Banks pushed today's rally: ASX closed 0.1% lower

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market has seen an impressive rally throughout the day as it rose on the major banks but still closed lower. Westpac (ASX:WBC) and Comm Bank (ASX:CBA) closed the week higher. The financial sector recorded its best result in four weeks. Healthcare performed poorly for the sectors whereas Utilities did well. Galaxy Resources (ASX:GXY), rose over 6 per cent. At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 3 points lower, or 0.1 per cent lower to finish at 5,940. Over the week we have gained 44 points or 0.7 per cent.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 49 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 8 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing lift of 36 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 7 point fall Monday morning

Broker moves

Bell Potter maintain Galaxy's (ASX:GXY) Buy/High Risk recommendation at A$4.30/share target price (previously A$4.50).

Company news

Tilt Renewables (ASX:TLT) has revised its underlying EBITDAF guidance for the year to 31 March 2019 from a range of A$120 – A$127 million to a new range of A$134 - A$138 million. The reason for the change follows strong wind production across its portfolio for the first half of the year which is 6 per cent ahead of the long-term expectations for the portfolio and 23 per cent higher than the corresponding period last year.  Shares in Tilt Renewables (ASX:TLT) last traded at $2.01

Medical wholesaler EBOS (ASX:EBO) is set to acquire all minority shares in the Terry White Group. If implemented, Terry White will become a 100 per cent owned subsidiary of EBOS. EBOS, through its wholly owned subsidiary EBOS PH, currently holds just over 50 per cent of the shares in Terry White.

Mount Gibson Iron (ASX:MGX) has appointed two new senior management personnel following the recent move of former Chief Financial Officer Peter Kerr as Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Gillian Dobson will move to the role of Chief Financial Officer and Scott de Kruijff will take on the role of Chief Operating Officer.

Meridian Energy (ASX:MEZ) held their AGM today. They noted first half saw significant hydrology challenges, EBITDAF in the first half of 2018 was 7 per cent down on the prior year; however, for the full year, there was a 1.4 per cent rise. The second half of the year saw the weather help the company favourably manage their water resources. Total dividends paid to shareholders during the 2018 financial year were also 1.9 per cent higher than the previous year.

Austal (ASX:ASB) today announced Austal USA has been awarded an order worth almost $50 million US dollars to fund materials for the construction of a high speed catamaran to deploy troops. This will be the thirteenth vessel ordered by the US Navy from Austal. They were awarded the initial contract to design and build the first 103-metre vessel in November 2008.

IPOs

Vanadium and oil shale company QEM (ASX:QEM) started trading today. They floated with an issue price of $0.20, opened at $0.21 and its trading at $0.18 and a half. Stay tuned to watch our interview with the QEM’s Executive Director, David Fitch and its Chief Geologist and General Manager, Scott Drelincourt.

Best and worst performers 

The best performing sector was Utilities adding 0.7 per cent while the worst performing sector was Healthcare, shedding 0.7 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Galaxy Resources (ASX:GXY), rising 6.4 per cent to close at $2.34. Shares in Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) and Saracen Mineral Holdings (ASX:SAR) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Emeco (ASX:EHL), dropping 5.4 per cent to close at $0.35. Shares in Treasury Wine Estates (ASX:TWE) and Seven Group Holdings (ASX:SVW) followed lower.

Asian markets

Mixed: Japan’s Nikkei has lost 1.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 0.4 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.03 per cent.

Wall Street

Wrapped up our four trading days this week mixed: The Dow Jones added 0.2 per cent, The S&P 500 added 0.1 per cent and the tech heavy Nasdaq lost 0.2 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,228 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 0.3 per cent to US$73.58. Its futures are pointing to a fall of 1.3 per cent.
Light crude is US$0.99 lower at US$68.71 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 71.10 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Some of the most traded cryptocurrencies are trading lower: Bitcoin has fallen 0.1 per cent to US$6,478, Ethereum has fallen 2.2 per cent to US$203 and XRP has fallen about 3.3 per cent to US$0.46, in the last 24 hours.