Record highs in US: Aus shares to open higher

Market Reports

by Kathy Skantzos

Following positive leads from US markets, the Australian share market looks set to open higher today.

The S&P 500 posted its first 8-day winning streak since 2013 and its sixth straight record close since 1997. The Dow Jones outperformed closing 114 points higher, with Goldman Sachs and Boeing making the most gains.

The indexes were pulled along by financials and information technology. Financials did well on the back of the White House passing its $4.1 trillion budget in the first step towards rolling out its tax reform.

The Nasdaq moved up 0.8 per cent, on track to complete an eight-day winning streak. The greenback is up, hitting a seven-week high.

On the commodities front, oil has gained more than 1.5 per cent. Gold has fallen and iron ore has dropped nearly 1 per cent.

US economic news

The US Balance of Trade narrowed to US$42.4 billion in August from US$43.6 billion in July. This is lower than market expectations of US$42.7 billion and the weakest trade deficit since September.

Exports grew 0.4 per cent to US$195.3 billion in August, the highest level in more than 2 and a half years. Imports fell 0.1 per cent to US$237.7 billion in August.

US jobless claims fell by 12,000 to 260,000 last week, according to figures released from the US Department of Labor.

Local economic news

AIG and HIA will release the Performance of Construction Index figures today. Latest figures showed a sharp drop to 55.3 in August from 60.5 the previous month, the lowest reading since April 2017.


Wall Street closed up yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.5 per cent to close at 22,775, the S&P 500 added 0.6 per cent to close at 2,552 and the NASDAQ is up 0.78 per cent to close at 6,585.

European markets closed mixed: London’s FTSE gained 0.5 per cent, Paris is 0.3 per cent higher and Frankfurt is flat, down 0.02 per cent.

Tokyo’s Nikkei closed flat. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and China’s Shanghai Composite were both closed.

The Australian share market closed flat yesterday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed flat to finish at 5,652.

On the futures market the SPI is 36 points up.

Company news

Havilah Resources (ASX:HAV) has secured a $2 million placement to fund its copper growth strategy. The private placement with New York asset manager Bergen Global includes 6.2 million shares at a 13 per cent premium at 33 cents a share. The mining company also announced capital raising of $5.4 million through the issue of 27.1 million new fully paid ordinary shares. Shares in Havilah Resources (ASX:HAV) last traded 13.8 per cent lower to $0.25.


6 companies are going ex-dividend today. 

Aberdeen Leaders (ASX:ALR) is paying 1 cent fully franked
AUB Group (ASX:AUB) is paying 29.5 cents fully franked
Eildon Capital (ASX:EDC) is paying 1.79 per cent fully franked
Fonterra (ASX:FSF) is paying 15.61 cents unfranked 
Global Value Fund (ASX:GVF) is paying 3.15 cents, 50 per cent franked 
Seymor Whyte (ASX:SWL) is paying 44.5 cents fully franked


One Australian Dollar at 7:45AM was buying 77.94 US cents, 59.44 Pence Sterling, 87.94 Yen and 66.60 Euro cents.


Gold has lost $6.80 to $US1,270 an ounce.
Silver has lost $0.01 to $US16.61 an ounce.
Oil has gained $0.77 to $US50.75 a barrel.

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