Australian shares are expected to open higher this morning as investors await the start of the US reporting season. On Wall Street on Friday stocks ended slightly lower, snapping their recent rally. The ongoing US shutdown and worries about an economic slowdown in China pushed shares slightly lower. But, The Dow Jones and the S&P 500 both rose more than 2 per cent for the week. Oil prices fell on Friday, snapping a 9-day winning streak. Gold edged higher as U.S. stocks slipped and expectations rose that the U.S. Federal Reserve might halt its monetary policy tightening cycle.
US economic news
Consumer prices fell 0.1 per cent as expected in December to be up 1.9 per cent over the year.
Local economic indicators
Today the Reserve Bank releases the credit and debit card lending figures for November. On Wednesday, results of the monthly consumer confidence figures are due. Also on Wednesday, the ABS releases a number of reports covering the construction sector. On Thursday the Housing Finance figures are released and finally, on Friday, we can expect the Overseas Arrivals and Departures publication.
Wall Street closed lower on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 0.02 per cent to close at 23,996 the S&P 500 lost 0.01 per cent to close at 2596 and the NASDAQ was down 0.2 per cent to close at 6971.
European markets closed also lower: London’s FTSE dropped 0.4 per cent, Paris lost 0.5 per cent and Frankfurt was down 0.3 per cent.
Asian markets closed higher: Tokyo’s Nikkei was up 1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.6 per cent, and China’s Shanghai Composite was up 0.7 per cent.
Returning home, the SPI futures are eyeing a lift of 15 points on Friday the Australian share market closed 0.4 per cent lower at 5,775.
Furniture retailer, Nick Scali (ASX:NCK) has announced the resignation of CFO, Kevin Fine. Christopher Malley has been appointed to replace him and will commence on the 6th of February. Malley is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and has work with Nick Scali as General Manager of Finance since November 2017. Shares in Nick Scali (ASX:NCK) closed 1 per cent HIGHER at $5.05 on Friday
One Australian Dollar at 8AM was buying 72.13 US cents, 56.16 Pence Sterling, 78.26 Yen and 62.97 Euro cents.
Iron Ore futures eyeing a fall of 0.2 per cent
Gold has gained $2.10 to US$1290 an ounce.
Silver has gained $0.01 to US$15.66 an ounce.
Oil has shed $1.00 to US$51.91 a barrel.