Banks take on losses: Aus shares close 0.44% lower

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market has seen a fall today mainly due to losses on big financial stocks. Comm Bank (ASX:CBA) shares fell 2.2 per cent ANZ (ASX:ANZ) and Westpac (ASX:WBC) slid one per cent and NAB (ASX:NAB) closed just below one per cent lower. Brent crude prices continued to advance overnight and through Tuesday, strengthening the energy sector. Base metals lifted over night lifting material stocks with aluminium, copper and nickel all advancing. Iron ore price gained 0.1 per cent to $63.92 a tonne and its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.56 per cent.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 28 points lower, or 0.44 per cent lower to finish at 6258.

On the futures market the Dow futures are suggesting a gain of 47 points up.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 21 point fall.

The value of trades was $5.2 billion on volume of 641 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA) BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP), and Westpac (ASX:WBC).

Local economic news

NAB's monthly business survey shows business conditions stabilised in June and remain above average after a fall the previous month. Retail was the exception with conditions remaining weaker.

Company news 

Litigation funding provider IMF Bentham (ASX:IMF) is funding a representative complaint against Facebook over alleged breaches of the Australian Privacy Principles. They will later determine if it will fund any class action against the Respondents arising from the alleged breaches. Individuals who had a personal Facebook account (used in Australia between 2010 and March 2015) and who received a message from Facebook advising that their information was shared with Cambridge Analytica because they, or one of their Facebook “friends” used the Facebook application “This Is My Digital Life” are eligible to participate in the proposed class action. The complaint is being handled by leading Australian law firm, Johnson Winter & Slattery in Sydney. Shares in IMF Bentham (ASX:IMF) closed 3.04 per cent higher to $2.71.

More headlines

Village Roadshow (ASX:VRL) has today announced the launch of a fully underwritten entitlement offer to raise around $51 million in new fully paid ordinary shares. The media and entertainment business says that the proceeds combined with the sale of Wet’n’Wild Sydney are expected to generate net proceeds of $87 million which will be used to reduce borrowings.

Technology company MGM Wireless (ASX:MWR) has announced the addition of two new features to its market leading all-in-one children’s smartphone, SPACETALK.Parents can now instantly find the location of their kids by simply pressing a button on their linked app, with the new ‘Location on demand’ feature

Aerial mapping firm, Nearmap (ASX:NEA) says results for the 2018 financial year are expected to show record growth with the contract value at the 30th June at $66.2 million, a rise of 41 per cent on a year over year basis. Meantime, the company’s US portfolio has more than doubled with Nearmap’s US operations growing by 143 per cent.

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was materials adding 0.5 per cent while the worst performing sector was utlilities shedding 1.4 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Bellamys (ASX:BAL), rising 9.9 per cent to close at $13.52 Shares in IPH (ASX:IPH) and Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Pendal Group (ASX:PDL), dropping 7.5 per cent to close at $9.56. Shares in NextDC (ASX:NXT) and Vocus Group (ASX:VOC) followed lower.

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.7 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.5 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,256 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.21 up at $US74.01 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 74.58 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has fallen 0.8 per cent to US$6713, Ethereum fell about 3.94 per cent to US$465 and EOS has fallen about 11.9 per cent to US$7.58.