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S&P/ASX 200 Expected To Open Slightly Lower

The Australian share market or S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX: XJO)(ASX: XJO) index is set for a slightly lower open Wednesday morning, according to data from Sydney Futures Exchange, with a2 Milk Company Ltd (Australia) (ASX: A2M) in the news.

Here’s the key headline data:

Australian Dollar ($A) (AUDUSD): 74.69 US cents

Dow Jones (DJI): down 0.8%

Oil (WTI): $US70.95 per barrel

Gold: $US1,292 per ounce

Overnight, London-listed shares of BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) finished 0.5% and 0.3% lower, respectively, according to Yahoo! Finance.

Australian Investing News

Making news in Australia, dairy and infant formula business a2 Milk Company released a trading update to the ASX this morning.

In its public filing, a2 Milk Company confirmed its revenue for the nine months to 31 March 2018 was $NZ660 million, up around 70% on the prior corresponding period. a2 Milk Company said the improved sales result reflected growth in both nutritional products and milk.

Looking towards the future a2 Milk Company expects to report revenue of between NZ$900 million and NZ$920 million for the year to 30 June 2018. Read the news here: a2 Milk Company Revenue To Reach $NZ900m

Also in the news, Fletcher Building Limited (ASX: FBU) announced the successful completion of the retail component of its share sale to investors. The offer to retail investors raised NZ$229.5 million with the new shares issued at $NZ4.80.

Around 20 million shares which were not bought by retail investors were purchased by institutional and new investors.

“The completion of the entitlement offer means we can now significantly reduce group debt and improve the capital structure of Fletcher Building,” Fletcher Building CEO Ross Taylor said. “This puts us in a stronger position to focus our portfolio and pursue a new group strategy, and we look forward to briefing the market on this in more detail in June.”

Computershare Limited (ASX: CPU) announced it will buy European share plans company Equatex Group Holding AG for EUR354.5 million ($560 million). Computershare said the deal will be funded by cash and existing debt facilities and should have a positive management earnings per share impact in its 2019 financial year results.

“We are excited by the acquisition of Equatex,” Computershare CEO Stuart Irving said. “It is firmly within our core competencies and is a compelling strategic fit with our existing Employee Share Plans business.” 

Finally, Downer EDI Limited (ASX: DOW) announced it has completed a combined $1.3 billion debt refinancing for itself and Spotless Group Holdings Limited (ASX: SPO). Following a takeover offer in 2017 Downer owns a substantial majority of Spotless Group shares.

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