Today's Finance News

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June 27th, 2017

THE Australian market looks set to open flat after both the Dow and the S&P 500 closed steady on Wall Street. At 0700 AEST on Tuesday, the share price futures index was up two points, or 0.04 per cent, at 5,668.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar had led all three of the commodities currencies higher against the US dollar as oil prices ended the day in positive territory, BK Asset Management’s managing director of FX Strategy Kathy Lien said. The local currency was trading at 75.82 US cents at 0700 AEST on Tuesday, from 75.71 on Monday.

WORLD FINANCE UPDATE:

WASHINGTON — US President Donald Trump praised the Supreme Court’s decision to review the legality of his temporary ban on travellers from six Muslim-majority countries and all refugees, and to allow it to be partly implemented in the meantime.

LONDON — UK Prime Minister Theresa May has unveiled details of her plan to protect the rights of EU citizens living in Britain, saying the government would work to offer them the same health, medical and educational benefits as British citizens.

WASHINGTON — Demand for long-lasting US factory goods fell by the most in 18 months, and a key category that tracks business investment also slipped, evidence that manufacturing output is barely growing.

OSLO — Fishing fleets dump about 10 per cent of the fish they catch back into the ocean in an “enormous waste” of low-value fish, Australian and US scientists say.

LOS ANGELES — Four of the world’s biggest tech companies — Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube — have teamed up to form a new coalition to make their services “hostile to terrorists and violent extremists.”

MONDAY HIGHLIGHTS:

CROWN — Three Australian employees of Crown Resorts could be released from a Chinese jail within months after being handed nine and 10-month sentences for gambling related offences in a Shanghai court.

TEN — Ten Network’s main lender, the Commonwealth Bank, is set to appoint a receiver who could look at sale options for the broadcaster, while administrators of the troubled TV network say it will have cash to continue operating.

METCASH — Food and grocery wholesaler Metcash has resumed dividends after lowering debt but expects competitive pressures to continue to weigh on its performance in the current financial year.

RIO TINTO — The future of Rio Tinto’s NSW coal operations looks set to be resolved via a bidding war after commodities giant Glencore returned to the fray with a higher offer.

COLLINS FOODS — Collins Foods, Australia’s largest KFC franchisee, is expanding with the acquisition of a further 28 KFC restaurants in Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia from Yum Brands for $110 million.

AVEO — Aveo Group shares have slumped as the retirement and nursing home operator faces a media investigation alleging it has used exorbitant fees and complex contracts to increase profits.

HOUSING PRICES — House prices have again lifted in Sydney and Melbourne, with the median price of a house sold in the Harbour City now at $1,000,500.

AUSTAL — Shipbuilder Austal has won a $779 million contract to build a 14th Littoral Combat Ship for the US Navy.

SUNCORP — Suncorp has made an improved $NZ236.1 million ($A227.2 million) takeover bid for New Zealand insurer Tower.

CALTEX — Fuel retailer Caltex Australia has received regulatory approval to buy Gull New Zealand in an approximately $325 million deal as part of its plan to increase its retail business.

UNITS — Units continue to show a higher proportion of resales at a loss compared to houses, with the number across capital cities hovering around its highest level in four years.