APRA drops Westpac (ASX:WBC) money laundering investigation: Aus market gains 0.8% over week

Market Reports

by Katrina Bullock

It’s been a strong week for the Australian share market. While rising bond yields stunted growth stocks mid-week, the recovering domestic economy helped drive gains. At the closing bell the S&P/ASX 200 index closed 53 points or 0.8 per cent higher today to finish at 6,767. Over the week, the market has gained 56 points or 0.8 per cent. The Consumer Discretionary sector led the gains rising 4.1 per cent this week, followed by Industrials which advanced 3.7 per cent.

Futures market

Dow futures are suggesting a rise of 108 points.
S&P 500 futures are eyeing a rise of 10 points.
The Nasdaq futures are eyeing a lift of 20 points.
And the ASX200 futures are eyeing a 54 point rise on Monday morning.

Broker moves

Citi has upgraded Qantas (ASX:QAN) to a buy with a price target of $6.14. The broker believes the government’s tourism stimulus package means increased border certainty. Shares in Qantas (ASX:QAN) closed flat at $5.30.

Company news

The Supreme Court of Australia today made orders for Coca-Cola Amatil (ASX:CCL) to convene a shareholder meeting to consider and vote on the scheme of arrangement, which would see Coca-Cola European Partners acquire its Aussie counterpart. The court also approved the distribution of the scheme’s explanatory statement. Shares in Coca-Cola Amatil (ASX:CCL) closed 0.1 per cent higher at $13.43.

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority has closed its investigation into Westpac (ASX:WBC) in regards to the AUSTRAC money laundering proceedings. The investigation considered possible breaches of the Banking Act including the Bank Executive Accountability Regime. Westpac remains subject to a court enforceable undertaking to implement an integrated risk governance remediation plan. Shares in Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) closed 0.3 per cent lower at $24.45.

A power struggle in the media world - as Nine’s coveted regional television affiliation deal goes to WIN Corporation, rather than the incumbent, Southern Cross Media (ASX:SXL). Southern Cross Media (ASX:SXL) shares tumbled 10.4 per cent today on the news.

DGR Global (ASX:DGR) has signed a deal with Auburn Resources and Armour Energy (ASX:AJQ) which will see Auburn acquire Armour’s wholly owned subsidiary, Ripple Resources.

A farm-in and joint venture agreement has been signed between Agrimin’s (ASX:AMN) Tali Resources and Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO). Under the deal, Rio Tinto can earn a joint venture interest of up to 75 per cent in five tenements held by Tali, by providing staged funding for exploration.

CHAB Office Trust, which is part owned by Charter Hall Group (ASX:CHC) and Abacus Property Group (ASX:ABP) is set to buy 241 Adelaide Street, Brisbane for $31.5 million.

Wall Street

Wrapped up our four trading days this week higher: The Dow Jones added 3.1 per cent, The S&P 500 added 2.5 per cent and the tech heavy Nasdaq gained 3.6 per cent.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was Information Technology, adding 2.3 per cent, while the sector with the fewest gains was Consumer Staples, adding 0.02 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was PointsBet Holdings (ASX:PBH), rising 8.5 per cent to close at $14.41. Shares in OZ Minerals (ASX:OZL) and Kogan.com (ASX:KGN) followed.

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Regis Resources (ASX:RRL), dropping 4.5 per cent to close at $2.99. Shares in Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) and Flight Centre Travel Group (ASX:FLT) followed.

Asian markets

Mixed. Japan’s Nikkei has gained 1.7 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has lost 0.1 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.3 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,719 an ounce.
The iron ore price rose 3.7 per cent to US$170.70. Its futures are pointing to a rise of 0.9 per cent.
Light crude is US$0.26 lower at US$61.38 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 77.83 US cents.

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