Market Wrap: ASX starts week 0.3% higher

Market Reports

The Australian share market lifted at open and spent the day in positive territory, pulling back from the morning’s highs to start the week 0.3 higher. Most sectors closed stronger, with health and mining sectors leading the pack.

The S&P/ASX 200 index lifted 15 points to finish at 4,291. On the futures market, the SPI is 27 points higher.

Company news

Gunns Limited (ASX:GNS) says the Richard Chandler Corporation abandoned a proposed $150 million investment in the company due to social concerns. The Tasmanian timber company is now working with financial advisers to develop an alternative equity offer. Gunns has also advised that it has completed the first stage of the sale of the Gunns Green Triangle forest estate. Shares in Gunns are expected to remain in a trading halt for at least one more week, and last traded at $0.16.

Shares in Ten Network Holdings Limited (ASX:TEN) rose after the media company revealed it is considering the possible sale of its outdoor advertising business, EYE Corp. Ten says in light of recent corporate activities within the Australian out-of-home industry it is currently undertaking a strategic review of EYE and considering strategic options. Shares in Ten Network Holdings rose 2.44 per cent today, closing at $0.84.

Chemical supplier Nufarm Limited (ASX:NUF) has expanded its alliance with Sumitomo Chemical Company that will see new distribution deals between the two companies for Canada and Europe.

Coal company Cockatoo Coal Limited (ASX:COK) has finalised the sale of a 49 per cent stake in its Woori project for $37.25 million to Japan’s Mitsui Coal.

Insurance Australia Group Limited (ASX:IAG) has announced the offer of new convertible preference shares to raise about $350 million for general corporate purposes.

Department store retailer David Jones Limited (ASX:DJS) has placed its shares in a trading halt, it says to consider the company’s strategic plan ahead of its first half results due this Wednesday.

Best and worst performers

Most sectors rallied: The best performing sector was Health Care, adding 83 points to close at 8,344.
The worst performing sector was Telco Services, losing 10 points to close at 1,110 points.

The best performing stock in the S&PASX 200 was Energy World Corporation Limited (ASX:EWC), rising 8.67 per cent to close at $0.815. Shares in Aquarius Platinum Limited (ASX:AQP) and Karoon Gas Australia Limited (ASX:KAR) also closed higher.

The worst performing stock was Envestra Limited (ASX:ENV), dropping 5 per cent to close at $0.76. Shares in Kingsgate Consolidated Limited (ASX:KCN) and Telecom Corporation of New Zealand (ASX:TEL also closed lower.

Commodities

Gold is trading at $US1,663 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.32 higher at $US107.38 a barrel.

The Australian dollar

The Australian dollar is buying $US1.0604.