SYDNEY, AAP – Healthcare and technology shares have helped the Australian market to a record high, following similar milestones for US markets.
The ASX200 reached a record 7631.1 points on Friday at the end of an eventful earnings week.
Market giant CSL was a main contributor and was higher by 2.41 per cent to $297.67 at 1200 AEST. The biotech has recovered its losses from the week.
In technology, cargo software vendor WiseTech Global gained almost three per cent to $34.96.
The big miners were limiting the market’s gains. BHP, Fortescue and Rio Tinto were all down by more than one per cent.
China wants to limit steel production for environmental reasons, which has caused the price of iron ore to fall.
Financial shares were a little better.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was higher by 37.9 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 7626.1.
The All Ordinaries was up 35.4 points, or 0.45 per cent, to 7895.9.
In the US, the Dow and S&P 500 had record closing tallies for the third consecutive day.
The number of Americans filing claims for unemployment benefits fell again last week as the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic continued.
US producer prices showed their largest annual increase in more than a decade last month, raising inflation concerns.
In Australia, coronavirus infections continue to spread.
People in the ACT were enduring their first of seven days under stay-at-home orders. They joined millions of others in Melbourne and NSW.
Retailer Baby Bunting said sales were down more than six per cent this financial year due to lockdowns.
The company reported that full-year net profit after tax improved by 76 per cent to $17.5 million.
Shareholders are due a fully franked final dividend of 8.3 cents per share, which is better than the final payout from last year of 6.4 cents per shares.
Stocks were down 4.34 per cent to $5.72.
Clothing retailer Kathmandu has promoted a Rip Curl general manager to chief executive of the surfwear company.
Brooke Farris will take the role next week. She replaces the man who became Kathmandu boss, Michael Daly.
Shares were up 0.95 per cent to $1.32.
Air New Zealand has postponed raising more capital until next year.
The New Zealand government, a major owner, recently unveiled a timeline to help reconnect Kiwis to the world and asked the raise be deferred.
Shares were up 1.07 per cent to $1.41.
Energy retailer and generator AGL bounced back after the gloom of its full-year net loss a day earlier.
AGL warned of lower earnings this financial year due to lower energy prices.
However investors on Friday saw a bargain and pushed shares up by 5.15 per cent to $7.55.
The Australian dollar was buying 73.38 US cents at 1200 AEST, lower from 73.61 US cents at Thursday’s close.