The Australian share market looks set to slip at open on its final trading day of the year as US markets took a tumble on concerns that President Obama and the Republican-controlled house of representatives were a long way from a deal to avoid toppling over the fiscal cliff tomorrow.
Wall Street closed down on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 158 points to close at 12,938, the S&P500 lost 16 points to close at 1,402 and the Nasdaq lost 26 points to close at 2,960.
European markets closed down: London’s FTSE lost 29 points, Paris dropped 54 points and Frankfurt lost 43 points.
Asian markets meanwhile closed higher: Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 47 points, Tokyo’s Nikkei added 72 and China’s Shanghai Composite added 27 points.
The Australian share market closed higher on Friday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 23 points up to finish at 4,671. On the futures market the SPI is 22 points down.
The Australian Dollar at 8:40AM was buying $US1.037 cents, 64.14 Pence Sterling, 88.99 Yen and 78.5 Euro cents.
Due out today from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) are financial aggregates for November.
Mineral developer Red 5 Limited (ASX:RED) has fully drawn a $US25 million prepaid gold swap facility against the sale of future gold production from its Siana gold mine in the Philippines. Red 5 says the proceeds of the facility will be committed to various minor capital productivity and efficiency expenditures and general working capital. Shares in Red 5 closed 3.36 per cent higher on Friday at $1.23.
Fairfax Media Limited (ASX:FXJ) appears destined for board level change after advertising tycoon John Singleton and Investment banker Mark Carnegie struck an allegiance with majority shareholder Gina Rinehart on Friday. The two purchased small stakes in the embattled media giant, with Mr Singleton admitting he believes the current board has struggled to come to terms with the new media environment, a fact he believes is there for all to see in the share price and lack of direction at the company. Shares in Fairfax Media closed 1.04 per cent lower on Friday at $0.475.
There’s one company going ex-dividend today and that is computer whole saler Dicker Data Limited (ASX:DDR), offering a 1 cent, fully franked.
Gold is down $7.80 to $US1,656 an ounce for the February contract on Comex.
Silver is down $0.26 to $29.98 for March.
Copper is down $0.01 at $3.59 a pound.
Oil is down $0.07 at US$90.80 a barrel for February light crude in New York.