Australian shares have closed flat, despite strong individual performances from Telstra, Treasury Wine Estates and QBE as materials and energy stocks come under pressure.
Thursday, 16th August, 2018
The ASX200 closed down 0.7 points, or 0.01 percent, at 6,328.3 points , while the All Ordinaries was down 3.1 points, or 0.05 percent, at 6,412.6 points.
Shares fell from the open as an overnight slide in crude oil prices compounded losses on Wall Street, while a four per cent drop in Chinese iron ore futures hit major miners BHP and Rio Tinto. BHP closed 2.6 percent lower at $32.84 while Rio Tinto shed 1.1 percent to $72.92. The IT sector bounced however as shares in Telstra jumped 5.9 percent to a three-month high of $3.06, despite the telco giant posting an 8.4 percent drop in full-year profit to $3.56 billion and delivering a shrunken final dividend. Insurer QBE jumped 6.8 percent to $10.89 on a half-year profit result boosted four percent to $496 million. Origin Energy Ltd fell 6.4 percent to $9.09 despite lifting full-year revenue by seven percent to $14.8 billion and more than doubling underlying profit on the back of improved performance in its retail and gas production operations. Australia's biggest winemaker, Treasury Wine Estates, jumped 4.5 percent to $19.41 as its focus on premium wines lifted full-year profit 34 percent to $360.3 million.
Asian markets were lower as trade tension worries continue on world markets. Locally the under-pressure Australian dollar got a bounce from official jobs data showing a suprise drop in the unemployment rate to 5.3 per cent in July, down from 5.4 percent. The Aussie dollar was at 72.69 US cents, up from 72.30 US cents on Wednesday.
|Equities / Fixed Interest||Close||Change||% Change|
|Currency||Close||Pts Change||% Change|
|$A vs $US||0.7261||0.0030||0.42|
|$A vs GBP||0.56714||
|$A vs EUR||0.6388||0.0011||0.17|
|$A vs YEN||80.51||0.53||0.66|
|$A vs $NZ||