ASX dives deeper into red on hail damage: Aus shares close 0.7% lower

Market Reports

by Jessica Amir

The Australian share market missed its Santa rally this year, hitting new two-year lows today and diving deeper into the red throughout the session with the majority of the sectors ending with a loss.

IAG (ASX:IAG) and Suncorp (ASX:SUN) ended with a loss of about 4 per cent in the wake of yesterday’s hail storms, while the sectors with the biggest losses today were Telcos and Property.

Meanwhile, the mining sector rebound today, with the gold price trading near six-month highs.

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 0.7 per cent or 38 points lower. Over the week we lost 2.5 per cent/134 points, finishing at 5,468. We are now 14 per cent away from the 10-year highs that we hit on late August.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a fall of 33 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a dip of 6 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing fall of 23 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 61 point fall Monday morning

Company news

Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) has strengthened its Australian dollar gold hedge book and forward sold 30,000 ounces of gold at $1,783 per ounce. Shares in Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) closed 6.4 per cent higher at $1.17.

Canadian investment management company, Brookfield says it’s willing and able to proceed with the sweetened takeover proposed of Healthscope (ASX:HSO) at a total value $4.49 billion (at $2.585 per share). Meanwhile, underbidder, the BGH Australian Super Consortium says it will be conducting due diligence immediately on its non-binding proposal to takeover Healthscope, at a takeover price of $2.36 per share. Healthscope (ASX:HSO) shares gained 5.8 per cent.

Insurance Australia Group (ASX:IAG) shares fell 4.3 per cent today, after announcing the scale of the anticipated claims due to storms in Sydney yesterday will be in line about $169 million. By 10 am on 21 December 2018 IAG received more than 6,500 claims from the Sydney hailstorm, and this is expected to rise significantly over coming days.

Bubs Australia Limited (ASX:BUB) shares gained 3.4 per cent after it secured additional goat milk supply volume, that will guarantee a minimum supply volume of 2.2 million litres through to May 2019. It comes after it inked an additional supply agreement with Central Dairy Goats Limited.

Best and worst performers of the day

The best performing sector was Materials adding 1 per cent while the worst performing sector was Telcos shedding 3.7 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Resolute Mining Limited (ASX:RSG), rising 6.4 per cent to close at $1.17. Shares in Healthscope (ASX:HSO) and Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Orocobre Limited (ASX:ORE), dropping 10.98 per cent to close at $3.00. Shares in Pilbara Minerals Limited (ASX:PLS) and Vocus Group Limited (ASX:VOC) followed lower.

Asian markets

Lower:Japan’s Nikkei has lost 1.6 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 0.2 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 1 per cent.

Wall Street

Wrapped up the four trading days this week lower: The Dow Jones lost 5.4 per cent, The S&P 500 lost 5.4 per cent and the tech heavy Nasdaq lost 5.9 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,260 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 4.5 per cent to US$72.26 and its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.9 per cent.
Light crude is $1.95 lower at $US46.22 barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 71.08 US cents.