Oil drags ASX lower, US futures in red: Aus shares close 1.1% lower

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market has continued to trade lower for the second day this week with all sectors trading lower and Energy leading the drag, down over 3 per cent, after the oil price dropped below US$70.00 as Saudis are pledging to boost output. We saw a lot of sectors follow with Utilities, Telcos, Financials, Healthcare and Materials losing 1 per cent or more. And in the afternoon, both Consumer Discretionary and tech sectors, fell into the red.

Broker moves

WorleyParsons (ASX:WOR) had their buy rating reiterated by Citi given the US$3.3 billion acquisition of Jacobs ECR which diversifies its business and geographical exposure. Citi’s target for WOR, $20.70, while it last traded at $17.84

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 1.1 per cent lower or 62 points down, at 5,843 points.

Futures market

US futures are lower:
Dow futures are suggesting a fall of 192 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a dip of 23 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing fall of 65 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 32 point fall tomorrow/Monday morning

Company news

Washington H Soul Pattinson & Company (ASX:SOL) released its annual shareholder report, reiterating its highest ever regular profit of $331 million, while its profit after tax attributable to shareholders fell 20 per cent to $267 million. It did, however rise its interim and final dividend paying a total dividend of 56 cents, a rise of 4 per cent compared to 2017. Its profit after tax was impacted by New Hope’s impairment of an undeveloped exploration project in Queensland. WHSP owns 50 per cent of New Hope. WHSP shares are trading at all-time highs, but today its shares fell 5.2 per cent higher at $28.40

Australia's second largest private hospital operator, Healthscope (ASX:HSO) gained 19 per cent today after receiving a second takeover offer for $4.1 billion for $2.36 cash per share from the BGH - AustralianSuper Consortium after Healtscope rejected the first offer on 22 May 2018. The board says it’s assessing the offer.

Gold producer Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) shares fell 11.3 per cent seeing it claim one of the top 200’s worst performing posts, despite the company maintaining its FY19 production guidance of 300,000 ounces, while it's reaffirming its all-in-sustaining costs. It will kick off sub-level production in December 2018 and implement full automation, as it ramps up to steady state production in June 2019.

Oil and gas major in Papua New Guinea, Oil Search (ASX:OSH) shares fell over 4 per cent after advising it saw its total production rise 39 per cent in the September quarter, and its revenue climb 81 per cent to US$474.9 million, its highest quarterly revenue since the fourth quarter of 2014.

Real estate group Mirvac Group (ASX:MGR) shares lost 0.2 per cent after it advised its retail and industrial property portfolios are tracking as expected in Q1 of FY19 and it’s reaffirming its operating EPS guidance of between 16.8 to 17.1 cents per share in FY19, which is a rise of 2-4 per cent compared to the prior period.

IPOs

Metallurgical coal producer, Coronado Global Resources Inc. (ASX:CRN) started trading today. It floated with an issue price of $4.40, opened at $3.80 and closing ta $3.60.

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was S&P/ASX Consumer Discretionary losing 0.1 per cent while the worst performing sector was S&P/ASX Energy, shedding 3.2 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Healthscope (ASX:HSO), rising 19.3 per cent to close at $2.13. Shares in Bellamy's Australia (ASX:BAL) and Aveo Group (ASX:AOG) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG), dropping 11.3 per cent to close at $1.02. Shares in Seven West Media (ASX:SWM) and Washington H Soul Pattinson & Company (ASX:SOL) followed lower.

Asian markets

Lower: Japan’s Nikkei has lost 2.4 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 2 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 1.4 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,225 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 0.7 per cent to US$73.80 and its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.6 per cent.
Light crude is US$0.24 up at US$69.52 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 70.65 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has fallen 0.1 per cent to US$6,587, Ethereum has fallen 0.4 per cent to US$204 and EOS has fallen about 0.4 per cent to US$5.41, in the last 24 hours.