Market Wrap: Aus shares close 0.53% higher

Market Reports

by Carolyn Herbert

It has been a positive start to the trading week for the Australian share market, continuing to add to last week’s gains. Despite lack lustre leads from Wall Street, the local bourse jumped at the open and managed to sustain that momentum throughout the session before closing 0.53 per cent higher. Today it was consumer discretionaries that lead the way, with the energy space not far behind after oil jumped overnight. The materials sector was the worst with losses in the big miners and the gold stocks.

The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 29 points up to finish at 5,459.

The value of trades was $3.4 billion on volume of 506 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA), Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC).

On the futures market the SPI is up 31 points.

Company news

St Barbara Limited (ASX:SBM) has repurchased an additional US$40 million in aggregate principal of its US144A senior secure notes. The notes were repurchased at a 3.3 per cent premium to par value, which is proximate to recent market trades. The company says the note repurchase will reduce future interest expense by around $4.7 million per annum. Shares in St Barbara closed 0.28 per cent lower at $3.53.

ImpediMed Limited (ASX:IPD) has announced it will partner with Vanderbilt University for a series of clinical trials involving patients and clinicians.

Martin Aircraft Company Limited (ASX:MJP) has announced it has signed a formal Alliance Agreement with US based Avwatch Incorporated.

Elders Limited (ASX:ELD) has announced it has extended its hybrid offer by a further two weeks.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Consumer Discretionaries adding 1.4 per cent to close at 2,139. The worst performing sector was Materials, losing 0.1 per cent to close at 8,809 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Oil Search, rising 3.87 per cent to close at $7.25. Shares in Mesoblast and iSentia also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was Mineral Resources, dropping 5.54 per cent to close at $9.38. Shares in Sandfire Resources and Sims Metals also closed lower.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,330 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.23 up at $US46.65 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7598.


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