Australia: S&P/ASX 200 (ASX:.AXJO) expected to rise

Australia: S&P/ASX 200 (ASX:.AXJO) expected to rise

The Australian share market looks set to end the week with a bang after Chinese officials said they don’t want to escalate the trade war. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 index is poised to open the day 47 points or 0.7% higher this morning. On Wall Street the Dow Jones raced 1.25% higher, the S&P 500 index rose 1.25%, and the Nasdaq stormed 1.5% higher.

Harvey Norman result.

The Harvey Norman Holdings Limited (ASX: HVN) share price will be on watch this morning when the retail giant releases its full year results. Investors are likely to be expecting a strong result from Harvey Norman after rival JB Hi-Fi Limited (ASX: JBH) smashed expectations earlier this month.

Oil prices rise again.

Australian energy producers such as Oil Search Limited (ASX: OSH) and Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) could finish the week on a high today after the sharp drop in U.S. crude inventories continued to send oil prices charging higher. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price climbed a further 1.5% to US$56.62 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price pushed 0.9% higher to US$61.02 a barrel.

Gold price slides.

The positive trade war development looks set to weigh on Australian gold miners including Resolute Mining Limited (ASX: RSG) and St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) on Friday. According to CNBC, the spot gold price dropped 0.85% to US$1,535.80 an ounce after investor sentiment improved and demand for risk-off assets eased.

Shares going ex-dividend.

A number of popular shares are due to go ex-dividend this morning and are likely to trade lower. These include building materials company Boral Limited (ASX: BLD), annuities company Challenger Ltd (ASX: CGF), and conglomerate Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES). In respect to the latter, Wesfarmers’ 78 cents per share fully franked final dividend will be paid to eligible shareholders on October 9.

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