost 65 points or 1.1 per cent.
Today we lost momentum despite most sectors making gains today. The material (mining) sector, financials and telcos were the only sector that reversed.
This week the mining sector lost the most, 2.4 per cent, on the back of Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) reporting results which missed market expectations. The iron ore price gained 0.5 to US$66.87 overnight. (Trading higher month on month, clawing up from its US$62.83 level. Iron ore futures are eyeing a gain of 2.3 per cent.
Financials also lost over 2 per cent this week, on the back of a potential mortgage price war, after ANZ (ASX:ANZ) cut its rates.
Dow futures are suggesting a fall of 9 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a dip of 0.3 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing lift of 2 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 11 point fall Monday morning
Value of trades
$5 billion on volume of 608 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA), Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) and BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP).
Retail trade grew by 0.4 per cent in June (neck on neck with May’s retail sales growth), slightly better than the 0.3 per cent lift expected. It comes as department stores sales fell 1.2 per cent in the month. While clothing, footwear and personal accessories sales lifted by 1.7 per cent, following a 2.3 per cent rise in May.
Australia’s service industry slowed more than expected in July. The Australian Industry Group’s (AIG) performance of services index fell by 9.4 points to a reading of 53.6 in July, indicating a slowing of growth from June's record high. It also disappointed some economists who forecast the index would fall to a reading of 55. (But remember, the reading is still in in expansionary territory, above a reading of 50).
Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) has revised its securities trading policy, for its staff and their associates, which came into effect on 1 August 2018, aiming to protect the group from reputational damage from insider trading. At the same time, the big four bank increased its stake in drilling and blast and exploration company, Ausdrill (ASX:ASL) from about 4.4 per cent to 5.1 per cent. Shares in Commonwealth Bank of Australia closed 1.2 per cent lower at $72.83.
Kogan (ASX:KGN) traded 5.3 per cent higher today and above its eight day moving average price. It advised the market it will report its results for the year ending 30 June 2018, in two weeks time (Friday 17 August 2018). Last week it advised its unaudited revenue grew 40 per cent in FY18 on FY17, while its unaudited EBITDA is 90 per cent higher than FY17.
Lithium market darling, Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) has advised amid definitive feasibility study exceptional results and customer confidence from its Pilgangoora lithium-tantalum project, it's now paved the way for a major expansion of the WA project.
a2 Milk Company (ASX:A2M) has increased its holding in Synlait Milk (ASX:SM1) from 9.11 per cent to 17.39 per cent of the company. a2 Milk Company says it has no further plans to increase its holding.
TPI Enterprises (ASX:TPE) has inked a three year supply agreement with one of Europe’s leading pharmaceutical contract manufacturing organisations, to supply Narcotic Raw Materials (NRW) for for the production of codeine key ingredient tablets.
Best and worst performers of the day
The best performing sector was energy adding 1 per cent while the worst performing sector was materials, shedding 0.9 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Appen Limited (ASX:APX), rising 6.5 per cent to close at $11.57. Shares in Pilbara Minerals Limited (ASX:PLS) and Afterpay Touch Group Limited (ASX:APT) followed higher.
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Lynas Corporation Limited (ASX:LYC), dropping 4.9 per cent to close at $2.14. Shares in Automotive Holdings Group. (ASX:AHG) and G8 Education Limited (ASX:GEM) followed lower.
Mixed:Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 0.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.3 per cent.
Wrapped up our four trading days this week mixed: The Dow Jones lost 0.5 per cent, The S&P 500 added 0.3 per cent and the tech heavy Nasdaq gained 0.8 per cent.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,207 an ounce.
Light crude is $1.33 higher at $US68.99 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 73.63 US cents.
Some of the most traded cryptocurrencies are trading lower. Bitcoin has fallen 4 per cent to US$7,366, Ethereum has lost 4 per cent to US$405 and EOS has shed about 2 per cent to US$7.04