The Australian sharemarket finished the day largely in the red despite gains for retail stocks such as JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman. JB Hi-Fi ended the session up over 5 per cent after announcing a 21 per cent jump in profit and an almost 80 per cent increase to its final dividend. Other retailers including Kathmandu and Super Retail followed the electronics retailer higher. CSL also lifted slightly following media reports the biotech company is in vaccine talks with AstraZeneca. Financials were the major lag on the market today with NAB down over 2 per cent and CBA shedding 1 per cent.
The S&P/ASX200 index
At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 0.8 per cent down or 50 points lower to finish at 6,076.
US futures are all higher
Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 99 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a gain of 11 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a lift of 58 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 59 point fall tomorrow morning
Local economic news
The ABS has released data on overseas travel arrivals with low levels continuing in July. International arrivals to Australia decreased by 29.1 per cent compared to June and were down 99.1 per cent compared to the year earlier period
Rare metals miner Lynas Corporation (ASX:LYC) has announced a fully underwritten equity raising to raise about $425 million to fund Lynas “2025 foundation” projects.
New shares will be issued at $2.30 per share, representing a 11.9 per cent discount to last close. Shares in Lynas last traded $2.61.
JB Hi-Fi Limited has enjoyed a bumper year in which net profit jumped by 21 per cent to $302 million as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Shares in GWA Group dropped by over 10 per cent today after the bathroom fittings maker flagged a weak construction market due to covid-19 and a hit to its full-year profits.
Global property group Lendlease has been hammered across its major operations from the global pandemic posting a loss of $310 million for the financial year this morning.
Best and worst performers of the day
The best performing was utilities adding 0.3 per cent while the worst performing sector was financial, shedding 1.7 per cent. The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was BEACH ENERGY (ASX:BPT), rising 7.1 per cent to close at $1.58. Shares in ADBRI (ASX:ABC) and JB Hi-Fi (ASX:JBH) followed higher.
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was GWA Group (ASX:GWA), dropping 10.5 per cent to close at $2.47. Shares in Bendigo and Adelaide Bank (ASX:BEN) and Reliance Worldwide (ASX:RWC) followed lower.
Mixed Japan’s Nikkei has shed 0.7 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 1.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 2.3 per cent.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,948 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 0.9 per cent to US$122.44.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 0.8 per cent.
Light crude has gained US$0.32 to US$42.33 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 71.81 US cents.