Orocobre extension approved, ASIC to govern Afterpay: Aus shares finish 0.1% lower Wednesday

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market closed flat on Wednesday. Despite starting the session in the black on the back of positive Wall Street leads, the local bourse quickly entered selling territory again with selling in Materials, Consumer Discretionary and Energy capping gains.

If we look at the chart the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 3 points lower, or 0.1 per cent lower to finish at 5,725, taking the market back to where it sat last Monday. That’s 10 per cent [646 points] off our 10-year high that the ASX200 hit on 30 August 2018.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 45 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 3 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing lift of 14 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 6 point fall tomorrow morning

Most traded stocks

Top three stocks by value were National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB), BHP Billiton Limited (ASX:BHP) and Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO).

Company news

Orocobre (ASX:ORE) has been given final investment decision (FID) approval to expand its Olaroz lithium facility in Argentina. It comes as Toyota Tsusho Corporation and JV boards granted approval for Orocobre stage 2 expansion, which will increase ORE’s lithium carbonate production by 25,000 tonnes per annum, taking its total production capacity to 42,000 tpa. Construction has already kicked off. Stage 1 of the plant will also migrate to 100 per cent battery grade lithium carbonate production. Shares in Orocobre (ASX:ORE) closed flat at $4.10.

Media company oOh!Media, (ASX:OML) has confirmed that Brisbane City Council has voted to approve a 10-year contract with street furniture business Adshel, which oOh!Media, purchased in September.

Building product company CSR (ASX:CSR) inked a deal to sell its Viridian Glass business for $155 million, to Crescent Capital Partners. The transaction is booked to be completed on 31 January 2019, with CSR to realise a pre-tax loss of $20-$30 million in the financial year ending 31 March 209.

Buy now, pay-later company Afterpay Touch Group (ASX:APT) advised it has low defaults with its FY18 loss being 44 per cent lower than other its competitors and 79 per cent less than consumer leasing finance providers. It comes at a time when the company has been under pressure and Australian Securities and Investments Commission has been reviewing the industry for the past 10 months, and today the body, ASIC, revealed it will extend its product intervention powers to regulate the industry.

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was REITs, adding 0.5 per cent, while the worst performing sector was Materials, shedding 0.7 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Ooh!Media (ASX:OML), rising 6.7 per cent to close at $4.45. Shares in Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) and Xero (ASX:XRO) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Saracen Mineral Holdings (ASX:SAR), dropping 7 per cent to close at $2.38. Shares in Ausdrill (ASX:ASL) and Seven West Media (ASX:SWM) followed lower.

Asian markets

Higher: Japan’s Nikkei has added 1.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.9 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.8 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,215 an ounce.
Iron ore is trading 1.5 per cent higher at $65.19 a tonne. Its future are pointing to a rise of 1.1 per cent.
Light crude is $0.46 up at $US52.09 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.33 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has gained 7.6 per cent to US$4,050, Ethereum has gained 7.9 per cent to US$115 and EOS has gained 1.9 per cent to US$3.19, in the last 24 hours.


 

Jessica Amir

Finance News Network
Jessica joined FNN in January 2017 with a passion for equities and funds management. As Head of News, she has been a broadcast journalist for over seven years, specialising in finance. She has been a journalist with Sky News Business, ABC 1, ABC's The Business and ABC24. She’s also worked as a TV reporter for regional Channel 7 and 9. She also previously worked as a financial planner and real estate agent.