As predicted, the ASX200 bounced at the open after quarterly earnings of major US tech stocks - Facebook, Apple, Twitter and Alphabet exceeded analyst expectations. However, the ASX 200 index is 5 points down or 0.1 per cent lower at 5,955. On the futures market the SPI is pointing to a rise of 5 points.
Local economic news
The Australian Bureau of Statistics released producer price indexes for the September quarter. Final demand (excluding exports) rose 0.4 per cent this quarter compared to last quarter, falling short of the expected 0.7 per cent rise. However, demand fell 0.4 per cent over the past twelve months.
The Reserve Bank of Australia published figures on private sector credit. Private sector credit rose 0.1 per cent in September month on month and is up 2 per cent year on year.
Credit Suisse rates the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ASX:ANZ) as an Outperform, with a price target of $26.20. The broker believes much of the tail risk associated with bad debts is diminishing and the bank is in a strong capital position. Shares in the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ASX:ANZ) are trading almost 1 per cent higher at $18.88.
A subsidiary of ASX listed Electro Optic Systems Holdings (ASX:EOS) is celebrating today. The subsidiary, EOS Defense Systems USA has completed its first R400 remote weapon station at its Huntsville, Alabama facility. Shares in Electro Optic Systems Holdings (ASX:EOS) are trading 0.2 per cent higher at $5.49.
Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) has extended the contract of CEO, Peter King. Peter was originally employed on a 2 year term. The board has amended his contract to a standard 12 month notice period. Westpac Chairman, John McFarlane says “In the short time Peter has been CEO, he has made a significant contribution to Westpac, in a year of unprecedented change. He has guided Westpac through the challenges of Covid 19 as well as settling the AUSTRAC matter.” Shares in Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) are trading 0.5 per cent higher at $18.04.
Nutritional Growth Solutions (ASX:NGS) started trading today, after an oversubscribed IPO. The company is commercialising a range of patented nutritional children's milk formulas and says the IPO should provide capital to accelerate growth in China and the US. It issued shares at $0.20, started trading on the ASX at $0.31, is currently trading at $.0.33.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is Financials, adding 0.8 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Industrials, shedding 1.7 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is AMP (ASX:AMP), rising 20.3 per cent to $1.54, followed by shares in Resmed (ASX:RMD) and Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Western Areas (ASX:WSA), dropping 16.9 per cent to $1.95, followed by shares in Carsales.com (ASX:CAR) and Atlas Arteria (ASX:ALX).
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,868 an ounce.
Iron ore price fell 0.7 per cent to US$116.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of nearly 2.1 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 70.38 US cents.