Outlook: ASX eyes RBA minutes & China GDP

Market Reports

The Australian share market looks to continue the week’s positive momentum after Wall Street gained overnight. Some solid earnings reports supported US stocks in the absence of major economic data while European stocks fell amid weaker earnings results and profit warnings. 
 
Today’s direction will be dominated by the Reserve Bank of Australia’s October meeting minutes and China’s third quarter growth figures. Economists expect the world’s second largest economy to report a 1.8 per cent rise in the quarterly growth rate, pushing the annual pace of growth to 7.2 per cent from 7.5 per cent. 
 
On the local front Australia’s largest listed gold miner Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX:NCM) will release its quarterly production report and a series of companies will hold annual general meetings.
 
Global markets
 
After losing ground over last week Wall Street lifted into the new week: The Dow Jones Industrial Average firmed 0.1 per cent to close at 16,400, the S&P 500 rose 0.9 per cent to close at 1,904 and the Nasdaq gained 1.4 per cent to close at 4,316.
 
European markets extended last week’s falls and dropped into the new week: London's FTSE 100 declined 0.7 per cent, France's CAC 40 dropped 1.2 per cent and Germany's DAX sank 1.5 per cent.
 
Asian markets advanced into the new week: Japan’s Nikkei soared almost 4 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.2 per cent, and China’s Shanghai Composite put on 0.7 per cent.
 
The Australian share market rose for the fifth straight session on Monday to start the week 0.9 per cent higher: The S&P/ASX 200 index gained 48 points yesterday to close at 5,319. On the futures market the SPI is 14 points higher. 
 
Currencies 
 
The Australian dollar at 7:25am was buying $US0.8789, 54.37 Pence Sterling, 93.92 Yen and 68.66 Euro cents.
 
Economic news due out today 
 
Reserve Bank of Australia: October board meeting minutes
 
Australian Bureau of Statistics: International merchandise imports for September

Company news
 
Ten Network Holdings Limited (ASX:TEN) rose to one of yesterday’s best performing stocks in the S&P/ASX 200 amid speculation of a possible merger with Fairfax Media Limited (ASX:FXJ). While both media organisations have not confirmed or denied the reports, talk of a possible tie-up comes as both battle against declining advertising revenues. The speculation has also been fuelled by reports mining magnate Gina Rinehart, a Fairfax and Ten shareholder, is considering resigning from Ten’s board but retaining her investment. Shares in Fairfax Media lifted 3.21 per cent to close at 0.805 while shares in Ten Network Holdings gained 7.32 per cent to close at $0.22 on Monday. 
 
Shares in Talisman Mining Limited (ASX:TLM) surged more than 50 per cent after announcing it has secured what it describes as an outstanding growth opportunity. The exploration company has reached a binding deal with Glencore (LON:GLEN) to acquire the Sinclair Nickel Project in Western Australia. Talisman Mining will pay $8 million plus a deferred $2 million payment contingent upon a recommencement of mine production. The miner says the transaction represents a transformational opportunity for the company. Shares in Talisman Mining surged 52.38 per cent to close at $0.16 on Monday. 
 
Commodities 
 
Gold has gained $6.30 to $US1,245 an ounce for the December contract on Comex. 
Silver has lifted $0.14 to $17.47 for December. 
Copper has dipped $0.02 to $2.98 a pound. 
Oil has risen $0.25 to $US83 a barrel for November light crude in New York.