New 10-year high: Aus shares 0.2% higher at noon

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market hit a new 10-year high today after making gains for the fifth straight session. Most sectors are seeing gains today but it's a merger that’s propped up the market today. After TPG Telecom (ASX:TPM) rose over 16 per cent, leaving Telcos with a gain of over 3 per cent at noon. The only sectors that are seeing minor selling today include financials after Platinum Asset Management (ASX:PTM) fell over 4 per cent after reporting its attributable profit rose 1.7 per cent. While Staples are trading down the most at noon.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 11 points or 0.2 per cent higher at 6,364. On the futures market, the SPI is 2 points higher.

Economic news

Building permits/approvals fell 5.2 per cent (seasonally adjusted terms), worse than the expected 2.5 per cent dip for July.

Private capital spending (business investment) fell 2.5 per cent, while the market was expecting a rise of 0.6 per cent for the June quarter. Another reason we are seeing a slight bit of selling in the market. 

Company news

TPG Telecom Limited (ASX:TPM) and Vodafone Hutchison Australia (ASX:HTA) have agreed to a merger of equals to creating a $15 billion leading full-service telco provider. The new merged group, TPG Telecom will have revenue of $6 billion, and EBITDA of $1.9 billion and will have the strength to compete with Telstra (ASX:TLS) and Optus. TPG shareholders will own 49.1 per cent of the new group and VHA shareholders will own 50.1 per cent. The merger has unanimously been recommended by TPG. Shares in TPG Telecom Limited (ASX:TPM) are trading 16.4 per cent higher at noon at $9.17, while Vodafone Hutchison Australia (ASX:HTA) are trading 56 per cent higher at $0.20.

Another star performer today, copper-gold producer, Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR) after it reported its net profit after tax rose 60 per cent in the 2018 financial year to $123 million, while its saw record revenue of $607 million, a rise of 14 per cent compared to the same time last year. It comes as it had bolstered production, lower costs and a higher copper price. It also declared a final dividend of 19 cents per share, higher than last year. Shares in Sandfire (ASX:SFR) are trading 6.2 per cent higher at $7.57.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is Telcos adding 3.5 per cent. Worse performing sector is Consumer Staples, shedding 0.2 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is TPG (ASX:TPM), trading 16.4 per cent higher at noon at $9.17 followed by shares in Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR) and Boral (ASX:BLD).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Ramsay Health Care (ASX:RHC), dropping 5.4 per cent to $55.00, followed by shares in Platinum Asset Management (ASX:PTM) and Atlas Arteria (ASX:ALX).

Asian markets

Higher: Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.3 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has fallen slightly, 0.1 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,206 an ounce.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a fall of 1.2 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.89 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has lost 0.2 per cent to US$7,050, Ethereum has lost 1.8 per cent to US$289 and EOS has gained 6.1 per cent to US$6.21, in the last 24 hours.