Despite a positive leads from Wall Street the Australian share market opened steady as is drifting lower at noon. The lacklustre performance comes following a wobbly week of losses amid a series of local annual general meetings. Across the board most sectors are in the red, weighed down by the utilities, industrial and telco sectors. Energy, mining and gold sectors are offering support after oil prices firmed overnight.
The S&P/ASX 200 index has dipped 10 points to 5,306 at noon. On the futures market the SPI is 3 points lower.
Select Harvests Limited (ASX:SHV)
has outlined plans to invest $12.6 million into a Biomass Electricity Cogeneration Plant and almond dryer in Victoria. The integrated nut and health food company has made the announcement at its annual general meeting today, which is aimed at improving sustainable profitability and reducing business risk. Select Harvests also highlighted the recent free trade agreement between Australia and Japan, Korea and China and provided a crop outlook and price update. Shares in Select Harvests have slipped 0.76 per cent and are trading at $6.52 at noon.
Mobile payments and mobile marketing company Mobile Embrace Limited (ASX:MBE)
has bought The Performance Factory for a total potential consideration of $7.2 million. Mobile Embrace describes The Performance Factory as a highly profitable and leading online and mobile performance marketing business. The acquisition will be paid for by cash and shares and is expected to be immediately earnings per share accretive over the current financial year. Shares in Mobile Embrace have risen 5.13 per cent and are trading at $0.21 at noon.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is energy, gaining 1.3 per cent to 12,825. Shares in Horizon Oil Limited (ASX:HZN)
have risen 6.82 per cent and trading at $0.24. Shares in Beach Energy Limited (ASX:BPT)
and Oil Search Limited (ASX:OSH)
are also stronger.
The worst performing sector is utilities, falling 1.4 per cent to 5,871. Shares in DUET Group (ASX:DUE)
have dropped 3.98 per cent, trading at $2.44. Shares in AusNet Services (ASX:AST)
and APA Group (ASX:APA)
are also lower.
Bailador Technology Investments Limited (ASX:BTI)
started trading today. The investment company is focussed on the IT sector and floated with an issue price of $1.00, opened at $1.00 and is currently trading at $0.97.
Gold and the dollar
Gold is buying $US1,193 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.8632.