November jobless rate fell to 6.8%: ASX closes 1.2% higher

Market Reports

by Melissa Darmawan

It has been a positive day of trade for the Australian share market as it continued to climb throughout the day ending 1.2 per cent higher. Shares in Netwealth (ASX:NWL) performed well today while Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHL) did not fare well despite after upgrading its Winchester South Project metallurgical coal mine JORC Resource. All of the sectors closed in the black.

S&P/ASX 200

The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 78 points higher to finish at 6757.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 66 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 8 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a rise of 34 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 72 point rise tomorrow morning.

Local economic news

LabourForce figures were released today for by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) with the unemployment rate decreased to 6.8 per cent with the employment rate increased by 0.7 per cent while total household wealth increased 1.7 per cent to a record high of $11,351 billion for November.

Company news

Media company Nine Entertainment (ASX:NEC) have announced an upgrade of earnings after showing growth in their advertising revenue in the lead up to Christmas. In mid November, Nine held their AGM expecting a 30 per cent increase in EBITDA before specific items. Since then an upgrade in earnings to 40 per cent to $351 million compared to $251 million in the prior corresponding period. Shares in Nine Entertainment (ASX:NEC) closed 3.4 per cent higher at $2.43.

Health imaging company Pro Medicus’ (ASX:PME) US subsidiary, Visage Imaging Inc. has signed a 5-year contract for $18 million with MedStar Health, the largest health system in the Maryland and Washington, D.C. areas. This will provide MedStar with a fully cloud deployed environment on the Google Cloud Platform. The workflow will be implemented across all of MedStar’s radiology and subspecialty imaging departments.). Shares in Pro Medicus (ASX:PME) closed 3.3 per cent higher at $32.15.
Looking at some more headlines

Toll road company Transurban (ASX:TCL) is set to sell their 50 per cent interest in their Chesapeake assets in the US for $2.8 billion to Australian Super, Canada Pension Plan and UniSuper.

Freedom Foods Group (ASX:FNP) is to sell its cereal and snacks operations to The Arnott’s Group for $20 million.

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was information technology gaining 3.3 per cent while the sector with the fewest gains was consumer staples adding 0.3 per cent. 

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Netwealth (ASX:NWL), rising 6.8 per higher to close at $17.03. Shares in Westgold Resources (ASX:WGX) and Perenti Global (ASX:PRN)followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Service Stream (ASX:SSM),dropping 11.9 per cent to close at $1.85. Shares in Blackmores (ASX:BKL) and Whitehaven Coal (ASX:NST) followed lower. 

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.2 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has gained 0.2 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.7 per cent. 

Commodities and the dollar 

Gold is trading at US$1,867 an ounce. 
Iron ore price is 0.9 per cent higher at US$156.45.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 1.4 per cent.
Light crude is $0.34 higher at US$47.63 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 75.92 US cents.

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