EVENING REPORT (5pm AEST)
The Australian share market had a solid session on Thursday, clawing back some ground following losses on Tuesday and Wednesday. Window dressing ahead of the end of the financial year, coupled with a strong lead from Wall Street, saw the All Ordinaries Index (XAO) rise 1.1 per cent today to 5446.8 points. That's been enough to turn around the week's fortunes so far, with the market now higher by 0.8 per cent on the week.
Every sector closed higher. A rebound in the iron ore price lifted the materials sector by 1.2 per cent while financials were higher by 1.3 per cent.
Another fertility provider debuted on the share market today, following the successful float of Virtus Health (VRT) in 2013. Monash IVF (MVF) grew by almost $13 million in value on its first day on the market, with shares rising almost 3 per cent to $1.905. Most of the company's earnings come from fertility advice and services, while it also carries out genetic testing and provides ultrasounds. VRT rose 1.1 per cent to $8.69.
Tabcorp (TAH) and Tatts Group (TTS) both rose ahead of a Victorian Supreme Court ruling on compensation bids. TAH has lost its bid for a $686M payout, while the Victorian government will have to pay $451 million compensation to TTS for the expiration of its rights to operate poker machines in Victoria. TAH closed up 6.2 per cent to $3.60 ahead of the decision while TTS was up 4.4 per cent to $3.12.
AGL Energy (AGK) rose 2.8 per cent to $15.61 a day after the Competition Tribunal overturned an ACCC decision, allowing AGK to proceed with its takeover bid for Mac-Gen.
In economic news, the number of job vacancies rose by 2.6 per cent in seasonally adjusted terms in the three months to May. After sliding for 2½ years job vacancies have lifted over the past nine months in smoothed trend terms.
Total household wealth (net worth) stood at a record $7,670 billion at the end of March, up $137.9 billion over the quarter - the biggest quarterly rise in four years.
2.02 billion shares changed hands today, worth an estimated $4.9 billion. 637 shares were higher, 378 were lower and 434 unchanged.
The Australian dollar ended the day's session at US94.11c.
Ahead tonight, data showing weekly claims for unemployment insurance are expected together with personal income and spending figures and the Kansas City Fed index.
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