Healthcare leads the sectors: ASX close 0.1% higher

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market drifted lower following soft leads from Wall Street this morning but managed to pick up momentum and is now tracking 0.1 per cent higher at noon. Iluka (ASX:ILU) shares are still dropping after they flagged $2 billion demerger of BHP iron ore royalties. The ANZ (ASX:ANZ) extended its losses. As for the sectors today Healthcare led the day and Financials fell lower.

The S&P/ASX200 index

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 6 points higher to finish at 6,669.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a 60 points up
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 8 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a lift of 31 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 10 point rise for Monday morning.

Economic News

The Australian Bureau of Statistics said that final demand producer prices in Australia were up 0.4 per cent on quarter in the third quarter of 2019, matching expectations and unchanged from the three months prior.

Company news

Gowing Bros (ASX:GOW) has sold Moonee Market Shopping Centre in the NSW Coffs Harbour district. The sale price was $30.5 million, exceeding its value in Gowings accounts. The centre was originally purchased in April 2010 for $13.2 million. Gowings investment into Moonee Market shopping centre has delivered a significant capital gain for its share holders. Net sale proceeds to be redirected to other development opportunities. Shares in Gowing Bros (ASX:GOW) last traded at $2.26.

Propel Funeral Partners (ASX:PFP) has completed the acquisition of Grahams Funeral Services, and certain freehold properties, in the North Island of New Zealand. Shares in Propel Funeral Partners (ASX:PFP) closed flat at $3.16.

AP Eagers (ASX:APE) completed its sale of the Kloster Motor Group business to the Tony White Group yesterday. The sale generated an expected profit before tax of approximately $20 million.

Investment bank and financial services company, Macquarie Group (ASX:MQG) report an 11 per cent increase in net profit compared to the first half of 2019. However, if you compare these figures to the second half of 2019, the company experience a 13 per cent decrease.

Automotive aftermarket parts company, Bapcor (ASX:BAP), has penned agreements to purchase both Truckline and Diesel Drive. Both businesses are set to be purchased for a combined price of approximately $48 million and are scheduled for completion this year.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Healthcare adding 1.1 per cent while the worst performing sector was Financials, shedding 0.8 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was New Hope Corp (ASX:NHC), rising 6.6 per cent to close at $2.27. Shares in Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) and CSR (ASX:CSR) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Jumbo Interactive (ASX:JIN), dropping 8 per cent to close at $20.44. Shares in Pro Medicus (ASX:PME) and Costa Group Holdings (ASX:CGC) followed lower.

Asian markets

Mixed: 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 added 0.7 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,511 an ounce.
Iron ore price is 1.3 per cent lower at US$85.97.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a lift of 0.8 per cent.
Light crude is US$0.04 lower at US$54.14 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 69.05