The Australian market rallied as local investors ignored a weak Wall Street and chased financial stocks higher.
Here’s the scoreboard:
- S&P ASX 200: 5,850.20 +57.00 (+0.98%)
- All Ordinaries: 5,816.00 +52.69 (+0.91%)
- AUD/USD: 0.7600 +0.0002 (+0.03%)
Overnight Wall St went nowhere with the S&P 500 down 0.2%.
On the local market, a small improvement in official jobs numbers was not enough to change the view that there’s another interest rate cut coming.
Nine out of 10 sectors gained ground, led by the financials. The banks were all up by more than 1%, led by Westpac up 1.57% to $38.09. AMP was up 2.44% to $6.71. The miners ended generally flat.
The top stories on Thursday:
1. A short runway, a steep climb. Qantas shares hit $3 for the first time in six years. Its shares closed at $3.02, up 2.72% on the day.
2. Jobs. A solid number for February, with 15,600 jobs added and a slight fall to 6.3% in the unemployment rate. All of which was not enough to change the expectation of further official interest rate cuts.
3. The economy. There’s a new theory on why low interest rates aren’t working and it’s all tied to the rise of China.
4. Cutting debt servicing. Whitehaven Coal has refinanced from a syndicate of Australian and international banks at a lower rate than its existing debt. It shares closed up 2.89% to $1.60.