AUSTRALIAN STOCKS LIFT AGAIN: Here's what you need to know

Photo: Sergio Camacho/Getty Images

Australian stocks closed higher.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • ASX200: 6,049.40 +33.13 +0.55%
  • All Ordinaries: 6,122.40 +33.25 +0.55%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7681 +0.0001 +0.01%

The local market added to its margin above 6000 on the ASX200 index.

The main drag on the market was the NAB, which went ex-dividend, down 3.3% to $30.58.

The other major banks added weight with Westpac up 1.3% to $33.17.

The miners gained from a rise in commodity prices. Rio Tinto was up 0.5% to $74.64.

Building products group James Hardie was up 7.6% to $20.39 after reporting a 14% drop in first half net profit to $US123.8 million but saying it expects steady growth in the US housing market.

Top stories:

1. Sydney housing. Owners have “unrealistic expectations” amid a slowdown in the property market.

2. Xero is earnings positive for the first time. The cloud-based subscription accountancy package still isn’t making a profit but future expansion will now be funded internally from cash flow rather than by capital. Its shares closed at $30.59, down 1.2%.

3. Flight Centre upgraded its profit forecast for 2018. The company is tracking to an underlying first half profit before tax of a $120 million to $135 million, 6% to 19% higher than the same six months last year. Its shares closed at $47.45, up 1.9%.

4. Regenerative medicine export. Orthocell gets approval to sell its dental bone and soft tissue regeneration solution in Europe. Its shares surged 19.3% to close at $0.37.

5. Amazon approaches. Another Australian retailer says it’s doing nothing to prepare for Amazon’s arrival.

6. Sticking to the internet slow lane. That’s where most NBN users are.

7. Justin Hemmes’ Merivale empire just bought a Bondi pub. The privately-owned Sydney hospitality group confirmed its purchase of the Royal Hotel Bondi in another multi-million dollar deal.

8. Top eating. Simon Thomsen’s 12 favourite Australian restaurants of 2017.

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