Share market closes above 6000: ASX closes 1.95% higher

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

It has been a positive day of trade for the Australian share market. The S&P/ASX 200 hit over 6000 earlier today for the first time since October and closed 1.95 per cent higher that's 115 points higher at 6006. The big banks helped as they soared after the Royal Commission's final report  Investment management and financial advice firm IOOF (ASX:IFL) also made gains today after the release of the Hayne report. They say they are fully supportive of the recommendations. Nine Entertainment Company (ASX:NEC) and its real estate company Domain (ASX:DHG) are both down. The Reserve Bank of Australia kept the cash rate unchanged. Taking into account trade tensions affecting global trade and some investment decisions. Growth in the Chinese economy has continued to slow. More on the cash rate later. Retail sales figures for December have come in lower than expected. And Financials Excluding REIT was leading the sectors today with Healthcare coming in behind.

Futures

Dow futures are suggesting a fall of 20 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a fall of 4 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a drop of 0.5 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 111 point rise for tomorrow morning

Local economic news

The Reserve Bank of Australia decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent. The global economy grew above trend in 2018, although it slowed in the second half of the year.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released figures for Australian retail turnover showing it fell 0.4 per cent in December 2018, seasonally adjusted. This follows a 0.5 per cent rise in November 2018.

And in trend terms, the balance on goods and services saw a surplus of $2.796 billion in December 2018, an increase of $131m on the surplus in November 2018.

Company news 

William H. Gross has decided to retire from Janus Henderson Investors (ASX:JHG). Known as Bill he will focus on managing his personal assets and private charitable foundation. The 74 year old co-founded PIMCO in 1971 and served as managing director and its chief investment officer. He joined Janus Henderson in 2014. Janus Henderson Investors (ASX:JHG) closed 2.9 per cent higher at $31.55.

After digesting Hayne's report AMP (ASX:AMP) Chairman David Murray responded saying the proposed regulatory changes will require a serious and determined effort to implement but, with industry support, it ‘should deliver better outcomes for customers’.

Global software company, Live Tiles (ASX:LVT) is set to snap up European digital workplace software company, Wizdom. Consideration for the deal is made up of a base valuation and earn out, with an aggregate purchase price cap of EUR 30 million.

And CIMIC Group's (ASX:CIM) CPB Contractors has been selected by the NSW government to design and construct the Wagga Wagga Health Service Stage 3 Redevelopment Project.The project will generate revenue of $107 million to the company.

Best and worst performers 

The best performing sector was Financials Excluding REIT adding 4.5 per cent while the worst performing sector was Healthcare, shedding 0.2 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Steadfast Group (ASX:SDF), rising 11.5 per cent to close at $2.91. Shares in AMP (ASX:AMP) and Ausdrill (ASX:ASL) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Domain Holdings (ASX:DHG), dropping 5.2 per cent to close at $2.20. Shares in Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR) and Bluescope Steel (ASX:BSL) followed lower.

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.03 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and the Shanghai Composite are currently closed.

To commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,315 an ounce.
Iron ore price is flat at US$85.53
Iron ore futures are eyeing a rise of 6.3 per cent.
Light crude is $0.42 lower at US$54.84 barrel.