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Stocks on Wall Street closed little changed overnight, with the Dow and S&P 500 slipping on disappointing earnings and little hope for a US coronavirus stimulus before Election Day, though the Nasdaq rose ahead of big technology company results.MORE >
Investors have helped the share market to its first gain in five sessions after shrugging off a poor US lead, as their peers worried about coronavirus infections and next week's presidential election.
Wednesday, 28th October, 2020
The ASX200 benchmark index finished up 6.7 points, or 0.11 percent, to 6057.7 on Wednesday. The All Ordinaries closed higher by 15.3 points, or 0.24 percent, to 6262.5.
Shares were lower for the first hour of trade, but then improved. Information technology finished the best sector, up 3.01 percent following Afterpay's first quarter results. Consumer staples was next, up 1.83 percent after Coles showed improved first quarter sales. Materials, which includes the miners, gained 0.22 percent. The other heavyweight sector, financials, ended down 0.9 percent.
Australia recorded a 1.6 percent spike in inflation for the September quarter, attributed to the end of the federal government's free child care package introduced for the coronavirus lockdown. The Australian Bureau of Statistics said the cost of child care added 0.9 percentage points to CPI, and was the largest contributor. It left annual inflation at a meagre 0.7 percent.
On the ASX, Afterpay shares gained 7.28 percent to $102.97 after its first quarter update showed underlying sales improved by 115 percent to $4.1 billion. The vendor has nearly doubled its customers to 11.2 million since the first quarter of last year. Online furniture trader Temple & Webster was one of the best movers of large companies, up 8.01 percent to $10.65. Vitamins supplier Blackmores was the best of the largest players though. It rose 13.66 percent to $72.48. Elsewhere, Coles ended higher by 2.73 percent to $17.68 after reporting a 10 percent increase on first quarter sales compared to the same period last year.
Miners were mixed. BHP lost 0.49 percent to $34.77, Rio Tinto slipped 0.39 percent to $91.94, while Fortescue was up 1.67 percent to $16.48. In banking, ANZ lost 1.74 percent to $19.16, the Commonwealth fell 0.44 percent to $68.45, NAB shed 1.1 percent to $18.88 and Westpac was down 1.35 percent to $18.31.
The Aussie dollar was buying 71.53 US cents at 1707 AEDT, up from 71.35 US cents at the close of trade on Tuesday.
|Equities / Fixed Interest||Close||Change||% Change|
|Currency||Close||Pts Change||% Change|
|$A vs $US||0.7154||0.0031||0.44|
|$A vs GBP||0.5478||
|$A vs EUR||
|$A vs YEN||74.57||0.10||0.14|
|$A vs $NZ||