AUD advances against the USD: ASX poised to open higher


The Australian share market looks set to open higher this morning as shares on Wall Street ended their week up. The Aussie dollar advanced and now sits just under 0.74 US dollars. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the US, said yesterday that the States is heading into a difficult period of the coronavirus pandemic. He said current restrictions and travel advisories will be necessary for the Christmas holiday season. Back home, a Federal Government program offering cash grants for housing construction projects has been extended, but at a lower amount. The HomeBuilder program, due to finish at the end of the year, will be extended until March 31.

Economic News

The week kicks off on Monday with the Business Indicators publication from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). The quarterly data includes readings on profits, sales, inventories and wages. Also on Monday The Reserve Bank will issue private sector credit data and the Melbourne Institute provides its monthly inflation update. On Tuesday, weekly indicators are issued, including Commonwealth Bank (CBA) data on card spending, the ANZ-Roy Morgan consumer sentiment index and ABS payrolls data. Also on Tuesday: the Reserve Bank Board meeting; CoreLogic home prices; Balance of Payments; AiGroup manufacturing survey; building approvals and government financial statistics. On Wednesday, the ABS issues the National Accounts for the September quarter. Also on Wednesday, Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe appears before the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics at 11am AEDT. On Thursday, the ABS will issue the October international trade and lending data. And on Friday the ABS releases the final, detailed retail trade estimates for October.

Markets

Wall Street closed higher on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.1 per cent to close at 29,910, the S&P 500 gained 0.2 per cent to close at 3638 and the NASDAQ closed 0.9 per cent higher at 12,206.

European markets closed higher on Friday: London’s FTSE added 0.1 per cent, Paris gained 0.6 per cent and Frankfurt closed 0.4 per cent higher.

Asian markets closed higher on Friday: Tokyo’s Nikkei added 0.4 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.3 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite closed 1.1 per cent higher.

Back home, the SPI futures are pointing to 0.6 per cent gain. On Friday, the Australian share market closed 0.5 per cent lower at 6601.

Company news

Synlait Milk (ASX:SM1) is pleased to announce that its NZ$20 million share purchase plan has closed oversubscribed. The SPP received strong shareholder support with Synlait receiving applications totalling approximately NZ$59 million. Refunds of the surplus application amounts paid will be made to applicants on or before 8 December 2020. Approximately NZ$167.2 million of the NZ$180 million placement was raised on 18 November 2020, with the balance representing a portion of the new shares allocated to Bright Dairy Holding. Shares in Synlait Milk (ASX:SM1) closed 2.62 per cent lower at $5.20 on Friday.

Ex-Dividends

Infratil Limited (ASX:IFT) is paying 5.6433 cents unfranked
Morphic Ethical Equities Fund (ASX:MEC) is paying 1.5 cents fully franked
MCP Income Opportunities Trust (ASX:MOT) is paying 0.95 cents unfranked
MCP Master Income Trust (ASX:MXT) is paying 0.79 cents unfranked
Orica Limited (ASX:ORI) is paying 16.5 cents unfranked

Currencies

One Australian Dollar at 7:45 AM was buying 73.93 US cents, 55.48 Pence Sterling, 76.98 Yen and 61.81 Euro cents.

Commodities

Iron Ore has added 1.0 per cent to US$129.62.
Iron Ore futures suggest a 0.4 per cent fall.
Gold was down $23.10 to US$1788 an ounce.
Silver has dropped $0.81 to US$22.64 an ounce.
Oil was down $0.18 to US$45.53 a barrel.

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