The Australian share market closed only slightly higher on Monday, despite strong gains offshore on Friday night which saw European markets reach five year highs and US markets close at record highs.
The All Ordinaries Index (XAO) added just 3.7pts by close to 5194.8.
Westpac (WBC) lagged in the financial sector, after trading without rights to its 86c dividend. WBC fell $1.05 today.
Mining players were the worst performers, with gold miner Newcrest Mining (NCM) lower by almost four per cent.
Paint maker Dulux Group (DLX) fell by 2.5 per cent to $4.59 after announcing its first half profit was impacted by $10 million in costs associated with its takeover of building products and garage door supplier Alesco. 1H profit fell 31 per cent to $32.9 million, in line with market expectations.
Stockland Group (SGP) today announced its earnings will drop due to costs associated with changed to improve its long term performance. The property development group will cut costs by 10 per cent in the coming year. SGP rose by 1.8 per cent to $3.89 today.
In economic data today, the number of new owner-occupier housing loans rose by 5.2 per cent in March, the strongest rise in four years. But the share of loans taken up by first home buyers fell to a near 9-year low.
The NAB business confidence index fell from +1.6 points to minus 2.0 points in April while the business conditions index improved modestly from minus 7.0 points to minus 5.9 points. The survey was conducted from April 23 to 30.
The Australian dollar fell through parity today and at the close of trade was buying US99.76c.
On the market overall, a total of 1.5 billion shares were traded, worth $5.9 billion. 435 were up, 476 were down and 353 were unchanged.
At 4.30pm AEST the SFE 200 Futures Index was at 5206, down one point.
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