The Australian share market popped higher at the open after Ford reported better than expected earnings while Twitter and Nike shares rose too.
Most of our market is in positive territory, with all sectors pushing up, eyeing that 6,000 mark again. But we are seeing a bit of yo-yo action, with industrials dragging the chain after Qantas (ASX:QAN) addressed shareholders, noting conditions are expected to get tougher in the second half, on the back of higher fuel costs.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 2 points up, tracking 0.03 per cent up at 5,918 at noon.
On the futures market the SPI is 4 points higher.
To local economic news out today
Producer prices rose 0.2 per cent in September quarter, missing the 0.6 per cent rise expected. Despite it missing the mark, the most growth came from price rises in Electricity, gas and water supply
One of the world’s biggest dairy processors, Saputo, has inked a deal to buy Murray Goulburn Co-operative Co (ASX:MGC) operating assets and liabilities for $1.31 billion. The deal also involves MG’s milk supply commitments worth $114 million. The total transaction represents a premium of 76-84 per cent, as the deal values each share at $1.10 to $1.15. An initial distribution of 75 cents per share will be paid after the deal is completed, in the first half of next year. The purchase not only adds value to the business, but rewards loyal suppliers with milk supply commitments. The purchase is subject to shareholder and government approvals. Shares in Murray Goulburn (ASX:MGC) are trading 3.61 per cent higher at $0.86.
A company which treats sleep apnea, ResMed (ASX:RMD) reported an uptick in quarterly gross profit while its revenue rose 13 per cent in the first quarter of FY18 to $523.7 million. It also saw bolstered cash flows from operations to $94 million. Shares in ResMed (ASX:RMD) are trading 6.11 per cent higher at $10.77.
And the artificial intelligence, machine and objection detection company, company BrainChip Holdings (ASX:BRN) which announced a major European car maker deal just this week, has now gone into a trading halt. BrainChip entered the halt pending an announcement about a capital raising.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is energy, gaining 0.73 per cent to 9,697. Shares in Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) have risen 1.81 per cent and trading at $3.67. Shares in Oil Search (ASX:OSH) and Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) are also stronger.
The worst performing sector is industrials, falling 0.37 per cent to 5,831. Shares in Qantas Airways (ASX:QAN) have fallen 4.2 per cent, trading at $6.04. Shares in Cleanaway Waste Management (ASX:CWY) and Reliance Worldwide Corporation (ASX:RWC) are also lower.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,267 an ounce and one Australian dollar is buying 76.45 US cents.