Yesterday the ASX200 closed in the red, down 0.55%, as investors took profits from several companies trading ex-dividend.
In New York, all three major indices closed with gains. The S&P500 and the Dow Jones closed higher 0.3% and 0.4% respectively. While the Nasdaq advanced 0.1%.
Following US equities, the SPI futures are suggesting the ASX200 will open 0.2% higher.
What to watch today:
- In economic news, yesterday Australia’s Balance of Trade data was released. In July, trade surplus rose by $1 billion, to a record high of $12.1 billion, after June’s reading was upwardly revised to $11.1b. The $12.1b reading was well above the market consensus of $10.2 billion. And today, the Markit Services PMI for August will be released at 9am AEST.
- Companies going ex-dividend today include Ampol (ASX:ALD), Bendigo and Adelaide Bank (ASX:BEN), Cyclopharm (ASX:CYC), People Infrastructure (ASX:PPE) and Resimac Group (ASX:RMC).
- One of the most traded stocks by Bell Direct clients yesterday was Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG). Its share price was under pressure due to the weakening iron ore price, which fell to a 7-month low this week. Flight Centre (ASX:FLT) was also one of the most traded stocks yesterday, after announcing a joint venture with a travel management business in Japan.
- The oil price is trading 2.4% higher at US$69 a barrel.
- Gold is trading lower at US$1,809 an ounce, awaiting the US government employment report and the Fed’s decision.
- And the iron ore price is trading 1.8% lower at US$140 as China looks to flatline its output of steel.
- Bell Potter have upgraded their rating on biotechnology company Imugene (ASX:IMU) from a HOLD to a Speculative BUY, and have increased their price target from $0.25 to $0.52. The upgrade comes after IMU announced 3 separate studies that have the potential to be attractive to future development partners. IMU closed at $0.30 yesterday, implying 30% share price growth in a year.
- Bullish charting signals have been identified in Azure Minerals (ASX:AZS), HomeCo Daily Needs (ASX:HDN) and BARD1 Life Sciences (ASX:BD1), according to Trading Central.