Australia Shares Higher at Close of Trade and Shares in Asia Mix with China


After the close on Monday, Australia stocks were higher as gains in the Gold, Energy and Telecoms Services  sectors led shares higher.

At the close in Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 increased 0.29% to reach a new 52-week peak.

The best performers of the session on the S&P/ASX 200 were Vocus Fpo (AX:VOC), which increase 6.42% or 0.260 points to trade at 4.310 at the close. Temporarily, St Barbara Ltd (AX:SBM) added 5.00% or 0.105 points to end at 2.205 and Saracen Mineral Holdings Ltd (AX:SAR) was up 4.43% or 0.045 points to 1.060 in late trade.

The poorest performers of the session were Orocobre Ltd (AX:ORE), which drop 2.97% or 0.130 points to trade at 4.240 at the close. Macquarie Atlas Roads Group (AX:MQA) fell 2.19% or 0.110 points to end at 4.910 and Qube Holdings Ltd (AX:QUB) declined 2.05% or 0.050 points to 2.390.

Increasing stocks outnumbered  decreasing ones on the Australian Stock Exchange by 563 to 438 and 326 ended unmoved.

The S&P/ASX 200 VIX, which gauges the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200 options, declined 1.16% to 12.728.

Delivery of gold for February increased 1.00% or 11.70 to $1177.00 a troy ounce. Somewhere else in commodities trading, delivery of crude oil in February fell 0.06% or 0.03 to hit $53.23 a barrel, although the March Brent oil agreement declines 0.14% or 0.08 to trade at $56.38 a barrel.

AUD/USD increased 0.49% to 0.7318, while AUD/JPY dropped 0.46% to 85.00.

The US Dollar Index declined 0.59% at 101.89.

On Additional News

On Thursday, Asian shares were mixed  with mainland China and Hong Kong gaining on a solid services PMI reading, although Japan inched down as the greenback weakened suddenly and into Asia from 14-year peaks against a basket of currencies as investors start to cast uncertainty the Fed would increase rates three times this year.

The Shanghai Composite Index increased 0.08%, although Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was last up 1.04%. On Thursday, the yuan increased to its highest level compared to the greenback in three weeks after the People’s Bank of China set a stronger fixing at 6.9307, compared with a fixing of 6.9526 Wednesday.

The Nikkei 225 dropped 0.33%, while the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.30%.

“Fed Reserve minutes as investors said that the forecast of as many as three rate hikes in 2017 is highly variable on President-elect Donald Trump getting an aggressive tax cut and spending plan through Congress,” according to the reports.

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