Reserve Bank of Australia holds cash rate: ASX closed 1.6% higher

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

It has been a mostly positive day of trade for the Australian share market, the local bourse managed to close 1.6 per cent higher. Shares in Collins Foods (ASX:CKF) lifted today after they reported KFC stores in Australia continue to show improvement in sales. The energy sector led the day and healthcare came in last.

The S&P/ASX200 index

At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 87 points higher to finish at 5,407.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 188 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 22 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a lift of 56 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 84 point rise tomorrow morning.

Local economic news

The Reserve Bank of Australia today confirmed the official cash rate will be held at 0.25 per cent, the current policy settings will be maintained, including the yield on 3-year Australian Government bonds of 25 basis points.

Company news

NEXTDC (ASX:NXT) has successfully completed its Share Purchase Plan raising $191 million. 24.6 million new fully paid ordinary shares are expected to be issued. The New Shares will be issued to successful SPP applicants at $7.80 per share. In total, NEXTDC has raised $863 million, consisting of the $672 million institutional placement completed on 8 April 2020 and the SPP of $191 million. Shares in NEXTDC (ASX:NXT) closed 0.1 per cent higher at $9.45.

Sanitizer company Zoono Group (ASX:ZNO) invoiced business to business (B2B) sales in excess of NZ$11.0 million (unaudited) for the month of April. They also recently signed a number of new distribution agreements in the UK and Europe, such as Rentokil and West Yorkshire Police. London Underground and UK and German mainline trains and stations are also being treated by the company.

Kathmandu Holdings (ASX:KMD) have seen a surge in online sales and digital engagement during the month of April. Kathmandu and Rip Curl have continued to trade online in all international jurisdictions, with Kathmandu New Zealand selling only essential items online from 3 April.

Qantas (ASX:QAN) is extended flight cancellations for June and July but could restore some services at relatively short notice as restrictions lift.

National Storage REIT (ASX:NSR) is set to raise up to $330 million to strengthen its balance sheet, replenish investment capacity and provide additional funding flexibility.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector was Energy adding 4.2 per cent while the worst performing sector was healthcare, shedding 0.4 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Collins Foods (ASX:CKF), rising 11.6 per cent to close at $7.68. Shares in Polynovo (ASX:PNV) and EML payments (ASX:EML) followed higher.

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Perenti Global (ASX:PRN), dropping 4.4 per cent to close at $0.88. Shares in Inghams Group (ASX:ING) and Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (ASX:URW) followed lower.

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei and Shanghai Composite are closed meanwhileHong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 0.8 per cent

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,703 an ounce.
Iron ore price is flat at US$84.04.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 2.5 per cent.
Light crude is US$1.57 up at US$24.35 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 64.57 US cents.

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