Outlook: ASX set to defy weak leads

Market Reports

The Australian share market looks set to return to positive territory and open slightly higher, defying flat and lower finishes in the US and European markets, with the SPI futures contract pointing higher and the Aussie dollar trading higher early.
US economic news

In the US, initial jobless claims grew by 38,000 to 368,000 last week, the Labor Department said, adding to concern about the economy a day after the government said gross-domestic product unexpectedly shrank last quarter.


Wall Street closed lower yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 50 points to close at 13,861, the S&P500 dropped 4 points to close at 1,498 and the Nasdaq shed 0.2 points to close at 3,142.
European markets closed lower also: London’s FTSE lost 46 points, Paris dropped 33 points and Frankfurt lost 35 points.
Asian markets closed mixed: Hong Kong’s Hang Seng dropped 93 points, Tokyo’s Nikkei added 25 and China’s Shanghai Composite went up by 3 points.
The Australian share market closed lower yesterday: The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed 18 points down to finish at 4,879. On the futures market the SPI is 5 points up. 


The Australian Dollar at 8:40AM was buying $US1.043 cents, 65.80 Pence Sterling, 95.47 Yen and 76.84 Euro cents.
Economic news

Due out today from the Australian Bureau of Statistics is its Producer prices indexes for the December quarter. The Reserve Bank of Australia delivers its index of commodity prices for month just ended, The Australian Industry Group performance of manufacturing (PMI) index for January is due as is the RP Data-Rismark home prices for January.

Company news

Quickflix Limited (ASX:QFX) increased its number of streaming customers by 18 per cent to over 42 thousand in the December quarter.
The online movie company boosted revenue by 6 per cent to $5.6 million, and says its consolidating its position whilst progressing towards its goal of delivering sustainable growth. Shares in Quickflix closed flat yesterday at $0.03.  
SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited (ASX:SKC) has responded to media speculation regarding its intentions for the Philipine gaming market. CEO Nigel Morrison says whilst the company considers the Philipines market to be attractive, there is no information yet that requires disclosure to shareholders. Shares in SKYCITY closed 0.32 per cent up yesterday at $3.17.   

Advanced Share Registry Limited (ASX:ASW) is offering a 1.85 cent fully franked.

Gold is down $19.30 to $US1,661 an ounce for the February contract on Comex. Silver is down $0.82 to $31.35 for March. Copper is down $0.02 at $3.73 a pound. Oil is down $0.45 at US$97.49 a barrel for March light crude in New York.

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