The local sharemarket closed 0.9 per cent higher or 62 points up to 6,825. Gold miners, Northern Star (ASX:NST) and Newcrest (ASX:NCM) shares fell today and Amcor (ASX:AMC) shares did well today after they upgraded their earnings and lifted their dividend today.
US futures all higher
The Dow futures are suggesting a gain of 62 points. S&P 500 futures are eyeing a lift of 16 points. The Nasdaq futures are up 80 points. And the SPI futures are eyeing a rise of 77 points for tomorrow morning.
Local economic news
Living costs rose for all households
The seasonally adjusted estimate for total dwellings approved rose 10.9% in December. The surge in building activity is set to continue.
Havilah Resources (ASX:HAV) has entered into a binding memorandum of understanding the exploration and potential development of its uranium interests with Aroha Resources Pty. It is anticipated that Havilah would hold a 25% interest in Aroha at the time of the proposed ASX listing. There will be a 1.5 per cent Net Smelter Return royalty on all Aroha uranium sales revenue. It will also pay $500,000 from its IPO proceeds within one month of listing and pay a 1.5 per cent net smelter return. Shares in Havilah Resources (ASX:HAV) closed flat at $0.21.
Westpac (ASX:WBC) acknowledges today’s decision by the High Court of Australia which has dismissed Westpac’s appeal in relation to proceedings brought by ASIC about the provision of financial product advice.
Westgold Resources (ASX:WGX) has suspended all FIFO operations from the lock down region in Western Australia to the unaffected region in which it operates.
Packaging company Amcor (ASX:AMC) has upgraded its guidance for earnings growth for the 2021 financial year and raised its dividend after it’s first half results.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is Real Estate Investment Trust gaining 2.6 per cent while the sector trailing behind was Materials dropping 0.8 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Virgin Money UK (ASX:VUK) closing 14.6 per cent higher to $2.82 followed by Corporate Travel Management (ASX:CTD) and Carsales.com (ASX:CAR).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) dropping 4.2 per cent to $12.51, followed by shares in Saracen Mineral Holdings (ASX:SAR) and South32 (ASX:S#@).
Asian markets mixed
Japan’s Nikkei has gained 0.8 per cent Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is down 0.4 per cent and the Shanghai Composite is 0.2 per cent higher.
Gold is trading at US$1,842 an ounce.
Iron ore has lost 4.6 per cent to $149.08.
Iron ore futures are suggesting a fall of 1.6 per cent.
Light crude has gained $0.10 cents to $51.87.
One Australian dollar is buying 76.21US cents.