Small rally due to trade talks: ASX closes 0.7% higher

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

It has been a positive day of trade for the Australian share market. Shares closed higher for a second day. The rally is being attributed to the US and China hopefully moving forward with their trade talks. As for the sectors, Telco services managed to stay on top with materials gaining but ending up bottom of the pile. At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 39 points higher, or 0.7 per cent higher to finish at 5,722.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 113 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 12 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing lift of 31 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 41 point rise tomorrow morning

Economic news

Australia's trade surplus dropped 4.4 per cent to $1.93 billion in November. The nation's balance on goods and services decreased $88 million in November, down from October's revised $2.01 billion, according to seasonally adjusted data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Company news

Pioneer Credit (ASX:PNC) has entered the Utility Purchased Debt Portfolio market through the acquisition of a portfolio of small and medium-sized enterprise (SME). They are looking at 120 day past due customer accounts. Their focus on SME customer accounts is after significant due diligence. They believe the SME customer accounts are substantially similar to those we have acquired from traditional vendor partners. Shares in Pioneer Credit (ASX:PNC) closed 4.88 per cent higher at $3.01.

Waste manager, Bingo Industries (ASX:BIN) has offered to divest its eastern Sydney waste processing plant to address anti-competition concerns related to its planned acquisition of Dial A Dump. The ACCC in November raised concerns the deal could have negative impacts on the market for waste. The $578 million takeover could make Bingo the biggest waste collector in Sydney.

Financial advice platform, HUB 24 (ASX:HUB) has hit a new funds under administration (FUA) milestone of $10 billion as at 31 December 2018. The company says despite challenging financial markets, its market-leading platform has continued to grow.

The a2 Milk company (ASX:A2M) has expanded its leadership team, with the creation of Chief Commercial Officer and Chief Technical Officer positions. Melanie Kansil has been appointed to the CCO role and Phil Rybinski has been appointed as Chief Technical Officer.

Best and worst performers 

The best performing sector was Telco Services, adding 1.5 per cent, while the sector with the fewest gains was Materials, adding 0.1 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Mayne Pharma Group (ASX:MYX), rising 8.23 per cent to close at $0.85. Shares in Bingo Industries (ASX:BIN) and Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG), dropping 5 per cent to close at $1.14. Shares in St Barbara (ASX:SBM) and Saracen Mineral Holdings (ASX:SAR) followed lower.

Asian markets

Mixed.Japan’s Nikkei has added 1.4 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.3 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.2 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,283 an ounce.
Iron ore price gained 0.6 per cent to $73.51 a tonne, and its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.9 per cent
Light crude is $0.81 up at $US48.77 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 71.29 US cents.