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Overseas Market Report -U.S. Shares Eke Out Gains Ahead of Earnings Deluge

Thursday 27 April 2017 | Close

U.S. markets managed to finish higher on Thursday but gains were capped following a fall in oil prices, and as investors remained uncertain as to how President Donald Trump's tax plan will be funded.

Thursday 27 April 2017 | Close

Foreign Equities Close Change %Change
Dow Jones (US) 20981 6 0.03
S&P 500 2389 1 0.06
NASDAQ 6049 24 0.39
FTSE 100 Index 7237 -52 -0.71
DAX 30 12444 -29 -0.23
CAC 40 5272 -16 -0.31
Nikkei 225 (Japan) 19252 -38 -0.19
HKSE 24698 120 0.49
SSE Composite Index 3152 11 0.36
NZ 50 7355 19 0.27

Thursday 27 April 2017 | Close

Commodities US$ Close Change %Change
Aluminium /t 1915 -41 -2.11
Copper /t 5669 -20 -0.36
Nickel /t 9288 109 1.18
Gold /oz 1264 1 0.04
Silver /oz 17.3 -0.2 -0.95
Oil - West Texas crude /bbl 49.2 0.2 0.43
Lead /t 2218 29 1.32
Zinc /t 2591 -24 -0.94

Thursday 27 April 2017 | Close

Currency Close Pts Change % Change
$A vs $US 0.7464 -0.0015 -0.20
$A vs GBP 0.5783 -0.0037 -0.63
$A vs YEN 83.08 -0.10 -0.12
$A vs EUR 0.6864 0.0009 0.13
$A vs $NZ 1.0851 0.0014 0.13
$US vs Euro 0.9196 0.0031 0.34
$US vs UK 0.7750 -0.0033 -0.43
$US vs CHF 0.9942 0.0012 0.12

U.S. markets managed to finish higher on Thursday but gains were capped following a fall in oil prices, and as investors remained uncertain as to how President Donald Trump's tax plan will be funded.

Eyes were also on the ongoing earnings season, as moderate gains in technology shares pushed the Nasdaq Composite to close at a record high ahead of releases from companies such as Alphabet, Microsoft and Amazon.com.

At the closing bell, the Dow Jones was static, the S&P 500 was up 0.1%, while the Nasdaq finished 0.4% higher.

American Airlines Group Inc. (AAL) shares slumped 5.2% after the air carrier reported first-quarter results, and announced a pay increase for crew members.

Ford Motor Co. (F) fell 1.1% even after the car giant's earnings and revenue topped Wall Street forecasts.

Shares of PayPal Holdings Inc. (PYPL) rallied 6.9% after the online-payments company beat earnings expectations.

For Australian ADRs listed on the NYSE, BHP Billiton fell 104 cents (-2.88%) to $35.01, ResMed gained 110 cents (1.53%) to $72.85, Telstra Corporation lost 14 cents (-0.85%) to $15.73, Spark New Zealand dropped 2 cents (-0.16%) to $12.69, and Westpac rose 51 cents (1.97%) to $26.42.

At 7:45 AM (AEDT), the 10-year Treasury note yield was 2.29% and the 5-year yield was 1.82%.

European markets fell on Thursday.

The FTSE 100 was down 0.7%, the French CAC 40 ended 0.3% lower, while Germany's DAX fell by 0.2%.

Asian markets were mixed.

The Hang Seng was up 0.5%, the Nikkei 225 was down 0.2%, while the Shanghai Composite ended 0.4% higher. India's Sensex finished 0.3% lower.

Australian Market

Local Markets Expected to Open Lower

Ahead of the local open, SPI futures were 4 points lower at 5,905.

Thursday 27 April - close. The Australian market opened slightly lower this morning, following a soft lead from the U.S. market overnight. The ASX 200 index swung between gains and losses until an afternoon rally led by the big banks helped the market post moderate profits. There were mixed results from the sectors; healthcare gained most significantly while energy was the biggest laggard. The Australian dollar appreciated against the greenback but had mixed results against other major currencies.

The All Ordinaries added 7.60 points to 5,944.40 while the S&P/ASX 200 rose 9.50 points to 5,921.50.

Blackmores Limited (BKL)

Blackmores announced group sales of $496m for the first nine months of FY17, down 6.7% compared to the prior corresponding period. NPAT of $43m was down 42.8%. The company's Greater Asia region, excluding China, generated sales of $62m, excluding Korea, which is in the process of completing a transition to a new distribution model, while core markets in Asia were up 14%. The company signed a distribution agreement with the Mesa Group, Vietnam's distribution company with a network of 150,000 retail stores. The company and Mesa will launch a range of 13 products in the coming months. BKL lifted $3.96 to $106.49.

Stockland (SGP)

Stockland delivered a solid third quarter performance across its diversified property business and has maintained FY17 guidance for growth in Funds from Operations (FFO) per security of 6-7%, assuming no material change in market conditions. It remains on track to achieve FY17 distribution per security (DPS) of 25.5c, based on the higher of Total Trust Income or 75-85% of FFO, up 4.1% on FY16. Its Residential business achieved 1,891 net deposits in the quarter and 5,984 net deposits in the financial year to date, compared to a total of 4,844 net deposits up to the corresponding point in time in 2016. Its Retirement Living business achieved 244 net reservations in the quarter. SGP gained 3 cents to $4.91.

Wesfarmers Limited (WES)

Wesfarmers announced its retail sales results for the third quarter of 2017. Coles headline food and liquor sales increased by 1.2% during the quarter, with the business investing more in the customer offer. Bunnings Australia and NZ achieved total sales growth of 7.7% during the quarter. In the UK and Ireland, further progress has been made on transition, separation and integration activities following the Homebase acquisition. Kmart's total sales increased 2.5%, extending the performance achieved in the prior period, with further price investments made during the period. Target continued to progress its transition to everyday low prices, recording a decline in total sales of 18.1% during the quarter. WES slid 64 cents to $43.30.

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