AMP (ASX:AMP) appoints new CEO: ASX to open higher

Market Reports

by Melissa Darmawan

The Australia share market looks set to open higher despite mixed leads from Wall Street. Investors rotated into technology shares while waiting on President Joe Biden’s infrastructure spending plan. The US$2-4 trillion package proposes to raise company tax rate to 28 per cent to fund the plan with measures to stop profits going offshore. Cyclical sectors such as energy, materials, financials and industrials all registered losses while technology shares led the gains. Oil prices fell after the OPEC panel meeting ended without an oil policy recommendation ahead of today's meeting. In Europe, shares closed slightly lower with Deliveroo tumbling 26.3 per cent on its first day of trading in the UK. Back home, Queensland has announced new Covid-19 exposed locations.

Local economic news 

Today the Australian Bureau of Statistics is set to release a number of reports for February.
  • Retail trade: Preliminary figures show retail sales dropping 1.1 per cent due to lockdowns in Victoria and Western Australia.
  • International trade: After a record surplus in January, another surplus is expected.
  • Job vacancies are expected to tip record highs.
  • Lending indicators: Value of new loan commitments for housing are also expected to hit all time highs due to low interest rates and the HomeBuilder grant.
Markets

Wall Street closed mixed yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 0.3 per cent lower at 32,985, the S&P 500 added 0.4 per cent to 3,973 and the NASDAQ closed 1.54 per cent higher at 13,247.

European markets closed mostly lower: London’s FTSE dropped 0.9 per cent, Paris dipped 0.3 per cent and Frankfurt closed flat.

Asian markets closed lower: Tokyo’s Nikkei dropped 0.9 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.7 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite shed 0.4 per cent.

Taking all of this into equation, the SPI futures are pointing to a 0.3 per cent rise.

Yesterday, the Australian share market closed 0.8 per cent higher at 6,791.

Company news

AMP (ASX:AMP) has today announced the appointment of Alexis George as Chief Executive Officer. The move comes following the decision by current CEO Francesco De Ferrari to retire. Alexis has over 25 years experience in the financial services industry and will be coming from ANZ Bank. She currently holds the role as the Deputy Chief Executive Officer and is set to join AMP in Q3 this year. Shares in AMP (ASX:AMP) closed 1.6 per cent lower at $1.27.

Ex-Dividends

Cyclopharm Limited (ASX:CYC) is paying 0.5 cents unfranked
E&P Financial Group (ASX:EP1) is paying 2 cents fully franked
NB Global Corporate Income Trust (ASX:NBI) is paying 0.69 cents unfranked
Prime Financial (ASX:PFG) is paying 0.3 cents fully franked

Currencies

One Australian Dollar at 7:50 AM was buying 75.96 US cents, 55.10 Pence Sterling, 84.08 Yen and 64.76 Euro cents.

Commodities

Iron ore futures are suggesting a 0.8 per cent rise.
Gold has added $22.80 to US $1709 an ounce.
Silver was up $0.31 to US $24.45 an ounce.
Oil was down $0.81 to US $57.04 a barrel.