Saturday, March 17, 2012

Australian share market is expected to open higher march 19 2012

Australian share market is expected to open higher march 19 2012 : The Australian share market is expected to open higher on Monday, with a surge in the oil price of over two per cent in offshore markets supporting local oil stocks. CommSec chief economist Craig James said the futures market was pointing to a gain of 30 points on the Australian bourse at the start of trade, probably led by major energy stocks.

'For our market, the oil price was up significantly so that's going to be good news for the energy stocks,' Mr James said.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil rose two per cent to $US107.25 and Brent crude oil jumped 2.9 per cent to $US126.10.

ICAP's chief economist Adam Carr in a statement attributed the moves to 'a pure growth play - and maybe a bit of US dollar selling'.

Mr James said other sectors would probably make gains in a delayed reaction to a positive US lead on Friday that failed to produce gains in the local market that day.

'Our market ended flat on Friday even though there was a positive lead which was a little bit disappointing.

'On Friday we were expected to post fairly good gains up around 20 or 30 points and that didn't happen, so I think we may see ... the gain happen on Monday instead of on Friday.'

Wall Street's major indices put in a mixed performance on Friday after a range of economic data added to mixed signals on the state of the US economic recovery.

Rising petrol prices spurred an increase in consumer prices in February, while industrial production was flat that month, and a University of Michigan index of consumer confidence showed confidence fell by 1.0 point despite analysts' prediction of a slight rise.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 20.14 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 13,233 points, while the broader Standard Poor's 500 gained 1.57 points, or 0.11 per cent, to 1,404.2 points.

The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite lost 1.11 points, or 0.04 per cent, to 3,055.3 points.

The price of gold was flat, but other base metals prices were weaker, with copper easing 0.4 per cent and silver down by 0.3 per cent.

The week ahead will be dominated by US housing figures, and the release of minutes of the Reserve Bank of Australia's monetary policy meeting in March.

On the corporate front, first half 2012 earnings results will be posted by David Jones, Sigma Pharmaceuticals, Brickworks, Washington H Soul Pattinson and Premier Investments.

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