Australian shares are set to open flat today following a lacklustre session in the US on Friday. After reporting strong results, tech giants including Microsoft, Intel and Amazon had a tough time holding on to all their gains with the Nasdaq closing the day flat. At its high of the day, the S&P 500 IT Sector was up 1 percent, but by midday it dropped into the red before closing slightly higher. According to Bloomberg, It’s a pattern that’s plagued this earnings season: Even though companies are beating earnings predictions at the fastest rate ever, stocks have remained relatively flat.
Oil prices edged lower on Friday, while safe haven gold is tracking higher.
In US economic news, the U.S. economy grew by 2.3 percent in the first quarter. Economists polled by Reuters expected a gain of 2 percent.
Australian economic news
Today the Reserve Bank issues the March Financial Aggregates publication. Private sector credit rose by 0.4 per cent in February up 0.1 per cent on January. Annual credit growth held at a 3½-year low of 4.9 per cent. We can also look out for the quarterly State of the States report from CommSec. This report tracks the economic performance of the states and territories.
On Tuesday data on home prices, the weekly Roy Morgan-ANZ consumer sentiment survey and surveys on the manufacturing sector are all released.
Also tomorrow the Reserve Bank Board meets but no change in the monetary policy stance is expected. Commsec says interest rates are firmly on hold until the year-end due to retail deflation and modest wages growth.
On Thursday we can look out for international trade data for March. A healthy $825M surplus was recorded in Feb continuing a solid run of results since late 2016.
Wall Street closed mixed on Friday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.1 per cent to close at 24,311, the S&P 500 gained 0.1 per cent to close at 2,670 and the NASDAQ closed almost flat, up 0.02 per cent to close at 7120.
European markets closed higher on Friday: London’s FTSE gained 1.1 per cent, Paris rose 0.5 per cent higher and Frankfurt advanced 0.6 per cent.
Asian markets closed also higher: Tokyo’s Nikkei gained 0.7 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.9 per cent, and China’s Shanghai Composite was up 0.2 per cent.
The ASX futures are pointing to a flat start. On Friday, the Australian share market closed higher with the S&P/ASX 200 Index closing 43 points higher at 5954.
MYOB (ASX:MYO) has inked a deal with rent.com.au (ASX:RNT) which will give the rental website access to MYOB’s RentPay system and customer base. RentPay has more than 6000 renters using the system to pay their rent through a number of payment methods . The deal will bring in $425 thousand for MYOB. RentPay has made an initial payment of $225 thousand to with the remaining $200 to be paid on completion. Shares in MYOB Group (ASX:MYO) closed 0.6 per cent higher to $3.24 on Friday.
MCP Master Income (ASX:MXT) is paying 0.78 cents unfranked and Premier Investments (ASX:PMV) is paying 29 cents fully franked
One Australian Dollar at 7:45AM was buying US75.79 cents, 55.02 Pence Sterling, 82.67 Yen and 62.50 Euro cents.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 1.2 per cent fall.
Gold has gained $5.50 to $US1323 an ounce.
Silver has fallen 7c to $US16.50 an ounce.
Oil has dropped $0.09 to $US68.10 a barrel.
The three most traded cryptocurrencies are trading mixed: Bitcoin has added 0.1 per cent to US$9352, EOS gained 7.8 per cent to US$20.57 and Ethereum has lost 0.4 per cent to US$680.73