RBA to hold rates for 25th time: Aus shares race 0.7% up at noon

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market has re-entered positive territory with most sectors galloping ahead, with the local bourse recouping its losses from yesterday. Energy, Staples, Property and Materials are leading the rally, ahead of the RBA meeting today, with rates tipped to remain on hold for 25th time. 

From the get-go, we had mostly positive Wall Street leads with the S&P 500 up 0.6 per cent and the Dow Jones up 0.8 per cent, after Berkshire Hathaway's Class B shares gained 4.7 per cent after Warren Buffet’s company completed a buyback.

Broker moves

Cochlear (ASX:COH) has been marked as a buy by Citi. It's trading 0.4 per cent higher.

Westpac (ASX:WBC) had its hold recommendation reinterred by Bell Potter with a price target of $28.50 (12-month target), upping its price target from $28.30. Westpac is trading 0.8 per cent higher.

The S&P/ASX 200 index 

0.7 per cent or 39 points higher at 5,857. On the futures market the SPI is 17 points higher.

Company news

Yellowtail kingfish breeder and producer, Clean Seas Seafood (ASX:CSS) has reported a 7 per cent rise in fresh sales in the first quarter of FY19, compared to the same time last year. Clean Seas Seafood (ASX:CSS) are trading 1.8 per cent higher at $0.06.

Spark New Zealand (ASX:SPK) has pleaded guilty to two historical billing and operational issues that were brought forth by the New Zealand Commerce Commission. Penalties will be determined in due course, but it’s not expected to have a significant effect on Spark’s financial position and it’s not changed its FY19 guidance. Spark New Zealand (ASX:SPK) shares are trading 1.5 per cent higher at $3.73 at noon.

Centuria Capital (ASX:CNI) has increased its interest in its metropolitan REIT, Centuria Metropolitan REIT (ASX:CMA) from about 22 per cent [21.55 per cent] to about 25 per cent [24.93 per cent]. It comes as Centuria Capital closed the biggest equity raise in the property market this year, a $279 million capital raise. And Centuria took up its rights and sub-underwrote the retail component in that raise. CNI also undertook a $100 million equity raise to maintain its co-investment interests in Centuria Metropolitan REIT (ASX:CMA). Shares in Centuria Capital (ASX:CNI) last traded at $1.30 but it has seen a healthy rally since 2012.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is S&P/ASX Energy adding 1.6 per cent, while the worst performing sector is S&P/ASX Health Care, shedding 0.4 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Incitec Pivot Limited (ASX:IPL), rising 4.9 per cent to $4.21, followed by shares in Bellamy's Australia Limited (ASX:BAL) and Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Seven West Media Limited (ASX:SWM).
dropping over 3.3 per cent at $0.74, followed by shares in Appen (ASX:APX) and Bingo Industries Limited (ASX:BIN).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,231 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 2.4 per cent to US$75.74 and its futures are pointing to a rise of 1.2 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.14 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has gained 0.5 per cent to US$6,432, Ethereum has gained 0.6 per cent to US$209 and Bitcoin Cash has gained 0.5 per cent to US$555, in the last 24 hours.