AUSTRALIAN STOCKS PICK UP: What you need to know

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Australian shares closed higher.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,692.20 +13.45 +0.24%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,745.40 +11.67 +0.20%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7519 +0.0012 +0.16%

The local market picked up after two straight sessions of falls but didn’t quite regain the 5700 point level on the ASX200.

The miners kept the market above water while the banks dragged. The ANZ was down 0.7% to $29.89 while BHP was up 06% to $26.69.

Pure play iron ore miner Fortescue Metals was up 2.4% to $6.25 after Moody’s upgraded the company’s corporate rating to Ba1.

Sims Metals added 3.2% to $12.90 after the scrap metal company upgraded its earnings guidance partly on better prices for steel and other metals. dipped 2.8% to $10.90 after the CEO Greg Roebuck stepped down after 15 years. Cameron McIntyre, the COO, is taking over.

Droneshield was up 3.6% to $0.43 after it announced winning the contract to keep the Boston Marathon safe from drone attack for the third year.

The top stories:

1. Vegemite returns to Australian hands. Bega Cheese pays $460 million for the brands and plant of the Australian and New Zealand arm of US-based global food giant Mondelez International. Bega shares closed 15% higher at $5.16.

2. Unemployment ticks up. However, employment rose by 13,500 in December in seasonally adjusted terms, topping expectations for an increase of 10,000.

3. NSW premier Mike Baird quits. He’s going after after just three years leading the government of Australia’s largest state. Also read: Baird’s resignation means the state now matches federal politics for leadership churn.

4. Homeowners have more equity now. The housing boom has had a positive impact for those Australians with a mortgage.

5. CSL shares smash through $100 again. The blood products and flu vaccine company today upgraded its full year profit guidance after better than expected sales. CSL shares closed 12.4% higher at $111.50.

6. Bellamy’s take the battle to the Black Prince. The troubled infant formula maker, whose sales to China have stalled, today hit back at its biggest shareholder which wants to replace the company’s board of directors. Bellamy’s shares lost another 2.4% to close at $3.93.

7. 5 reasons Australian banks might lift rates. Two of Australia’s major banks this month increased a range of fixed home loan rates by as much as 0.6%.

8. The Australian-bred hoverbike and the US Army. Chris Malloy’s dream of humans riding hoverbikes is a little bit further down the path to reality.

9. The Feng Shui financial forecast for 2017. CLSA’s take on the Chinese Year of the Rooster.

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