Flat-lining Friday: Aus shares close 0.1% higher

Market Reports

by Carolyn Herbert

It has been an uneventful end to the trading week for the Australian share market, with the local bourse limping home to a flat finish or 0.1 per cent higher. Stimulus from the Bank of Japan ended up being a non-event, which saw Aussie investors lost interest towards the end of the session. In the end it was utilities that led the gains, followed by the gold miners after a bounce in the price of the precious metal overnight.

Today, the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 6 points up to finish at 5,562. Over the week the index gained 64 points.

The value of trades was $7.6 billion on volume of 921 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA), BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX:RIO).

On the futures market the SPI is up 5 points.

US markets

Looking at Wall Street, US major indexes were mixed over the four trading days this week: The Dow Jones Industrial Average has lost 0.6 per cent. The S&P 500 Index has lost 0.2 per cent. The NASDAQ has added 1.1 per cent. The 100 Index has added 1.2 per cent.

Economic news

Private sector credit for the June quarter rose 0.1 per cent according to latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. This was mainly attributed to rises in the prices received for petroleum refining and petroleum fuel manufacturing. Private sector credit rose 1 per cent for the year.

Company news

Megaport Limited (ASX:MP1) has announced it has successfully completed a private placement of 10.5 million shares to sophisticated and institutional investors to raise $17.85 million. Megaport is also announcing that it will offer existing shareholders an opportunity to acquire additional shares at the same price as the placement under a Share Purchase Plan. The funds from the raising will be put towards the company’s elastic interconnection platforms and continued expansion in Europe and North America. Shares in Megaport closed 5.83 per cent up at $2.18.

ResMed Inc. (ASX:RMD) has announced its results for Q4, showing an 8 percent increase in revenue on the prior corresponding period.

Mayne Pharma Group Limited (ASX:MYX) has announced it has entered into a settlement agreement with Forest Laboratories.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Utilities adding 1.5 per cent to close at 8,076. The worst performing sector was Energy, losing 1.3 per cent to close at 8,234 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Bega Cheese, rising 6.9 per cent to close at $6.20. Shares in Resmed and GUD Holdings also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was Beach Energy, dropping 5.13 per cent to close at $0.56. Shares in Aconex and Fortescue also closed lower.

Commodities and the dollar

The price of gold is trading at $US1,335 an ounce, and is up $11.67 over the week.
Light crude is $0.82 lower at $US41.10 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $0.7510 and is up 0.4 cents over the week.


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