Stellar start to the week: Aus shares close 0.56% higher

Market Reports

by Liz Pal

The Australian share market has had a stellar day of trade today, with positive gains across the board. After shooting up at the open, the local bourse maintained momentum in the afternoon, with big miners propping up the market.

As for the sectors, Materials gained the most. Star performer Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) rising 3.4 per cent, followed by BHP (ASX:BHP), Fortescue (ASX:FMG) and South 32 (ASX:S32) also gaining.

Top 200 company, Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) also shone brightly today, rising almost 5 per cent on the back of a rise in oil prices. While Bega Cheese (ASX:BGA) gained almost 6 per cent.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 33 points up, or 0.56 per cent higher to finish at 5,847.

The value of trades was $4.5 billion on volume of 630 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Rio Tinto Limited (ASX:RIO), BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) .

On the futures market the SPI is 35 points higher.

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.68 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.9 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.19 per cent.

Local economic news

The total value of owner occupied home loans, excluding alterations and additions, rose 0.9 per cent in trend terms and seasonally adjusted terms. While personal finance increased by 0.5 per cent in August.

Company news

Wesfarmers (ASX:WES) has reported a 16 per cent reduction in emissions intensity since 2013, and a 16 per cent reduction in the total injury frequency rate as part of their 2017 Sustainability Report. Shares in Wesfarmers closed 0.28 per cent higher at $42.43.

Bendigo and Adelaide Bank (ASX:BEN) announced plans to raise $300 million through Converting Preference Shares. The bank says its issuing the fully paid, preference shares to ensure it continues to have strong regulatory capital levels, while strengthening its balance sheet growth.

Lithium miner, Kidman Resources’ (ASX:KDR) Mt Holland project, has been granted the status of Level 2 ‘Lead Agency Service’ by the Western Australian Government.

BrainChip (ASX:BRN), the machine learning facial and object detection company, has reached an agreement with seven major stakeholders, to re-escrow 403 million shares. The shares worth about $62.5 million will be re-escrowed over six months.

Best and worst performers 

The best performing sector was Materials adding 1.55 per cent to close at 10,666.
The worst performing sector was REITS, shedding 0.03 per cent to close at 1,324. points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Galaxy Resources (ASX:GXY), rising 7.27 per cent to close at $3.54. Shares in Bega Cheese (ASX:BGA) and Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) also closed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Sirtex Medical LTD (ASX:SRX), dropping 4.3 per cent to close at $14.48. Shares in Flexigroup LTD (ASX:FXL) and GWA Group LTD (ASX:GWA) also closed lower.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $1,303US an ounce.
Light crude is $0.80 up at $51.73US barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 78.73 US cents.

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