The Australian market kicked off the new trading week on a positive note, with the All Ordinaries Index (XAO) up around 25 points at the start of trade. The Asian markets have followed the steady gains in United States and European markets on Friday. US share markets rose supported by firm economic data and earnings results. While over the weekend China’s State media outlet unveiled new trade tariffs on 5,207 US goods including Liquefied Natural Gas and aircraft, totalling US$60 billion. But it does not seem to have rattled the markets too much in the morning session.
Volumes on the ASX have been lighter than usual in the morning session as the NSW bank holiday has reduced orders. By lunch the ASX 200 Index listed a 40 point gain at 6,275.7 points and the XAO had lifted by 30 points. The best performing sectors at lunch were the Mining and Banking sectors. In the material space BHP Billiton (BHP) lifted by 2.1% and Argosy Minerals (AGY) rallied over 36% after announcing a significant milestone in confirmation of ‘battery grade’ 99.6% LCE product achieved from Argosy’s Rincon Lithium Project.
In company news, global packaging company, Amcor (AMC) has been placed in a trading halt pending an announcement that could be confirmation on market rumours on confirmation that Amcor is looking to buy its US based rival Bemis Co.
Downer EDI (DOW) told the market today that the firm had been awarded a 3 year contract, worth $120 million, to supply services at a copper mine in Cobar NSW operated by a Glencore subsidiary. DOW share price down 0.6%
Australian based retail property group Vicinity Centres (VCX) has entered into a memorandum of understanding with, an asset management of, shipbuilder Keppel Corp to establish a private fund. VCX up 1.5%.
Online employment classifieds platform Seek Limited (SEK) announced a total of $142 million in significant items that will be part reported in Seeks full year 2018 (FY18) result and confirmed it now expects FY18 Net Profit After Tax to reach $230 million, SEK share price fell by 8.9% on the news.
Australian job advertisements have just been released showing job ads rose by 1.5% in July after falling 1.7% in June with job ads are up 7.3% on the year.
The Aussie dollar continues to trade around the 74 US cent mark. 
Published by Juliana Roadley – Market Analyst (Author) CommSec