The Australian share market shrugged off a weaker session on Wall Street to finish higher on Thursday. Data showing a fall in Aussie jobs in December raised hopes that the rate hiking cycle may be nearing a peak. The S&P/ASX 200 index rose by 42 points or 0.6 per cent.
In overseas markets on Wednesday, key indexes in the US were weaker with the Dow Jones down 1.8 per cent, S&P 500 down 1.6 per cent and Nasdaq weaker by 1.2 per cent. But the European FTSEurofirst index rose 0.3 per cent.
In Australia on Thursday nine of 12 industry sectors posted gains. Information Technology fell by 0.9 per cent but Materials rose by 1.0 per cent.
Shares in BHP Group (BHP) rose 1.2 per cent after it said that production guidance remained unchanged. BHP noted “we are seeing the impact of inflation across our global supply chains and continue to focus on productivity and controllable costs.” However it expects “China will be a stabilising force when it comes to commodity demand in the 2023 calendar year.”
Shares of global software company Nuix (NXL) rose by 14.6 per cent. NXL expects its net profit to be ‘materially higher’ in the half year ended 31 Dec 2022 thanks in part to ‘significantly lower’ legal costs over the half.
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After releasing quarterly production reports, shares in Paladin (PDN) fell 5.8 per cent while shares in Santos (STO) fell 1.6 per cent.
AGL Energy (AGL) has appointed Damien Nicks as Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Shares in AGL Energy fell by 0.4 per cent.
Shares in Nanosonics (NAN) rose 9 per cent after the company raised guidance on revenues and gross margin for the full 2022/23 year.
On Thursday, 2.6 billion shares were traded, worth $6.4 billion. Overall 611 stocks rose over the session, while 715 fell and 453 finished unchanged.
In terms of economic data, employment fell by 14,600 in December, short of market forecasts tipping a 25,000 lift in jobs.
In the US, data on housing starts, building permits and jobless claims are scheduled on Thursday with the Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index. Fed Vice Chair Lael Brainard speaks. Netflix and Procter & Gamble release earnings.
Originally published by Craig James – Chief Economist (Author), CommSec