It has been a positive end to the first day of the trading week for the Australian share market, jumping into the black at the open and managing to maintain that momentum throughout the session, closing the day 0.59 per cent higher. While most sectors finished the day higher, Energy and Materials led the charge; but we also saw solid gains in Industrials and Health Care. Telcos proved the be the biggest drag on the market, with losses in the likes of heavyweight Telstra (ASX:TLS) and Amaysim (ASX:AYS).
At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 34 points up to finish at 5,871.
The value of trades was $6.9 billion on volume of 975 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ), Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) and National Australia Bank Limited (ASX:NAB).
On the futures market the SPI is up 35 points.
Taking a look at how Asian markets are tracking in afternoon trade. The Nikkei is 2.5 per cent higher, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is up 0.5 per cent and the Shanghai Composite is down 0.7 per cent.
National Veterinary Care (ASX:NVL) has announced the acquisition of a vet clinic in New Zealand for NZ$1 million to be settled by the end of the financial year. The clinic is located within an existing NVL cluster in New Zealand and subject to final due diligence. The clinic is expected to deliver annualised revenue and EBIT of NZ$1.4 million and NZ$220,000 respectively. Shares in National Vet Care closed 2.33 per cent up at $2.63.
Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) has announced its net profit after tax rose 6% in the first half of the 2017 financial year to $3.9 billion.
Origin Energy (ASX:ORG) has executed an agreement to sell Australia’s largest wind development, the Stockyard Hill Wind Farm for $110 million.
The TPG Consortium has proposed to buy Fairfax Media Limited (ASX:FXJ) with a combination of cash and a consideration to form a newly listed vehicle.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Energy adding 2.35 per cent to close at 9,384. The worst performing sector was Telcos, losing 0.9 per cent to close at 1,510 points.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Nine Entertainment (ASX:NEC), rising 5.34 per cent to close at $1.38. Shares in APN News and Media (ASX:APN) and Galaxy Resources (ASX:GXY) also closed higher.
The worst performing stock was Myer (ASX:MYR), dropping 9.5 per cent to close at $1.00. Shares in Super Retail Group (ASX:SUL) and Newcrest Mining (ASX:NCM) also closed lower.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,230 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.92 higher at $US46.47 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7412.