(Australian Associated Press)
Shares on the ASX have closed higher for a ninth consecutive month, the best winning run since 2007.
The ASX200 for June closed higher by 2.11 per cent following a tame final trading day of the financial year.
The market, helped by record low rates and pandemic stimulus, is poised to equal the winning run of 10 months set in 2006 and 2007.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index on Wednesday closed up by 11.8 points, or 0.16 per cent, to 7313.
The All Ordinaries closed higher by 19.5 points, or 0.26 per cent, to 7585.
The market remains close to record highs (set earlier this month) and Pepperstone chief market strategist Chris Weston said while some expected a plunge, it was yet to happen.
“Valuations are stretched and people are asking have we had peak earnings, but we keep grinding higher,” he said of the indices.
“Everyone is expecting the market to fall or bonds to fall, but no one is prepared to put those trades on.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw a five per cent move lower, but you need a trigger.”
The trigger may come from the Reserve Bank meeting next month.
The RBA has flagged it intends to make a decision on its three-year bond target and quantitative easing (bond buying) program at the July 6 board meeting.
The RBA targets the three-year government bond on financial markets to ensure its yield, or interest rate, remains at 0.1 per cent and in line with the cash rate.
A shift from the April 2024 bond to the November 2024 bond would suggest the RBA does not expect to lift interest rates until closer to 2025.
The US Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole policy symposium in August could prove another trigger.
Central bank officials this month brought forward estimates of rate rises.
Investors will want to know when the bank might start winding up the economic stimulus which has helped inflation climb.
On the ASX, telecommunications shares proved best (up 2.66 per cent) after Telstra sold almost half of its mobile towers business for close to $3 billion.
The telco sold InfraCo Towers, which has 8200 towers, to Australia’s Future Fund, and retirement funds Commonwealth Superannuation Corp and Sunsuper.
Shareholders will be winners. About 50 per cent of the $2.8 billion proceeds to be returned via a possible share buyback.
Shares were up 4.44 per cent to $3.76.
Data analytics provider Nuix revealed corporate watchdog ASIC is investigating former chief financial officer Stephen Doyle and family members.
ASIC is also investigating how the company’s initial public offer last year was conducted.
Nuix has been rocked by allegations of poor governance since listing.
Shares closed down 12.99 per cent to $2.21.
Energy provider AGL confirmed it will demerge its coal-fired power stations business and cleaner energy operations.
AGL will become Accel Energy and try and redevelop the coal and gas-fired power stations for battery power.
AGL Australia will offer consumers electricity, gas, internet and mobile services.
Shares were down 9.99 per cent to $8.20.
Materials shares were the next best industry category after telecommunications. Materials rose 0.79 per cent.
Rio Tinto was the best of the big miners and gained 1.31 per cent to $126.64.
In banking, NAB was best of the big four and rose 0.42 per cent to $26.22.
Its peers in the group closed lower by less than one per cent.
The Australian dollar was buying 75.16 US cents at 1728 AEST, lower from 75.63 US cents at Tuesday’s close.
ON THE ASX
* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed up by 11.8 points, or 0.16 per cent, to 7313 on Wednesday.
* The All Ordinaries closed higher by 19.5 points, or 0.26 per cent, to 7585.
* At 1728 AEST, the SPI200 futures index was flat to 7223.
One Australian dollar buys:
* 75.16 US cents, from 75.63 cents on Tuesday
* 83.07 Japanese yen, from 83.51 yen
* 63.18 Euro cents, from 63.37 cents
* 54.36 British pence, from 54.46 pence
* 107.49 NZ cents, from 107.60 cents.