US jobs numbers boost Wall Street: Aus shares to open higher

Market Reports

by Anna Napoli

The local sharemarket is poised to open higher following strong leads from Wall Street on Friday. In the US stocks rose sharply as investor sentiment got a boost from much stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs data.

US economic news

The U.S. economy added 128,000 jobs in October easily beating estimates of a gain of 75,000 jobs. The unemployment rate ticked slightly higher to 3.6 per cent from 3.5 per cent, still near the lowest in 50 years. Friday’s jobs report came after the Federal Reserve cut rates by 25 basis points on Thursday.

Local economic news

The week kicks-off today with updates on retail trade, and monthly inflation from the Melbourne institute. On Tuesday, the Reserve Bank Board meets and hands down its interest rate decision. no change in rates is expected. AiGroup and CommBank/IHS Markit also release their services sector indexes. On Thursday international trade (exports and imports) and AiGroup’s Performance of Construction Index (October) are due. Finally on Friday the Reserve Bank provides a quarterly update of its economic growth (GDP) and the ABS issues new lending data.

Markets

Wall Street closed higher on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.11 per cent to close at 27,347, the S&P 500 added almost 1 per cent to close at 3067 and the NASDAQ advanced 1.1 per cent to 8386.

European markets closed higher on Friday: London’s FTSE added 0.8 per cent, Paris gained 0.6 per cent and Frankfurt closed 0.7 per cent higher.

Asian markets closed mixed on Friday: Tokyo’s Nikkei fell 0.3 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.7 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite gained 1 per cent.

Taking all of this into equation, the SPI futures are pointing to 0.4 per cent gain. On Friday, the Australian share market closed 6 points (0.1 per cent) higher at 6669.

Company news

The Murray Goulburn Co-op (ASX:MGC) has reached an agreement to settle a class action which commenced in May 2016. The settlement amount is $37.5 million inclusive of interest and costs, which the business says will be substantially funded through insurance. The Boards of MG determined that the agreement to settle the class action was a commercial decision made in the best interests of MG Shareholders and Unitholders in the MG Unit Trust. Shares in MG Unit Trust (ASX:MGC) closed 4.9 per cent higher to $0.43 on Friday.

Ex-Dividends

Pengana International Equities Ltd (ASX:PIA) is paying 3.5 cents 67.14 per cent franked.

Currencies

One Australian Dollar at 7:40 AM was buying 69.20 US cents, 53.57 Pence Sterling, 74.90 Yen and 61.96 Euro cents.

Commodities

Iron Ore has lost 0.5 per cent to US$85.56
Iron Ore futures suggest a 0.7 per cent fall.
Gold has dropped $3.40 to US$1511 an ounce.
Silver was down 2 cents to US$18.05 an ounce.
Oil has gained $2.02 to US$56.20 a barrel.