Here are the market highlights:
SPI futures down 1 point at 6130
AUD -0.7% to 71.38 US cents
On Wall St near 4pm: Dow -0.3% S&P 500 -0.1% Nasdaq +0.1%
In New York, BHP -0.4% Rio -0.5% Atlassian +0.4%
In Europe: Stoxx 50 -0.2% FTSE -0.6% CAC -0.3% DAX -0.5%
Spot gold -0.7% to $US1319.99 an ounce at 1.27pm New York time
Brent crude +2.2% to $US66.63 a barrel
US oil +3.2% to $US57.30 a barrel
Iron ore -0.3% to $US83.54 a tonne
Dalian iron ore +0.4% to 600 yuan
LME aluminium +0.6% to $US1922 a tonne
LME copper +0.2% to $US6506.50 a tonne
2-year yield: US 2.50% Australia 1.69%
5-year yield: US 2.48% Australia 1.71%
10-year yield: US 2.68% Australia 2.07% Germany 0.15%
US-Australia 10-year yield gap as of 8.15am AEDT: 61 basis points
Rio Tinto has lavished shareholders with a $US4 billion ($5.6 billion) special dividend and given its growth prospects a much-needed boost by revealing an exciting copper prospect in Western Australia.
The mining giant reported a 2 per cent rise in underlying profit to $US8.8 billion, beating expectations for a profit of $US8.5 billion. Revenue edged higher to $US40.5 billion during a year in which the company sold five major assets.
Rio declared a final dividend of $US1.80, in line with last year’s final payout of $US1.80. But it will also pay a $US4 billion special dividend, following the sale of its stake in the Grasberg copper mine in Indonesia in late 2018.
James Thomson and Brad Thompson have the full story here.
Good morning and welcome to Markets Live for Thursday.
Your editor today is William McInnes.
This blog is not intended as investment advice.