Australian shares look set to open flat today despite Wall Street trading slightly higher over night. The Dow Jones extended its rally to eight straight days, with the energy and healthcare sectors the top performers. Investors are optimistic trade tensions between the US and China may ease ahead of the second round of trade talks between the countries this week.
Oil pushed higher as the Gaza Strip erupted over the U.S.’s moving of its embassy to Jerusalem.
Local Economic news
Today we can expect lending finance data from the ABS and the tourist arrivals and departures for March.
Wall Street closed higher yesterday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.3 per cent to close at 24,899, the S&P 500 closed 0.1 per cent higher at 2,730 and the NASDAQ gained 0.1 per cent to close at 7411.
European markets closed lower yesterday: London’s FTSE ended 0.2 per cent lower, Paris lost 0.02 per cent and Frankfurt fell 0.2 per cent.
And Asian markets were higher: Tokyo’s Nikkei closed 0.5 per cent higher, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1.4 per cent, and China’s Shanghai Composite added 0.3 per cent.
The ASX futures are flat. Yesterday, the Australian share market closed higher with the S&P/ASX 200 Index closing 19 points higher to 6135.
Plumbing and bathroom supply company Reece (ASX:REH) has opened its retail entitlement offer to eligible investors. The company is hoping to raise $560 million in equity to fund the take over of US plumbing business MORSCO. The offer will close tomorrow at 5 pm Shares in Reece (ASX:REH) closed 0.4 per cent higher at $12.10 yesteday.
A number of companies are going ex-dividend today:
National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB) is paying 99 cents fully franked and Life Healthcare Group is paying 18 cents also fully franked.
One Australian Dollar at 7:40AM was buying US75.27 cents, 55.56 Pence Sterling, 82.56 Yen and 63.11 Euro cents.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 1.4 per cent gain.
Gold has dropped $7.50 to $US1313 an ounce.
Silver has lost 22c to $US16.53 an ounce.
Oil has gained 52c to $US71.20 a barrel.
The three most traded cryptocurrencies are trading mixed: Bitcoin has gained 1.5 per cent to US$8856, Ethereum has risen 0.7 per cent to US$741 and EOS has dropped 4.2 per cent to US$14.49.