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Aust shares look set to open higher

Chris Hutchings
AAP

The Australian share market looks set to open higher while the Australian dollar has fallen.

The Australian share market looks set to follow its international peers and open in the green, while the local dollar has fallen nearly a third of a cent against the US dollar.

At 0700 AEDT on Wednesday, the share price futures index was up 18 points, or 0.30 per cent, at 6,106.

The Australian dollar has dropped 0.30 of a cent against the greenback which has inched to an 11-day peak, continuing its recovery off a more-than-three-month low.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six rival currencies, was up 0.18 per cent at 92.524.

The world's key equities markets have closed in the green in the offshore session with investor confidence high ahead of major company earnings reports.

Market chatter has focused on Japan's central bank's reduction in bond purchases and China's central bank's apparent loosening of its currency management, Westpac's Imre Speizer says in a morning note.

In late afternoon trade, Wall Street is following suit with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.53 per cent, at 25,416.82, the S&P 500 was up 0.29 per cent, at 2,755.70 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.22 per cent, at 7,173.31.

Locally, in economic news on Wednesday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics is due to release November's job vacancies figures.

No major equities news is expected on Wednesday.

The Australian market on Tuesday closed hardly changed as gains by miners and energy companies offset weakness in the retail and healthcare sectors.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index rose 5.4 points, or 0.09 per cent, at 6,135.8 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index was up five points, or 0.08 per cent, at 6,241.5 points.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar has dropped nearly a third of a US cent.

Mr Speizer said the Aussie dollar had been thwarted by a stronger US dollar, and fell from 78.60 to 78.08 US cents.

The local currency was trading at 78.24 US cents at 0700 AEDT on Wednesday, from 78.54 on Tuesday.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 78.24 US cents, from 78.54 on Tuesday

* 88.12 Japanese yen, from 88.50 yen

* 65.58 euro cents, from 65.64 euro cents

* 57.81 British pence, from 57.86 pence

* 109.09 NZ cents, from 109.31 cents

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEDT was $US1313.68 per fine ounce, from $US1,319.20 per fine ounce on Tuesday.

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 2,0017pct, unchanged

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.6214pct, unchanged

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* March 2018 10-year bond futures contract at 97.285 (implying a yield of 2.715pct), from 97.325 (implying a yield of 2.675pct) on Tuesday

* March 2018 3-year bond futures contract at 97.850 (2.150pct), from 97.865 (2.135pct)

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