The Australian share market closed 0.91 per cent higher taking heart from some positive gains in global markets ahead of the weekend. It’s the fifth consecutive day of gains for the local market. Medibank released its IPO prospectus indicating the federal government could raise up to $5.5 billion from the sale of Australia’s largest private health insurer.
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 48 points up to finish at 5,319.
The value of trades was $3.5 billion on volume of 619 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA)
, ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ)
and National Australia Bank Limited (ASX:NAB)
On the futures market the SPI is 60 points up.
FAR Limited (ASX:FAR)
has strengthened its cash position through an oversubscribed $46.7 million capital raising. The news comes just two weeks after FAR revealed a significant oil discovery in the FAN-1 exploration well offshore of Senegal in West Africa. FAR says the discovery of oil in FAN-1 and an extended period of unscheduled maintenance have resulted in an increase to the forecast cost of the Senegal drilling program. The additional funds raised will now allow it to complete what the company describes as a very exciting drilling program. Shares in FAR have slipped 11.11 per cent to $0.12.
Transfield Services Limited (ASX:TSE)
has recommended share holders take no action on a near $1 billion takeover bid it has received Spanish infrastructure firm, Ferrovial Servi-cios. The maintenance and construction services company is being offered $1.95 per share less the value of any dividends or other distributions after the 17th of October. While Transfield believes the offer does not reflect the underlying value of the company it has agreed to open its books to its suitor and will conduct exploratory talks. Transfield also said there is no certainty an acceptable proposal will eventuate. Shares in Transfield have jumped 26.67 per cent to $1.90.
Ausdrill Limited (ASX:ASL)
has downgraded its profit guidance for the 2015 financial year after a challenging first quarter.
Shares in Mint Wireless Limited (ASX:MNW)
took a run after the mobile payment and transactions processing company announced eftpos certification for its mobile payments solution, a strategic review to explore growth opportunities and the departure of its CEO.
Indoor Skydive Australia Group Limited (ASX:IDZ)
has started work on its iFLY Gold Coast indoor skydiving facility on Surfers Paradise Boulevard in Queensland.
And Downer EDI Limited (ASX:DOW)
has inked a deal to buy Tenix Holdings Australia for $300 million.
Best and worst performers
All sectors were up across the board. The best performing sector was consumer discretionary adding 1.4 per cent to close at 1,754. The sector with the least gains was real estate investment trusts, adding 0.2 per cent to close at 1,090 points.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Transfield Services, rising 26.67 per cent to close at $1.90 after its takeover offer. Shares in Ten Network and Western Area Services also closed higher.
The worst performing stock was Medusa Mining, dropping 8.11 per cent to close at $0.68. Shares in Drillsearch and Resolute Mining also closed lower.
Gold is trading at $US1,238 an ounce. Light crude is $0.05 up at $US82.75 a barrel. The Australian dollar is buying 87.74 US cents.