Strong finish: Aus shares close 0.4% higher

Market Reports

by Carolyn Herbert

It has once again been a strong finish to the trading session for the Australian share market, jumping at the open and maintaining that momentum throughout the session before closing 0.4 per cent higher. The materials space did the bulk of the heavy lifting this session with gains in mining giants BHP and Rio Tinto, however gold stocks experienced a pull-back after another decline in the price of the precious metal overnight.

The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 22 points down to finish at 5,614.

The value of trades was $4.7 billion on volume of 724 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP), Sydney Airport (ASX:SYD) and Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA).

On the futures market the SPI is 27 points higher.

Company news

Fonterra Shareholders Fund (ASX:FSF) has provided a market update to shareholders on its operations. The milk processor says it has seen decreased milk production in New Zealand, Australia and Europe, however growth in the US has been maintained. Fonterra forecast milk collection for 2016/17 in New Zealand will be a 7 per cent decrease on last season. However the company says import growth in China has rebounded and growth continues in Asia and Latin America. Shares in Fonterra closed 2.51 per cent up at $5.71.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) served law firm Slater & Gordon (ASX:SGH) with two notices to produce documents.

REA Group Ltd (ASX:REA) has entered a contract to sell its European businesses for $189.7 million.

Cabcharge Australia Ltd (ASX:CAB) has agreed to sell its 49% stake in a private bus joint venture (ComfortDelGro Cabcharge Pty Ltd) for $186 million. 

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Materials adding 1.2 per cent to close at 9,617. The worst performing sector was Industrials, losing 0.6 per cent to close at 5,154 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Mayne Pharma (ASX:MYX), rising 7.06 per cent to close at $1.36. Shares in A2 Milk (ASX:A2M) and Infigen Energy (ASX:IFN) also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was Sydney Airport (ASX:SYD), dropping 5.16 per cent to close at $6.07. Shares in Sonic Health and Estia Health also closed lower.

IPOs

 Axsesstoday Limited (ASX:AXS) started trading. The finance provider floated at $1.00, opened at $1.07 and closed at $1.20.

Horizon Gold Limited (ASX:HRN) also started trading today. The gold producer floated at $0.40, opened at $0.35 and closed at $0.35.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,136 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.45 higher at $US53.51 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7257.



 

Carolyn Herbert

Finance News Network
Carolyn joined FNN in August 2015 as the Head of News and also presented the Market at Midday and the Market Wrap. With more than five years of broadcast journalism experience, Carolyn has worked as a finance anchor on the Sky News Business channel and as an anchor and reporter for ABC News. She is also a qualified corporate lawyer specialising in IPOs, takeovers and mergers and acquisitions.