Great gains for energy: ASX shares 0.1% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market opened lower despite positive leads from Wall Street and is now tracking 0.1 per cent lower at noon. The energy sector is leading the way and the telcos sector trailing behind. The Iron ore price rose 1.7 per cent to $66.62 cents and its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.1 per cent. BHP (ASX:BHP), Rio (ASX:RIO),Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) , Santos (ASX:STO), Origin Energy (ASX:ORG) and Oil Search (ASX:OSH) are all among the market leaders.

Industrial metal prices mostly fell as investors continue to monitor the China-US trade tensions and how that will impact global trade and economic growth. Gold prices fell to the lowest level in 6 months influenced by the threat of rising US interest rates and support for the American dollar. Brent lifted around 2 per cent on pressure from the US to its allies to halt imports of oil from sanctioned countries. Meabwhile, Saudi Arabia plans to pump 11mbpd of oil in July, which would be a record high according to reports.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 6 points down at 6191 thats 0.1 per cent drop. On the futures market the SPI is 9 points lower.

Local economic news

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released the March quarter figures for ABS Engineering Construction Activity. The trend estimate for the value of total engineering construction work done rose 3.7 per cent in the March 2018 quarter. The seasonally adjusted estimate for the value of total engineering construction work done rose 2.8% in the March quarter to almost $24 billion.The value of work commenced in the March quarter was over $29 billion in original terms, an increase of 66.2 per cent from the December quarter.

Company news

Infection prevention company Nanosonics (ASX:NAN) is celebrating today as trophon2 passed European union requirements. The trophon2 device is the second generation of the trophon system which prevents ultrasound probe cross-infection from occurring. Nanosonics says trophon device is easy to install, set-up and maintain, all it needs is to be plugged in. Nanosonics now expects that trophon2 will be launched in Europe, the USA and Canada in the first quarter of the 2019 financial year. Shares in Nanosonics (ASX:NAN) up 0.6 per cent at $3.32

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is Energy adding 1.2 per cent to 11871 points while the worst performing sector is telcos, shedding 1.7 per cent to 981 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Wisetech Global (ASX:WTC), rising 3.7 per cent to $16.93, followed by shares in Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) and Australian Pharmaceutical Industries (ASX:API).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Ooh! Media (ASX:OML), dropping 6.5 per cent to $4.79, followed by shares in Aurizon Holdings (ASX:AZJ) and Credit Corp Group (ASX:CCP).

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has lost 0.6 per cent,
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 0.4 per cent 
Shanghai Composite has lost 0.1 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,255 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 73.69 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Some of the most traded cryptocurrencies are trading lower.
Bitcoin has fallen 2.3 per cent to US$6094,
Ethereum fallen about 5.29 per cent to US$433 
Ripple has fallen about 4.4 per cent to US$0.45