The Australian share market managed to close marginally higher today. After opening lower following negative offshore leads, the market traded within a 50-point range to close flat.
At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 3 points higher, or 0.1 per cent higher, to finish at 5,736.
Dow futures are suggesting a fall of 22 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a dip of 4 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing lift of 1 point.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a flat start tomorrow morning
Value of trades
The top three stocks by value were Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO), Westpac (ASX:WBC) and Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA).
The unemployment rate for October held steady at 5 per cent, with the labour force participation rate up 0.1 per cent, to 65.6 per cent. Total employment increased by 32,800, also beating expectations.
Telecommunications, IT and cloud products and services provider Inabox Group (ASX:IAB) has this afternoon advised the market of a takeover offer from SB&G Group consortium that a subsidiary intends to make an all cash takeover offer at 90c each. The Inabox Group (ASX:IAB) board is considering the offer and will advise shareholders of its decision as soon as possible. Shares in Inabox Group (ASX:IAB) closed 11.1 per cent higher at 90c.
S&P Global has advised Coles Group is set be added to the ASX200 on 20 November. Subject to final court and shareholder approval Wesfarmers (ASX:WES) will spin-off Coles Group (ASX:COL). Wesfarmers will spin-off 1 share of Coles Group Limited for every 1 Wesfarmers share held.
Seven Group Holdings and its subsidiaries have increased their major holding in Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) from about 26 per cent to 29 per cent.
And finally, financial software company Xero (ASX:XRO) has announced plans to drive UK business, buying a cloud-based accounting firm, Instafile, for £5.25 million. It’s the first purchase Xero has made since it raised US$300 million in October, via a convertible note issue.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Energy, adding 1 per cent, while the worst performing sector was Consumer Staples, shedding 0.8 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was G8 Education (ASX:GEM), rising 11.6 per cent to close at $2.68. Shares in Appen (ASX:APX) and Elders (ASX:ELD) followed higher.
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR), dropping 5.3 per cent to close at $1.70. Shares in Aveo (ASX:AOG) and Incitec Pivot (ASX:IPL) followed lower.
Asian markets are trading mixed at the moment. Japan’s Nikkei has lost 0.5 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.4 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.7 per cent.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,212 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 0.2 per cent to US$75.91. Its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.1 per cent.
Light crude is US$0.37 higher at US$56.21 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.77 US cents.
Bitcoin has fallen 11.3 per cent to US$5,637, Ethereum has fallen 14.2 per cent to US$177 and EOS has fallen about 12.7 per cent to US$4.56, in the last 24 hours.