While the US markets were closed for the Thanksgiving Holiday, the turmoil in the global financial markets took a breather. With Wall Street out of action, the Australian share market is set to take leads from Europe. Britain and France’s shares closed higher overnight, with the banks and miners performing strongly, despite worries about European debt problems. On Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 and NASDAQ were all closed because of the US thanksgiving holiday. European stocks were higher: London’s FTSE is up 42 points, Paris is up 13 points and Frankfurt is up 56. To Asian markets, stocks were higher: Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 31, Tokyo’s Nikkei was up 50 points and China’s Shanghai Composite is up 38 points. The Australian share market finished relatively steady on Thursday. The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 9 points higher to 4,593 and on the futures market the SPI200 is down 4 points. Turning to currencies and the Aussie Dollar at 8:00AM was buying 98.12 US cents, 62.27 Pence Sterling, 82.05 Yen and 73.46 Euro cents. On Thursday shares in Nexus Energy Ltd (ASX:NXS)
closed 4.76 per cent lower at $0.50. Nexus Energy and Shell have signed a deal on a three-year extension on its rights to the Crux liquids project off Western Australia valued at $1 billion. As part of the agreement, Nexus, which currently has an 85 per cent stake in Crux, plans to sell up to a 45 per cent stake in the project. For the year ended 30 June 2010, Nexus reported a net profit of $1.03 million. Yesterday shares in Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (ASX:FMG)
closed 2.79 per cent higher at $6.63. Fortescue’s second-biggest shareholder, China’s Hunan Valin Iron and Steel Group, has sold around $193 million worth of shares in the iron ore miner. State-owned Hunan Valin sold 29 million shares on-market on Tuesday, bringing its holding from 17.3 per cent to 16.26 per cent. Last year Hunan Valin paid around $1.2 billion for its stake in the miner, becoming Fortescue’s second largest shareholder after founder and chief executive Andrew Forrest who holds 31 per cent. For the year ended 30 June 2010, Fortescue booked a net profit of $682 million. Ex-dividends: There are no companies going ex-dividend today. Companies that are going ex-dividend on Monday are BT Investment Management, Infratil and Fischer and Paykel Health. To commodities: No commodities traded on Comex last night because of the US Thanksgiving holiday. Oil was also closed and last traded at $83.86 for December light crude in New York.