Market to close early today for Christmas: ASX set to open higher


The Australian share market looks set to open higher this morning following leads from Wall Street and Europe. UK Bond yields and the British pound jumped yesterday on reports that a long-awaited Brexit trade deal between Britain and the European Union was close. It’s a shortened session today with the market closing at 2:10 pm due to Christmas. Stocks often experience a Santa rally so we will be keeping our eyes open for that.

Local economic news 

Building Approvals for November will be released from the Australian Bureau of Statistics. Also, figures on international trade in goods and services.

Markets

Wall Street closed mixed yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.4 per cent to 30,130, the S&P 500 gained 0.1 per cent to 3690 and the NASDAQ closed 0.3 per cent lower at 12,771.

European markets closed higher, London’s FTSE added 0.7 per cent, Paris gained 1.1 per cent and Frankfurt closed 1.3 per cent higher.

Asian markets closed higher, Tokyo’s Nikkei added 0.3 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.9 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite closed 0.8 per cent higher.

Taking all of this into equation, the SPI futures are pointing to a 0.7 per cent gain.

Yesterday, the Australian share market closed 0.7 per cent higher at 6643.

Company news

The a2 Milk Company (ASX:A2M) has entered into binding agreements relating to the acquisition of a 75 per cent interest in Mataura Valley Milk (MVM), a dairy nutrition business, located in Southland in New Zealand for NZ$268.5 million. The acquisition will allow A2 Milk to participate in nutritional products manufacturing, provides supplier and geographic diversification. China Animal Husbandry Group will retain a 25 per cent interest in Mataura Valley Milk. alongside a2MC. They are a wholly owned subsidiary of China National Agriculture Development Group Co., Ltd, which is also the parent company of a2MC’s strategic logistics and distribution partner in China, CSFA Holdings Shanghai, Co., Ltd. (China State Farm). Shares in A2 Milk (ASX:A2M) closed 2.41 per cent higher at $11.03 yesterday.

Currencies

One Australian Dollar at 8:20 AM was buying 75.81 US cents, 56.20 Pence Sterling, 78.51 Yen and 62.19 Euro cents.

Commodities

Iron Ore has lost 1.5 per cent to US$162.03.
Iron Ore futures suggest 2.4 per cent gain.
Gold has gained $6.70 to US$1877 an ounce.
Silver was up $0.20 to US$25.74 an ounce.
Oil was up $1.04 to US$48.06 a barrel.