Outlook: Aus shares set to open lower

Market Reports

The Australian share market is set to open lower after offshore markets fell following renewed concerns about slowing global growth and weak economic figures from the US.
 
Figures

Wall Street closed in the red yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 115 points to close at 13,057, the S&P500 dropped 11 points to close at 1,402 and the Nasdaq lost 20 points, closing at 3,053.

European markets closed mixed: London’s FTSE added 2 points, Paris lost 29 points and Frankfurt lost 68 points.

Asian markets closed higher: Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 244 points, Tokyo’s Nikkei added 46 and China’s Shanghai Composite gained 5 points.

The Australian share market closed higher yesterday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 8 points up to finish at 4,384. On the futures market the SPI is 26 points down.

Currencies

The Australian Dollar at 7:30AM was buying $US1.044 cents, 65.84 Pence Sterling, 81.99 Yen and 83.15 Euro cents.

Company news

Retail Food Group Limited (ASX:RFG) has achieved a record full year net profit of $28.5 million, up 4.9 per cent on last year. The food conglomerate says the result is especially satisfying having been achieved amid increased operating costs and decreased consumer confidence. RFG expects recent acquisitions Pizza Capers and Crust Gourmet Pizzas to contribute solidly to the groups earnings in fiscal 2013. They will pay a final fully franked dividend of 9 cents per share, taking the full year pay out to 17.5 cents. Shares in Retail Food Group closed 3.70 per cent up yesterday at $2.80.

Acrux Limited’s (ASX:ACR) net profit has slumped 87 per cent to $7.4 million in fiscal 2012. However the drug delivery company there will be multiple factors that will drive future growth of royalties for its key product, Axiron. Acrux will pay an unfranked final dividend of 8 cents per share. Shares in Acrux closed 0.52 per cent up yesterday at $3.89.
 
Ex-dividends

Australian United Investment Company Limited (ASX:AUI) with a fully franked dividend of 15 cents
Cochlear Limited (ASX:COH) with a 35 per cent franked dividend of $1.25
Diversified United Investment Limited (ASX:DUI) with a fully franked dividend of 7 cents
Fleetwood Corporation Limited (ASX:FWD) with a fully franked dividend of 43 cents
Integrated Research Limited (ASX:IRI) with a 70% franked dividend of 3 cents
QBE Insurance Group Limited (ASX:QBE) with a 15% franked dividend of 40 cents
REA Group Limited (ASX:REA) with a fully franked dividend of 20.5 cents

Commodities

Gold is up $32.30 to $US1,672.80 an ounce for the December contract on Comex. Silver is up $0.90 to $30.46 for September. Copper is up $0.04 at $3.49 a pound. Oil is up $0.99 at US$96.27 a barrel for October light crude in New York.