AUSTRALIAN STOCKS NOSE AHEAD: Here's what you need to know

Thierry Zoccolan/AFP/Getty Images

Australian stocks continued their march higher.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • ASX 200: 5,794.50 +22.36 +0.39%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,864.10 +23.30 +0.40%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7816 +0.0028 +0.36%

The local market gained ground, testing the upper limits of the 5700 point mark on the ASX200, not quite reaching 5800.

The miners fell after a drop in iron ore prices overnight. BHP was down 1.5% to $26.21 and Rio Tinto 1.4% to $67.81.

The banks gained ground with the NAB up 0.9% to $32.06 and Westpac 0.5% to $32.83.

Pure play online retailer Kogan.com was up 6.9% to $4.81 after a broker upgrade.

Top stories:

1. Mantra approves $1.2 billion sale to AccorHotels. Mantra’s board notified the ASX this morning that it had entered into a binding agreement with AccorHotels.

2. Investors stage a comeback. Australian home loan lending hits a record high.

3. The Bank of Queensland is paying a special dividend. The bank lifted full year cash earnings by 5% to $378 million. Its shares added 1.1% to $13.09.

4. Bellamy’s upgrades its profit guidance. Better than expected revenue growth for its infant formula business. Its shares were up 4.6% to $10.23.

5. The IMF has temporarily downgraded Australia’s economic growth prospects. The IMF says 2017 growth in Australia will be just 2.2%, down from the January forecast of 3% and from the 2.5% in 2016.

6. FLAMIN’ GALAH: A hacker named Alf stole 30GB of Australian military data, including F-35 details.

7. Amazon’s arrival in Australia could spark a showdown with the ATO. Questions are being asked about how this US giant with a reputation for tax avoidance in the UK and Europe will navigate the Australian taxation system.

8. A Brisbane energy tech startup just raised $9 million. Redback Technologies has completed a capital raising round from Right Click Capital and the Clean Energy Innovation Fund.

9. Australian cities might not be as liveable as the rest of the world thinks. A report from RMIT University, the culmination of five years of research, is the first baseline measure of liveability in Australia’s state and territory capitals.

10. The golden role of mentoring: SHUT UP AND LISTEN.

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