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Market steady as early gains are erased

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Published on: Thursday, May 11, 2017

The share market ended the day steady after early gains by the big four banks evaporated in afternoon trade, and miners fall on weaker iron ore futures.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 0.05 per cent at the close, after gaining as much as 0.8 per cent during the session.

Morgans senior private client adviser Bill Chatterton said gains by the banks, following two days of heavy falls due to the government’s proposed bank levy, helped buoy the market in morning trade.

But those gains were retraced after the Australian Bankers’ Association said the industry had more questions than answers about the levy after a meeting with Treasury officials.

“It shows the banks are still under pressure,” Mr Chatterton said.

“There are not a lot of bright spots on the market today with softer Chinese iron ore futures also weighing on the miners.”

ANZ fell 0.3 per cent and ANZ dropped 0.1 per cent, while Commonwealth Bank gained 0.4 per cent and National Australia Bank was 0.3 per cent higher.

Macquarie Group, the other institution facing a levy, bucked the trend to jump 1.8 per cent.

Iron ore miner Fortescue Metals dropped five per cent and Rio Tinto was 0.7 per cent weaker, while BHP Billiton gained 0.4 per cent.

Wealth manager AMP dropped 2.2 per cent to $5.30 after it reported net cash outflows of $199 million in the first quarter of 2017.

Myer slipped 3.45 per cent as it reported a 3.3 per cent decline in total sales in the third quarter of its fiscal year.

Other retailers were also sold off, with JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman each losing 1.2 per cent after Citigroup warned Amazon’s presence in the local market would significantly weaken their long-term earnings.

Graincorp shares jumped 8.3 per cent to $9.88 after the bulk grain handler’s half year profit soared to $90 million.

ON THE ASX:

* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 2.9 points, or 0.05 per cent, at 5,878.3 points.

* The broader All Ordinaries index was up 0.9 points, or 0.02 per cent, at 5,912 points.

* The June SPI200 futures contract was was down six points, or 0.1 per cent, at 5,865 points.

* National turnover was 2.5 billion securities traded worth $6.9 billion.

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1700 AEST was $US1,221.70 per fine ounce, up 10 US cents from $US1,221.60 on Wednesday

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1700 AEST:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 73.65 US cents, from 73.56 on Wednesday

* 84.05 Japanese yen, from 83.91 yen

* 67.72 euro cents, from 67.56 cents

* 56.95 British pence, from 56.72 pence

* 107.45 New Zealand cents, from 106.65 NZ cents

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 1630 AEST:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 1.8285pct, from 1.8506pct on Wednesday.

* CGS 4.75 per cent April 2027, 2.6535pct, from 2.6584pct.

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* June 2017 10-year bond futures contract at 97.315 (implying a yield of 2.685pct), from 97.310 (2.690pct) from Wednesday

* June 2017 3-year bond futures contract at 98.130 (1.870pct), from 98.100 (1.900pct).

(*Currency closes taken at 1700 AEST previous local session, bond market closes taken at 1630 AEST previous local session)


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