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Overseas Market Report -U.S. Stocks End Slightly Lower on Healthcare Vote Delay

Thursday 23 March 2017 | Close

U.S. markets closed lower on Thursday after a volatile session, weighed down by losses in healthcare and materials stocks.

Thursday 23 March 2017 | Close

Foreign Equities Close Change %Change
Dow Jones (US) 20657 -5 -0.02
S&P 500 2346 -2 -0.11
NASDAQ 5818 -4 -0.07
FTSE 100 Index 7341 16 0.22
DAX 30 12040 136 1.14
CAC 40 5033 38 0.76
Nikkei 225 (Japan) 19085 44 0.23
HKSE 24328 7 0.03
SSE Composite Index 3249 3 0.10
NZ 50 7063 -12 -0.17

Thursday 23 March 2017 | Close

Commodities US$ Close Change %Change
Aluminium /t 1923 11 0.58
Copper /t 5798 18 0.30
Nickel /t 9968 12 0.12
Gold /oz 1245 -5 -0.41
Silver /oz 17.6 0.1 0.40
Oil - West Texas crude /bbl 47.7 -0.4 -0.77
Lead /t 2363 -5 -0.20
Zinc /t 2795 -41 -1.46

Thursday 23 March 2017 | Close

Currency Close Pts Change % Change
$A vs $US 0.7627 -0.0041 -0.53
$A vs GBP 0.6088 -0.0056 -0.91
$A vs YEN 84.64 -0.74 -0.87
$A vs EUR 0.7069 -0.0033 -0.47
$A vs $NZ 1.0855 -0.0036 -0.33
$US vs Euro 0.9269 0.0002 0.02
$US vs UK 0.7985 -0.0030 -0.37
$US vs CHF 0.9927 0.0006 0.06

U.S. markets closed lower on Thursday after a volatile session, weighed down by losses in healthcare and materials stocks.

Early trading saw solid gains until news broke that the much-anticipated vote to replace the Affordable Care Act had been delayed, raising doubts about the Trump administration's ability to push the legislation through.

In economic news, first-time jobless claims unexpectedly rose in the latest week, hitting a two-month high, up 15,000 to 258,000.

At the closing bell, the Dow Jones had slipped 0.02%, and the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq were both down around 0.1%.

In its fiscal third quarter ended February, Cintas (CTAS) grew its top line by 6.5% organically. Revenue growth was primarily in line with expectations. Total profitability came in slightly ahead of expectations due to healthy rental gross margins.

For Australian ADRs listed on the NYSE, BHP Billiton slipped 25 cents (-0.67%) to $36.82, ResMed gained 3 cents (0.04%) to $71.31, Telstra Corporation lost 20 cents (-1.15%) to $17.24, Spark New Zealand added 2 cents (0.17%) to $12.00 and Westpac declined 33 cents (-1.28%) to $25.51.

At 8:00AM (AEDT), the 10-year Treasury note yield was 2.42% and the 5-year yield was 1.95%.

European markets ended higher on Thursday.

The FTSE 100, the French CAC 40, and Germany's DAX rose 0.2%, 0.8%, and 1.1%, respectively.

Asian markets also rose on Thursday.

The Hang Seng remained flat, the Nikkei 225 rose 0.2%, and the Shanghai Composite rose 0.1%. India's Sensex rose 0.6%.

Australian Market

Local Markets Expected to Open Higher

Ahead of the local open, SPI futures were 5 points higher at 5,712.

Thursday 23 March - close. The Australian market finished sharply higher, snapping a three-day losing streak, with overnight gains on Wall Street and a recovery in resource stocks helping the benchmark index recoup the massive losses incurred on Wednesday. Most sectors ended with positive results, with the exception of information technology and telecommunication services. The Australian dollar depreciated against most major currencies.

The All Ordinaries added 22.00 points to 5,754.00 while the S&P/ASX 200 climbed 23.50 points to 5,708.00.

Caltex Australia (CTX)

Caltex advised its realised lagged Caltex Refiner Margin (CRM), in respect of CRM sales from production for the month of February 2017. The February 2017 unlagged CRM was US$12.54/bbl. This is above the prior month (January 2017: US$12.08/bbl) and prior year monthly comparative (US$8.30/bbl). The unlagged company's Singapore Weighted Average Margin was US$13.40/bbl, which is above the prior month (January 2017: US$12.82/bbl) and prior year (February 2016: US$10.01/bbl). Sales from production in February 2017 of 425 ML were below the prior month (January 2017: 501 ML) and prior year comparative (February 2016: 435 ML). CTX gained 39 cents to $28.28.

Brickworks Limited (BKW)

Brickworks announced review of results for the half year to January 2017. It posted a statutory NPAT for the half year ended 31 January 2017 of $104m up 35.4% on the prior corresponding period. Record underlying NPAT of $111.2m was up 48.3% from $75.0m for the half year ended 31 January 2016. On record sales revenue of $370.2m, Building Product segment EBIT was $33.3m up 2.1% on the prior corresponding period. Improved margins and sales volume delivered increased earnings on the east coast. Total borrowing costs were down 14.7% to $5.8m including the gain in mark-to-market valuation of swaps. Underlying interest cover was a conservative 19.2 times at 31 January 2017. Total cash flow from operating activities was $49.8m, down from $92.0m in the prior corresponding period. BKW added 1 cent to $13.77.

Annual General Meetings today (ASX 300)

  • No Annual General Meetings today

Companies trading ex-dividend today (ASX 300)

  • Myer Holdings Limited

Companies trading ex-dividend next business day (ASX 300)

  • Adelaide Brighton Limited
  • IMF Bentham Limited
  • Japara Healthcare Limited

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