Aussie shares have inked a two day gain finishing 1.2 per cent higher, with all sectors joining in on the gains, seeing the local bourse continue to claw up from the sharp 2.9 per cent fall felt last Thursday, when we saw the 2-10 US yield invert, flagging a recession indicator. However, today we had positive news from the get-go, Wall Street continued its bounce back from its August sell-off on the US granting an extension of 90 days for American companies to do business with Huawei. Bonds around the globe also rose, putting water on the fire of recession fears. All this is boding well for US equities, which are recovering from the worst session of 2019, last week.
And for us, now the benchmark ASX200 is about 4.8 per cent away from the all-time high hit late July, after three heavy falls in August. We saw a suite of results come out from top 200 companies that met or beat market expectations and a bevy of broker upgrades, including for Beach Energy (ASX:BPT), which was was called out as a standout exploration and production company in Australia.
At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 1.2 per cent higher or 78 points higher to finish at 6,545.
Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 42 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 7 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a lift of 17 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 1 per cent or 62 point rise.
Leading intellectual property (IP) services group in the Asia Pacific, IPH (ASX:IPH) reported a 31 per cent uptick in its attributable profit, taking its net profit after tax (NPAT) to $53.1 million for the year ended 30 June 2019. IPH continued to produce double-digit revenue and earnings growth with a strong increase Asian business profits from client filing activity. Headline group revenue rose 15 per cent on FY18 to $259.5 million. Shares in IPH (ASX:IPH) closed 10.4 per cent higher at $9.45.
Sonic Healthcare (ASX:SHL) reported results in line with its guidance, with statutory net profit for the year to 30 June 2019 up 16 per cent to $550 million. Strategically SHL says its business has taken major steps forward diving into the anatomical markets in the USA and Germany, opening up new pathways for future growth. Revenue growth saw a 12 per cent lift to $6.2 billion Underlying EBITDA grew 10 per cent to $1.1 billion.
Aged care provider, Estia Health Limited (ASX:EHE) reported a 0.3 per cent lift in NPAT to $41.3 million, despite ‘one of the most challenging periods for the aged care sector’ amid the Royal Commission and new aged care reform. EHE’s FY19 revenue rose 7.1 per cent on FY18 to $586.0 million. Its earnings (EBITDA) saw a minor uptick of 4.3 per cent to $94.0 million.
Engineering company, Monadelphous Group (ASX:MND) saw its attributable profit fall to $50.6 million, down from FY18’s $71.4 million, on the back of depreciation expenses for its plant and equipment renewal, combined with a drop in resources construction activity. However, today MND announced the win of major construction contract at Albemarle Lithium’s lithium hydroxide plant in WA. The company has over $400 million in contracts for FY2020.
Best and worst performers of the day
The best performing sector was S&P/ASX Energy adding 2.4 per cent while the worst performing sector was S&P/ASX Materials, gaining 0.4 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was IPH (ASX IPH), rising 10.4 per cent to close at $9.45. Shares in Beach Energy Limited (ASX:BPT) and Estia Health Limited (ASX:EHE) followed higher.
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Saracen Mineral Holdings (ASX:SAR), dropping 3.5 per cent to close at $3.58. Shares in Eclipx Group (ASX:ECX) and Healius Limited (ASX:HLS) followed lower.
Japan’s Nikkei has gained 0.6 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has lost 0.2 per cent.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,498 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 1.3 per cent to US$88.40
Iron ore futures are pointing to a fall of 1 per cent.
Light crude is US$1.30 up at US$56.11 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 67.94 US cents.