Nudging higher: Aus shares 0.69% higher at noon

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

Following the US share market closing in the red overnight, despite the Dow Jones closing above the 20,000 point record, the Australian share market opened higher in the black, and is now tracking 0.69 per cent higher at noon.
Gains were seen across all the main sectors, with the financials and consumers staples leading the charge. The main drag this session has been from the Materials and Industrials, with the likes of BHP Billiton (BHP) falling almost 1%.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 39 points up at 5,710. On the futures market the SPI is 7 points higher.

Economic news

The Australia Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has reported the largest quarterly rise in export prices since June 2010. Export Price Index lifted 12.4% in December 2016 quarter. Import Price Index rose 0.2% in Dec quarter 2016

The ABS also reported a subdued price rise for goods and services produced in Australia. The Producer Prices Index (PPI) rose 0.5% in the December 2016 quarter. The largest price rises were seen in building construction, petroleum refining and manufacturing and accommodation.

Company news

AirXpanders Incorporated (ASX: AXP) has announced it’s raised $45 million in private placement. The medical device company, focusing on breast reconstruction will mainly use the proceeds to accelerate its investment in US sales and marketing, which also includes hiring a US sales team. AirXpanders will also use the funds to build inventory in the US and complete a commercial manufacturing expansion. Shares in AirXpanders Incorporated are 5.1% lower at $1.02

Pro-Pac Packaging Limited (ASX:PPG) has reported weaker first half year results for 31 December 2016, compared to the same period last year. The producer and supplier of industrial packaging has reported its revenue dropped to $116 million, while it’s Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization ( EBITDA) also fell to $7.2 million. The company says its experiencing weaker than normal conditions and reduced demand, particularly in the red meat, beverage and retail markets. Shares in Pro-Pac Packaging are trading lower 5.32% to 45 cents.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is Staples, gaining 1.6 per cent to 8,945. Shares in Asalo Care (ASX:ASY) have risen 3.28 per cent and trading at $1.42. Shares in Woolworths (ASX:WOW) and Treasury Wines Estates (ASX:TWE) are also stronger.

The worst performing sector is Materials, falling 0.9 per cent to 10,407. Shares in Northern Star (ASX:NST) have fallen 8.48 per cent, trading at $3.62. Shares in Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) and Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) are also lower.

Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,186 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7527. 


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