MARKET NEWS

Aust shares open deeply in the red
17/01/2018 10:16 AM

The Australian share market has followed Wall Street into the red and opening almost half a per cent lower.

At 1015 AEDT on Wednesday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 27 points, or 0.45 per cent, at 6,021.6, while the broader All Ordinaries index down 25.9 points, or 0.42 per cent, at 6,140.0 points.

In futures trading, the SPI200 futures contract was down 22 points, or 0.37 per cent, at 5,970 points.

Aust shares look set to open sharply lower
17/01/2018 7:38 AM

The Australian share market looks set to open sharply lower after the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell into the red after earlier breaching the 26,000 point mark for the first time.

At 0700 AEDT on Wednesday, the share price futures index was down 36 points, or 0.6 per cent, at 5,956.

In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average raced past the 26,000 mark for the first time as fourth-quarter earnings season got off to a strong start following upbeat results from UnitedHealth and Citigroup.

But the index turned tail later in the session, falling into negative territory, along with its peers the S&P500 and the Nasdaq, as oil prices fell and weighed on energy stocks.

In late afternoon trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.11 per cent, the S&P500 was down 0.31 per cent at 2,777.67, while the Nasdaq had fallen 0.44 per cent to 7,229.00.

Locally, in economic news on Wednesday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics is due to release November's housing finance data.

In equities news, metals and mining company South32 is slated to release quarterly results.

The Australian market on Tuesday closed weaker, led into the red by retreating financial and energy stocks, while the Australian dollar continued its upward run towards 80 US cents.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index fell 28.5 points, or 0.47 per cent, to 6,048.6 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index lost 21.8 points, or 0.35 per cent, to 6,165.9 points

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar has slipped against its US counterpart which has recouped a little of its recent losses.

The local currency was trading at 79.60 US cents at 0700 AEDT on Wednesday, from 79.64 on Tuesday.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 79.60 US cents, from 79.64 on Tuesday

* 87.79 Japanese yen, from 88.29 yen

* 64.87 euro cents, from 64.95 euro cents

* 57.71 British pence, from 57.77 pence

* 109.41 NZ cents, from 109.36 cents

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEDT was $US1,338.536 per fine ounce, from $US1,340.04 per fine ounce on Tuesday.

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 2.0559pct, unchanged

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.7241pct, unchanged

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* March 2018 10-year bond futures contract at 97.235 (implying a yield of 2.765pct), from 97.225 (implying a yield of 2.775pct) on Tuesday

* March 2018 3-year bond futures contract at 97.810 (2.190pct), from 97.795 (2.205pct).

(*Bond market closes taken at 1630 AEDT previous local session; currency closes taken from 1700 AEDT previous local session)

$A is steady against $US
17/01/2018 7:04 AM

The Australian dollar is starting the day just as it left off on Tuesday, amid a slight lift in the US dollar, a fall in commodity prices and little data to influence it.

At 0635 AEDT on Wednesday, the Australian dollar was worth 79.64 US cents, unchanged from Tuesday.

The US dollar index against a basket of six major currencies rose off a three-year low, lifting 0.29 per cent to 90.703.

Commodity prices fell, with implicit implications for commodity currencies.

Westpac's Imre Speizer says the US dollar had not risen that much, but it was the sentiment that screamed louder

"A clawing back of only a small amount (around +0.25 per cent on the day, but +0.5 per cent off extremes) of USD losses seemed more meaningful than the actual moves due to the change in market tone," he said in a morning note.

"Data releases remained light, despite the return of US markets, but less hawkish tones from European Central Bank members, concerns that the German coalition may face distinct hurdles this coming weekend and a decent pullback in UK's core CPI added to the less USD negative tone from Asia,"

"The relatively sharp pullback in commodities and only a minor lift above initial expectations for the GDT auction saw both AUD and NZD retreat."

He said the Australian dollar's upward moves had been pushing technical limits.

"At present, this seems like a pause, but recent moves in EUR, AUD and especially NZD had become technically stretched."

The key event risk for the local currency on Wednesday would be the ANZ-MI consumer sentiment report.

"AUD should consolidate between 0.7920 and the key 0.7980-00 area in advance of both consumer confidence and Thursday's employment report."

The Aussie dollar is down against both the yen and the euro.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 0635 AEDT ON WEDNESDAY

One Australian dollar buys:

* 79.64 US cents, unchanged

* 87.88 Japanese yen, from 88.29 yen

* 64.87 euro cents, from 64.95 euro cents

(*Currency closes taken at 1700 AEDT previous local session)