Positive territory: Aus shares close 0.7% higher

Market Reports

by Clive Tompkins

It has been a positive end to the trading session for the Australian share market today, with the market building on its positive start, closing 0.7 per cent higher. While most sectors were up, financials & consumer staples were the star performers with gold stocks also strongly bid. REITs & Telcos however fell.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 40 points up to finish at 5,706.

The value of trades was $5.3 billion on volume of 803 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) and QBE Insurance Group (ASX:QBE).

On the futures market the SPI is 54 points up.

Asian markets
The Nikkei is 0.1 per cent lower.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is up 0.5 per cent.
The Shanghai Composite is 0.8 per cent higher.

Company news
Oventus Medical Limited (ASX:OVN) has raised $7 million in a placement at an issue price of $0.36 per share. The medical device company which specialises in the treatment of sleep apnoea will also be conducting a share purchase plan capped at $2 million at the same price. The capital raising follows the company’s announcement earlier this week stating it had signed a global distribution agreement with Hong Kong based Modern Dental Group.Shares in Oventus Medical Limited closed 5.26 per cent up at $0.40.

Vicinity Centres (ASX:VCX) has announced that its Managing Director and CEO Angus McNaughton will retire at the end of the year.

Cabcharge Australia Limited (ASX:CAB) has entered into an agreement to acquire the business operations of Yellow Cabs Queensland.

Alexium International Group Limited (ASX:AJX) says shipments of its AlexiCool fire retardant for June are tracking to succeed 90,000 kilograms.

Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Financials adding 1.3 per cent to close at 6386. The worst performing sector was REITS, losing 0.9 per cent to close at 1384 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Saracen Minerals (ASX:SAR), rising 5.36 per cent to close at $1.18. Shares in St Barbara and Metcash also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was DEXUS (ASX:DXS), dropping 5.02 per cent to close at $10.03. Shares in Super Retail Group (ASX:SUL) and Domino’s Pizza Enterprises (ASX:DMP) also closed lower.

IPOs 
Imagion Biosystems Limited (ASX:IBX) started trading today. The research and development company floated with an issue price of $0.20, opened at $0.18 and closed at $0.16.

Commodities
Gold is trading at $US1254 an ounce. Light crude is $0.98 down at $US42.53 a barrel. The Australian dollar is buying 75.60 US Cents.