Another day of solid gains : ASX closed 0.5% higher

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

It has been a positive day of trade for the Australian share market. Retirement village operator Aveo (ASX:AGO) saw gains as unit sales lifted as did financial technology company Afterpay (ASX:ATP) and Dominos Pizza (ASX:DMP). As for the sectors, healthcare did well but materials continued to slide. Iron ore price fell 0.7 per cent to US$68.02 and its futures are pointing to a rise of per 0.39 per cent. At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 29 points higher or 0.5 per cent up to finish at 6329.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a fall of 45 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a dip of 4 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing fall of 11 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 38 point rise tomorrow.

Value of trades

$6.1 billion on volume of 674 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA), CSL (ASX:CSL), ANZ (ASX:ANZ).

Local economic news

Wages rose 0.6 per cent in the June quarter and are up 2.1 per cent over the year which is in line with consensus.

Company news

Mining company Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) today posted their financial results for the full year to 30 June 2018 and show a 35 per cent hike in net profit after tax to $272 million from FY17 earnings. Revenue saw a 16 per cent increase on last year to $1.71 billion. And a 9 per cent increase in normalised EBITDA to $507 million on full year 2017 in line with financial guidance. The company declared a fully franked final dividend of 40 cents per share, bringing the total dividend for the year to 65.0 cents per share. Throughout the year some of their operational highlights include the sale of 3.5 million tonnes of lithium direct ship ore. Shares in Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) closed 1.06 per cent lower $14.97.

Fairfax (ASX:FXJ) has reported net loss after tax of $63.8 million for the 2018 financial year. Group revenue decreased 2.8 per cent on FY17 to $1.7 billion. The results mark the last full year accounts for the company under the Fairfax name after a merger with Nine was announced last month. The merger is still subject to regulatory approvals.

Wesfarmers (ASX:WES) has reported its net profit after tax (NPAT) fell about 58.3 per cent on FY17 to $1.197 billion for the 2018 financial year. Its revenue strengthened over the 2018 financial year, and lifted almost 3 per cent on FY17 to $66.9 billion. The Perth based conglomerate says the reported profit includes a loss from discontinued operations of around $1.4 billion which reflects the trading results and significant items for Bunnings UK and Ireland.

Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) has reported its net profit after tax (NPAT) rose about 6 per cent to $541 million for the half year to June 30, when compared to the prior corresponding period. In more good news for the mining company, its revenue strengthened over the half year, and lifted 27 per cent on the same time last year to $2.39 billion.

Seek (ASX:SEK) has reported its net profit after tax (NPAT) dropped about 84 per cent on FY17 to $53.2million for the 2018 financial year. Sales revenue was up 25 per cent to $1.29 billion. The net profit slump was largely caused by non-cash write downs in its Latin American businesses.

Best and worst performers 

The best performing sector was healthcare adding 4.6 per cent while the worst performing sector was materials shedding 0.9 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Afterpay Touch Group (ASX:APT), rising 8.5 per cent to close at $16.39. Shares in Aveo Group (ASX:AOG) and CSL (ASX:CSL) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Pact Group Holdings (ASX:PGH), dropping 21.9 per cent to close at $4.17. Shares in Insurance Australia Group (ASX:IAG) and St Barbara (ASX:SBM) followed lower.

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has lost 0.7 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 2.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 1.64 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,188 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.64 up at $US65.93 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.18 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Some of the most traded cryptocurrencies are trading higher: Bitcoin has gained 5 per cent to US$6325, Ethereum has gained 5.8 per cent to US$262 and EOS has gained about 6.8 per cent to US$4.65, in the last 24 hours.