Australia Markets closed

Aust shares look set to open flat


The Australian market looks set to open flat after Wall Street mainly held on to modest gains following better-than-expected US private sector jobs data and the Federal Reserve kept its interest rates unchanged.

At 0700 AEDT on Thursday, the share price futures index was up four points, or 0.07 per cent, at 5,933.

In the US, the central bank pointed to solid US economic growth and a strengthening labour market while downplaying the impact of recent hurricanes, a sign it is on track to lift borrowing costs again in December.

The ADP National Employment survey showed that US private employers added 235,000 jobs in October, surpassing estimates for 200,000 and setting up expectations for a strong US nonfarm payrolls report on Friday.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of US factory activity slipped to a reading of 58.7 in October from 60.8 in September, which was the highest since May 2004. But, a reading above 50 indicates growth in manufacturing, which accounts for about 12 per cent of the US economy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.25 per cent, the S&P 500 had gained 0.16 per cent at the bell but the Nasdaq Composite closed down 0.17 per cent.

Locally, in economic news on Thursday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics will release September's international trade in goods and services data plus building approvals figures for the same month.

In equities news, National Australia Bank is slated to release its full-year results while Fairfax Media will have its Domain spin-ff vote along with its annual general meeting while Seven West Media, Boral, Perpetual and Downer EDI have their AGMs.

The Australian market on Wednesday closed higher with gains in all but one sector and the All Ordinaries index closing above 6,000 points for the first time since the global financial crisis.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index rose 28.8 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 5,937.8 points.

The broader All Ordinaries index gained 29.1 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 6,005.5 points.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar is higher against a strengthened greenback following the US economic data and the Federal Reserve's decision to keep its interest rates on hold.

The local currency was trading at 76.72 US cents at 0700 AEDT on Thursday, from 76.62 on Wednesday.


One Australian dollar buys:

* 76.72 US cents, from 76.62 on Wednesday

* 87.56 Japanese yen, from 87.29 yen

* 66.02 euro cents, from 65.88 euro cents

* 57.90 British pence, from 57.72 pence

* 111.44 NZ cents, from 111.05 cents


The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEDT was $US1,275.24 per fine ounce, from $US1,272.27 per fine ounce on Wednesday.


* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 1.9101pct, unchanged

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.6555pct, unchanged

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* December 2017 10-year bond futures contract at 97.29 (implying a yield of 2.71pct), from 97.275 (implying a yield of 2.725pct) on Wednesday

* December 2017 3-year bond futures contract at 97.98 (2.02pct), from 97.97 (2.03pct).

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