AUSTRALIAN STOCKS END THE WEEK WHERE THEY STARTED: Here's what you need to know

James D. Morgan/Getty Images for P & O Cruises Australia

Australian stocks closed higher today but ended the week flat.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • ASX200: 5,994.40 +16.68 +0.28%
  • All Ordinaries: 6,077.40 +16.59 +0.27%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7511 +0.0001 +0.01%

The local market broke through the 6000 mark on the ASX200 but fell back again.

The index ended the week almost where it started.

Today Macquarie Group added 1.9% to close at $98.65. Most of the major banks were also ahead with the Commonwealth up 0.8% to $79.62.

Fairfax Media was up 5.6% to $0.745.

AGL was up 1.4% to $25.82 after a broker upgrade.

Top stories:

1. Australia’s cryptocurrency billionaire. James Gilbert is now technically a billionaire after Bitcoin’s unprecedented price surge this week.

2. Lending to housing investors rose unexpectedly in October. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the value of lending rose by 0.6% to $32.503 billion in October in seasonally adjusted terms.

3. Westpac and the Royal Commission. It will help restore trust in banks.

4. Change of mind. The Australian couple who promised to divorce if same-sex marriage was legalised.

5. Here’s how Australian MPs voted on same-sex marriage. The House of Representatives passed the bill shortly before 6pm yesterday with just four MPs opposing it.

6. 2017 has been a stellar year for Asian stocks. HSBC says there are more gains to come.

7. Oscar winner Geoffrey Rush is suing for defamation. he says he wants to redress the slurs, innuendo and hyperbole around his standing in the entertainment industry.

8. Neuroscience shows millennials aren’t selfish. If we are to believe what we read, we’re looking at a generation of lazy, selfish, entitled and image-obsessed 18–30 year olds.

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