The Australian market looks set to open higher later this morning, following Wall Street’s rise overnight, as gains by Apple and Disney lifted the Dow ahead of the release of the Federal Reserve’s minutes.
The SPI futures contract is up 10 points, at 5312.
In local economic news today, the Reserve Bank of Australia releases the minutes of its August board meeting while the Australian Bureau of Statistics releases new motor vehicles sales figures for July.
Meanwhile, the ANZ-Roy Morgan weekly consumer confidence survey is due out.
In equities news, Asciano, GWA Group, Dick Smith, Ainsworth Game Technology, Hills, Sonic Healthcare are among the companies slated to post full year results.
Iluka Resources, QBE Insurance, Invocare, GPT are slated to release half year results, while Thorn Group has its annual general meeting.
The ANZ is expected to release a quarterly trading update.
– SPI futures up 10pts at 5312
– AUD at 73.69 US cents, 91.73 Japanese yen, 66.55 Euro cents and 47.31 British pence
– On Wall St, S&P 500 +0.5%, Dow +0.4%, Nasdaq +0.9%
– In Europe, Stoxx 50 +0.2%, FTSE flat, CAC 0.6%, DAX -0.4%
– Spot gold up $US2.38 or 0.3% to $US1117.45 an ounce
– Iron ore slips 0.1% to $US56.66 per tonne
– Brent crude down 52 US cents, or 1.1% to $US48.67 a barrel
What’s on today:
Australia Reserve Bank board minutes are released, new car sales; US housing starts
Stocks in focus:
ASX earnings reports: QBE Insurance, Iluka Resources, ANZ Banking Group, Sonic Healthcare, Challenger, Sydney Airport, Invocare, Asciano
Goldman Sachs has a buy on South32 and a 12-month target price of $2 a share. “The upcoming results (August 27) will be a chance for S32 management to address some of the uncertainties and variances in the market’s expectations.”
Sims Metal Management is upgraded to “neutral” from “underperform” at Credit Suisse with a 12-month target price dropped to $9.50 a share, from $10.85 previously. Sims reports earnings on August 21.