Views Article – Sharenet Wealth

Australasia, News

Australia shares poised to wrap up fourth week of gains on muted note

April 16 (Reuters) – Australian shares struggled for direction on Friday, a day after marking their highest close in nearly 14 months, as gains in mining and gold stocks countered losses in energy names.

The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.07% to 7,054 in early trade, but was on track to post its fourth straight weekly gain.

Energy stocks were the biggest drag on the benchmark index, down 0.84​%, despite crude oil scaling fresh four-week highs on improving demand outlook.

Origin Energy Ltd led losses on the sub-index with a drop of 2.98%, after cutting its annual profit guidance for its energy markets division.

Gold stocks rose 3.7%, capping losses on the benchmark index. Silver Lake Resources Ltd jumped 5.6%, followed by Red 5 Ltd, up 5.41​%.

Overnight, bullion prices scaled a more than one-month peak as U.S. Treasury yields slipped.

Australian miners rose as much as 0.7% after iron ore prices recovered from losses on strong demand in the previous session.

Tech stocks climbed 0.7%, led by a 5.2% jump in Altium Ltd and 2.3% gain in Appen, after a tech-led Wall Street rally that was fuelled by falling bond yields and strong March U.S. retail sales.

In New Zealand, the benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.38% to 12,684.6. Napier Port led the gains, climbing as much as 2.3%, as it raised its outlook on bright market conditions. (Reporting by Savyata Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

© 2019 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved. Reuters content is the intellectual property of Thomson Reuters or its third party content providers. Any copying, republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Thomson Reuters. Thomson Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. "Reuters" and the Reuters Logo are trademarks of Thomson Reuters and its affiliated companies.