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Aust shares set to open green but flat

Chris Hutchings
AAP

The Australian share market looks set to open in the green but hardly changed.

The Australian share market looks set to open in the green but static, seemingly torn between following a surging US market or Europe's negative lead.

At 0700 AEDT on Friday, the share price futures index was up four points, or 0.07 per cent, at 6,017.

In Europe, shares dipped on Thursday as a bond market sell-off and a stronger euro took the steam out of the breakneck New Year rally in equities.

In the US, Wall Street surged to fresh highs, with energy stocks supported by rising oil prices and airlines helped by an optimistic forecast from its second biggest carrier Delta.

In late afternoon trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.61 per cent, the S&P 500 was up 0.54 per cent, and the Nasdaq was up 0.70 per cent.

Locally, no major economic or equities news is expected on Friday.

The Australian market on Thursday suffered its second consecutive fall amid widespread selling, while stronger-than-expected retail sales growth lifted the Australian dollar.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index fell 29.1 points, or 0.48 per cent, to 6,067.6 points.

The broader All Ordinaries index lost 29.7 points, or 0.48 per cent, to 6,176.2 points.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar is marching toward 79 US cents, extending the gains it made following Thursday's better-than-expected retail trade figures for November.

The local currency was trading at 78.93 US cents at 0700 AEDT on Friday, from 78.74 on Thursday.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 78.93 US cents, from 78.74 on Thursday

* 87.68 Japanese yen, from 88.04 yen

* 65.57 euro cents, from 65.87 euro cents

* 58.31 British pence, from 58.33 pence

* 108.71 NZ cents, from 109.41 cents

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEDT was $US1,323.079 per fine ounce, from $US1,317.78 per fine ounce on Thursday.

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 2.0335pct, unchanged

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.6814pct, unchanged

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* March 2018 10-year bond futures contract at 97.255 (implying a yield of 2.745pct), from 97.265 (implying a yield of 2.735pct) on Thursday

* March 2018 3-year bond futures contract at 97.825 (2.175pct), unchanged

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