Here are the stories from the S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX: XJO)(ASX: XJO) and Australian finance circles today. Rask Media has your financial news sorted.
First, here are the data points:
Australian Dollar ($A) (AUDUSD): 73.77 US cents
Dow Jones (DJI) (Friday): up 0.8%
Oil (WTI): $US50.72 per barrel
Gold: $US1,222 per ounce
Making economic headlines this week, we have the RBA’s interest rate decision on Tuesday and its monetary statement later in the week. CBA’s PMI data is due out today and we’ll see some figures on Aussie investor lending on Friday.
In sharemarket news today, the Sydney Futures Exchange is pointing to strongly positive open for the ASX 200. This is possibly a result of the decision by Beijing and the USA to suspend the trade war.
The BBC is reporting that the two economic superpowers have agreed to suspend new trade tariffs. The news will likely buoy Aussie and international sharemarkets on Monday.
BlueScope Steel Ltd (ASX: BSL), the steel producer which spun out of BHP in 2002, announced it will undertake a $250 million share buyback. In an update to the market, BlueScope said it will re-enter the market to buy back some of its own shares after a recent buyback ended.
“As we approach our goal of net cash on the balance sheet of $200 million to $400 million, this announcement forms part of our FY2019 capital management program,” BlueScope CEO Mark Vassella said.
“With the transformed business continuing to generate strong cash flows, we are also able to pursue a mix of investing in the business, acting on appropriate M&A, such as the acquisition of the YKGI assets in Malaysia, and delivering returns to shareholders.”
Also making headlines, supermarket supplier and IGA owner, Metcash Limited (ASX: MTS) released its 2019 half-year financial report to the market showing a 2% increase in revenue and profit up 3% to $95.8 million.
“The first half results were pleasing in the face of challenging market conditions, with the Group delivering improved sales and earnings,” CEO Jeff Adams noted. “It was pleasing to see all Pillars contribute to the improved results, with additional synergies from the HTH acquisition being a key driver of increased earnings in the Hardware Pillar.”
Metcash’s board announced a half yearly dividend of 6.5 cents per share fully franked.
Finally, Canberra-based software company Citadel Group Ltd (ASX: CGL) announced the acquisition of software business Gruden Pty Ltd for $1.65 million.
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