Auckland begins a week's lockdown after Covid-19 case detected: ASX poised to open higher

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

After Friday’s losses the Australian share market looks set to open higher this morning. Global bonds stabilised after US government bond yields hit their highest level in a year and causing a selloff in stocks. On Saturday, President Biden scored his first legislative win as the House of Representatives passed his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package. US consumer spending increased by the most in seven months in January.

Local economic news 

The week kicks off today with the release of the CoreLogic home value index and the Melbourne Institute inflation gauge issued for February. Also today the Business Indicators publication from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is scheduled. On Tuesday, a current account surplus of $13 billion is expected in the December quarter when the ABS Balance of Payments report is issued. Building approvals and quarterly government financial statistics round-out a busy day of economic data releases. On Wednesday, the ABS issues the National Accounts for the December quarter. Also on Wednesday, the AiGroup construction activity gauge, and the ABS weekly payroll jobs and wages data are all scheduled. On Thursday, the ABS releases the final, detailed retail and international trade estimates for January. On Friday, the AiGroup issues the Performance of Services index for February.

Markets

Wall Street closed mixed on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.5 per cent to close at 30,932, the S&P 500 fell 0.5 per cent to close at 3811 and the NASDAQ closed 0.6 per cent higher at 13,192.

European markets closed lower on Friday: London’s FTSE lost 2.5 per cent, Paris fell 1.4 per cent and Frankfurt closed 0.7 per cent lower.

Asian markets closed lower on Friday: Tokyo’s Nikkei lost almost 4 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 3.6 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite closed 2.1 per cent lower.

Back home, the SPI futures are pointing to 0.4 per cent gain. On Friday, the Australian share market closed 2.4 per cent lower at 6673.

Company news

SkyCity Entertainment Group (ASX:SKC) closed its Auckland casino and entertainment facilities and implementing physical distancing and hygiene requirements at its Hamilton and Queenstown properties over the weekend. These measures were in response to the announcement by the New Zealand Government to increase to Alert Level 3 in Auckland and to Alert Level 2 for the rest of the country for a period of seven days. Someone in the Auckland area tested positive to Covid-19. SkyCity Adelaide remains open with physical distancing and hygiene requirements already in place. Shares in Skycity Entertaintment (ASX:SKC) closed 0.35 per cent lower at $2.82 on Friday.

Ex-Dividends

Australian Finance Group Ltd (ASX:AFG) is paying 5.9 cents fully franked
Altium Limited (ASX:ALU) is paying 19 cents unfranked
Appen Limited (ASX:APX) is paying 5.5 cents 50 per cent franked
Aurizon Holdings Ltd (ASX:AZJ) is paying 14.4 cents 70 per cent franked
Bega Cheese Ltd (ASX:BGA) is paying 5 cents fully franked
Bingo Industries Ltd (ASX:BIN) is paying 1.5 cents fully franked
Credit Corp Group (ASX:CCP) is paying 36 cents fully franked
Clime Investment (ASX:CIW) is paying 1 cents fully franked
Evolution Mining Ltd (ASX:EVN) is paying 7 cents fully franked
Fortescue Metals Grp (ASX:FMG) is paying 147 cents fully franked
Heartland Group (ASX:HGH) is paying 3.7164 cents 70.67 per cent franked
Integral Diagnostics (ASX:IDX) is paying 5.5 cents fully franked
L1 Long Short Fund (ASX:LSF) is paying 1.5 cents fully franked
McGrath Ltd (ASX:MEA) is paying 0.5 cents fully franked
NB Global Corporate Income Trust (ASX:NBI) is paying 0.6963 cents unfranked
Steadfast Group Ltd (ASX:SDF) is paying 4.4 cents fully franked
VGI Partners Limited (ASX:VGI) is paying 28 cents fully franked
Worley Limited (ASX:WOR) is paying 25 cents unfranked

Currencies

One Australian Dollar at 8:00 AM was buying 77.11 US cents, 55.42 Pence Sterling, 82.26 Yen and 63.91 Euro cents.

Commodities

Iron Ore has gained 0.9 per cent to US$175.78.
Iron Ore futures suggest a 1.3 per cent gain.
Gold was down $46.06 to US$1729 an ounce.
Silver has lost $1.25 to US$26.44 an ounce.
Oil was down $2.03 to US$61.50 a barrel.