The ASX was up 52pts, or 0.90 per cent, at 5662.3pts on Thursday. The Health Care sector made another day of strong gains, rising 2.05 per cent. The Materials and Metals and Mining sectors, which had previously brought the market down, bounced backed and rose 1.48 and 1.22 per cent respectively. Australian shares jumped in the opening hours of trading. The ASX retreated slightly around noon, but bounced back remained around its peak for the remainder of the day. The Australian dollar has recovered slightly after dropping the last few days. However, it has not broken past the US$0.80 mark again. The AUD is trading around US$0.7898 around 4:21pm AEDT.
International markets were mixed in the previous day of trading. In the US, the Dow Jones was down 0.15 per cent and the S&P 500 was down 0.09 per cent. In Europe, the DAX fell 0.04 per cent and the FTSE 100 rose 0.17 per cent. The Nikkei 225’s recent rally has cooled off after breaking past the 20,000 point mark. It is up 0.03 per cent near the end of trading on Thursday. In China, the Hang Seng has faced headwinds as solar power giant Hanergy Thin Film Power’s share price plummeted 47 per cent. The Hang Seng is down 0.51 per cent so far on Thursday. The Shanghai Composite is up 0.64 per cent so far on Thursday.
James Hardie Industries (ASX:JHX) was up $1.76, or 11.56 per cent, at $16.98 per share. James Haride reported a 12 per cent increase in profits for the full year and a 26 per cent increase in quarterly profits.
Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) was up 54c, or 1.57 per cent, at $34.87 per share. Woodside reported that it would accelerate its cost cutting program and move the savings into acquisitions for future growth.
Cardno Limited (ASX:CDD) was down 14c, or 5.6 per cent, at $2.36 per share. Candro’s shares fell once again after reporting a $200m writedown on Wednesday.
National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB) was down 18c, or .54 per cent, at $33.38 per share. Despite the gains in the Financials sector, NAB reversed the trend and closed lower.
Author: Imran Valibhoy
May 21, 2015
Since Joining the firm in 2006, Imran has worked on a range of M&A and Capital Market transactions in the natural resources, mining as well as projects in the renewable energy sector. Prior to joining Wise-owl, Imran worked at Euroz Securities in Perth, aiding in the advisory and valuation of companies in the mining and industrial sectors in Australia. Imran has a Masters in Banking & Finance from City University's Class Business School in London and a Bacheloor degree in Commerce from UWA.