Local shares followed Wall Street lower today, despite the best efforts of retail pair Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) and Woolworths Limited (ASX: WOW) which both recorded strong gains for the day.

Here’s a quick recap:

  • S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) down 0.4% to 5541 points
  • ALL ORDINARIES (Index: ^AXAO) (ASX: XAO) down 0.4% to 5631 points
  • AUD/USD at US 76.34 cents
  • Iron Ore at US$61.70 a tonne, according to the Metal Bulletin
  • Gold at US$1,326.25 an ounce
  • Brent oil at US$49.07 a barrel

Woolworths shares soared 3.9% after exiting a trading halt imposed yesterday. It announced the sale of its Home Timber & Hardware business while it also released its earnings this morning.

Metcash Limited (ASX: MTS), the company buying HT&H, also gained 6.3%, while Wesfarmers shares gained 2.4%.

Elsewhere, Altium Limited (ASX: ALU) gained another 7.9% and Nearmap Ltd (ASX: NEA) recovered 19.8%. Retail Food Group Limited (ASX: RFG) rose 7.5%. And iSentia Group Ltd (ASX: ISD) lifted another 5%.

Village Roadshow Ltd (ASX: VRL) wasn’t so lucky, losing 9.3%. Myob Group Ltd (ASX: MYO) fell 10.1% as well while Greencross Limited (ASX: GXL), which dropped 2.4%.

The gold miners fell sharply after the gold price dropped overnight, falling to US$1,326 an ounce. Beadell Resources Ltd (ASX: BDR) fell 10.3%, Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) lost 4.8% and St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) fell 6.1%.

Here are Thursday’s top stories:

  1. Woolworths Limited shares rocket despite profit crash
  2. Why the Amcor Limited share price is going gangbusters today
  3. Is Slater & Gordon Limited about to make an incredible comeback?
  4. Is Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd a buy after today’s results?
  5. Is Retail Food Group Limited heading back to $7 after today’s record result?
  6. Here’s why Fantastic Holdings Limited shares have skyrocketed today
  7. Why Shares of Woolworths Are Soaring Today

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman owns shares of iSentia Group Ltd and Retail Food Group Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Altium and Retail Food Group Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.