(IBTimes) - Lunchtime REPORT] (1pm AEST)
The Australian share market closed higher yesterday, with the
All Ordinaries Index (XAO) up 33 points to 4,462 points.
Overnight global markets closed lower after concerns mounted
about how Spain could turn around its economy and create job
growth. After news the Spanish economy had fallen back into
recession in the first quarter of 2012.
It was a very mixed market by lunch time today with investors
awaiting the outcome of The Reserve Bank of Australia's (
) board meeting and interest rate decision due out at 2.30pm
(AEST). At lunchtime the All Ordinaries Index (XAO) was up 27
points to 4,494 points. All market sectors gained ahead of the
RBA's decision with the best performer being the S&P/ASX 200
Energy sector up 1.74 pct.
Miners and energy stocks were helped by the positive news out
of China early this morning that manufacturing, yet again, lifted
in April. The Chinese Official Purchasing Managers´ Index rose to
53.3 in April, up from 53.1 in March, according to data from the
China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing.
But here at home the Australian Industry Group/Pricewaterhouse
performance of manufacturing (PMI) index for April came in lower
than expected down by 5.6 points, to a seven-month low of 43.9 in
April. Any reading below 50 suggests manufacturing is
Oil and gas operator Woodside Petroleum Limited (WPL) told the
market this morning that it had sold a minority stake, 14.7 pct.,
in its proposed Browse gas-export project in Western Australia to
a Japanese consortium called, Japan Australia LNG, for US$2
billion. The WPL share price added over 4 pct. to $36.40 as
investors were happy to see that this will raise cash for
Woodside and help stabilise the project. Santos Limited (
) added 10.7 pct. to $ 14.14 and Origin Energy Limited (ORG) up
1.66 pct. to $ 13.48.
The miners are the biggest contributors to the gains with BHP
) up 1.32 pct. to $36.02 Fortescue Metals Group Limited (FMG)
added 0.5 pct. while Rio Tinto (
) fell by 0.35 pct. to $66.12.
Global property developer Stockland (SGP) realised a group
update today at its investor briefing. Stockland confirmed its
revised full year guidance to the end of June 2012, also adding
it expects to raise $2.9 billion for future investment by selling
office and industrial assets by the end of 2017. SGP lifted 0.32
pct. to $3.11. Dexus Property Group (DXS) also higher up over 2
pct and Goodman Group (GMG) added 2.78 pct.
Our major banks are mostly stronger, but National Australia
Bank (NAB) was negative territory for much of the morning. After
reporting an unaudited first-half net profit to the end of March
of $2.05 billion, down 15.6 pct. compared to this time last year
yesterday. NAB's share price was off 0.24 pct. to $25.17 while
moved higher adding 1.04 pct. to $52.51 and Suncorp Group Limited
) up 1.6 pct. to $8.26.
The Australian dollar (AUD) is buying US104.12 cents and
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