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S&P/ASX 200 set for lift-off: 11 shares to watch

The S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AJXO) (ASX: XJO) is expected to trade firmly higher following strong leads from international markets overnight.

Here’s a recap:

  • Dow Jones (USA): up 1.78%
  • NASDAQ (USA): up 1.09%
  • FTSE 100 (UK): up 0.59%
  • DAX (Germany): up 0.89%
  • EURO STOXX 50 (Europe): up 1.03%
  • Shanghai Composite (China): down 6.4%

In the US, shares ended higher after being led by gains in oil prices and strong reports from blue chips shares like 3M and Procter & Gamble.

In Europe, oil prices moved back above $US30 a barrel and prompted gains despite selloffs in Asian markets. FTSE-listed shares of BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) climbed 0.62% and 0.42%, respectively.

Closer to home, the Sydney Futures Exchange is tipping a 54 point, or 1.1%, rise in the S&P/ASX 200.

A flicker of hope from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on Monday saw oil prices rise overnight after the cartel called for cooperation from non-members to restore market prices. Rebounds in prices will likely have positive ripple effects for shares of local oil and gas producers like Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL), Oil Search Limited (ASX: OSH) and Santos Ltd (ASX: STO).

Shares of durable household products manufacturer and distributor, GUD Holdings Limited (ASX: GUD), will also be in focus today. For the six months ended 31 December 2015, GUD reported a profit of $1.09 million, down from $17.61 million last year.

Information services business, Recall Holdings Ltd (ASX: REC) released a note stating its intentions to acquire Switzerland’s Secur’ Archiv. No purchase price was stated.

Rio Tinto announced it has reached an agreement to sell its Mount Pleasant Coal deposits for $US224 million plus royalties to MACH Energy Australia. Together with its sale of the Bengalla coal joint venture, Rio Tinto has delivered $US830 million in asset sales.

Finally, Oil Search, EVOLUTION FPO (ASX: EVN) and Lynas Corporation Limited (ASX: LYC) issued quarterly reports today.

In broker news, analysts at Morgans downgraded their Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) price target by 41% to $0.46, while Bell Potter analysts cut their price target on National Australia Bank Ltd. (ASX: NAB) shares by 3% to $32.50.

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Motley Fool writer/analyst Owen Raszkiewicz does not have a financial interest in any company mentioned. Owen welcomes -- and encourages -- your feedback on Google+, 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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