Morning market movers: 9 shares to watch

The local S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AJXO) (ASX: XJO) is expected to open higher following positive leads from US markets overnight.

Here’s a recap:

  • Dow Jones (USA) – up 0.72%
  • NASDAQ (USA): up 0.93%
  • FTSE 100 (UK): down 0.29%
  • DAX (Germany) – down 1.04%
  • EURO STOXX 50 (Europe) – down 1.46%

In the US, technology companies led markets higher, with shares of Apple, Microsoft and Alphabet Inc (formally Google) all ending in positive territory.

However, a 1.7% fall in Brent crude oil to $US36.27 a barrel overnight took the total decline in prices to 19% this month, and means oil prices are now at their lowest level in 11 years, according to the Fairfax Press.

In Europe, energy companies weighed on markets. FTSE-listed shares of Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) and BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) closed mostly flat.

Closer to home, the Sydney Futures Exchange is tipping a 20-poiunt jump from the S&P/ASX 200.

Shares of Asciano Ltd (ASX: AIO) and Qube Holdings Ltd (ASX: QUB) will be in focus after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said it would consult the market on the proposed takeover of Asciano by a consortium led by Brookfield Infrastructure Partners LP. Rail and ports business, Qube, has also entered a bid for Asciano.

After the announcement of the resignation of Crown Resorts Ltd (ASX: CWN) director, James Packer, shares of the casino and resorts operator will again be in focus.

So too will shares of accounting software providers Reckon Limited (ASX: RKN) and MYOB Group Ltd (ASX: MYO). According to The Australian, speculation may be mounting for MYOB to launch a takeover offer for Reckon.

In broker news, Qantas Airways Limited (ASX: QAN) has been given an outperform rating by analysts at Credit Suisse, and Macquarie analysts lifted their price target on Corporate Travel Management Ltd (ASX: CTM) shares to $12.50, from $11.77, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

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Motley Fool writer/analyst Owen Raszkiewicz has no position in any stocks mentioned.

Owen welcomes your feedback on Google plus (see below), LinkedIn or you can follow him on Twitter @ASXinvest.

Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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.

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