Still eyeing 6,000 milestone: Aus shares close 0.22% lower

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

It has been a subdued start to the week for the Australian share market, with the local bourse dipping into toes into the red, but still eyeing the 6,000 point mark.

Over half of the sectors traded below the line today with real estate trusts and property companies taking the biggest hit, while industrials and materials copped some selling too.

Out of the big miners today, Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) started off on the strongest foot, followed by Forestcue (ASX:FMG) while BHP (ASX:BHP) shares went the other way.

On the banking front, Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA) and Westpac (ASX:WBC) shares underperformed ANZ (ASX:ANZ) shares, even though the NZ bank announced a court settlement, while NAB (ASX:NAB) was the only big four bank to start the week in the green.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 13 points up, or 0.22 per cent lower to finish at 5,8.94

The value of trades was $3.6 billion on volume of 535 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 National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB).

On the futures market the SPI is 14 points lower.

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has added 1.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 0.7 per cent and the Shanghai Composite is pretty much flat.

Company news 

Engineering and infrastructure company, RCR Tomlinson (ASX:RCR) has been awarded a $110 million contract for the 68 megawatt Emerald Solar Farm being developed in Central Queensland. RCR won the contract to provide the engineering, procurement and construction, as well as operation and maintenance. Share in RCR Tomlinson (ASX:RCR) closed 3.98 per cent higher at $4.44.

Australia’s largest online department store, Kogan (ASX:KGN) saw its revenue grow by 36 per cent in the first quarter of the 2018 financial year, while its EBITDA grew about 38 per cent, both compared to the prior corresponding period. The company outperformed all f its budgets and surpassed its milestone of having over 1 million customers. Shares in Kogan (ASX:KGN) closed 5.28 per cent higher at $4.59.

ANZ (ASX:ANZ) and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) have agreed in-principle on the settlement of a bank trading and Bank Bill Swap Rate court matter.

Suncorp (ASX:SUN) is planning is raise $250 million through unsecured and convertible notes.

Santos (ASX:STO) has announced that Peter Coates will become Chairman in February 2018, after Keith Spence to retire

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was Telcos adding 0.8 per cent to close at 1,260
The worst performing sector was Reits, shedding 1.1 per cent to close at 1,328. points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Fairfax Media (ASX: FXJ), rising 3.32 per cent to close at $1.09. Shares in Tassal Group (ASX: TGR) and Macquarie Atlas Roads Group (ASX: MQA) also closed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Western Areas Limited (ASX: WSA), dropping 4.93 per cent to close at $2.89. Shares in HT&E Limited (ASX: HT1) and Reliance Worldwide Corporation Limited (ASX: RWC) also closed lower.

To commodities an d the dollar 

Gold is trading at $US1,277 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.33 up at $US51.84 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 78.25 US cents.

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