S&P/ASX 200 set to open lower:7 shares to watch

The S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) is expected to trade lower today following negative leads from international markets.

Here’s a recap:

  • FTSE 100 (UK): down 1.82%
  • DAX (Germany): down 1.48%
  • CAC 40 (France): down 0.85%
  • Dow Jones (USA): down 0.52%
  • NASDAQ (USA): down 0.56%

In London, markets reacted to the renewed concerns of a Federal Reserve interest rate lift in June. FTSE-listed shares of BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) ended 4.8% and 3.5% lower, respectively.

US markets also ended in the red. Shares in the financials and healthcare sectors ended lowest while utilities gained the most ground.

Closer to home, the Sydney Futures Exchange is tipping a 6-point, or 0.1%, fall in the S&P/ASX 200.

Shares in focus will include Myer Holdings Ltd (ASX: MYR). This morning, the department store operator announced it will be exiting its stores in Wollongong and Orange in New South Wales as part of its focus on productivity.

Oil Search Limited (ASX: OSH) announced an agreement to acquire 100% of InterOil via a $2.2 billion bid. Oil Search says the business is highly complementary and both boards have unanimously approved the deal. InterOil shareholders stand to receive 8.05 Oil Search shares plus a Contingent Value Right (CVR) for every share. The CVR is “linked to the volume of 2C hydrocarbon gas resource certified to be contained in the Elk-Antelope fields”.

In a separate announcement, Oil Search also revealed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Total. The MoU will see Oil Search sell some of its newly acquired InterOil assets and exploration blocks to Total. Subject to completion, Oil Search will hold 29% of the PNG LNG project while Total is expected to own 48.1%.

Elsewhere, Ausdrill Limited (ASX: ASL) announced it has agreed to sell its DTA Business to Robit Plc for $66 million. Ausdrill is expected to generate a profit from the sale.

Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) booked an increase in contingent resources (2C) following two gas discoveries offshore Myanmar in the first quarter of 2016.

Finally, in recent broker news:

  • Goldman Sachs analysts raised their Cochlear Limited (ASX: COH) price target 3% to $115;
  • Goldman Sachs analysts also cut their IOOF Holdings Limited (ASX: IFL) price target 3.1% to $9.35; and
  • Morgans analysts raised their Beacon Lighting Group Ltd (ASX: BLX) share price target 26% to $1.60, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

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Motley Fool Contributor Owen Raszkiewicz owns Cochlear shares. Owen welcomes -- and encourages -- your feedback on Google+, LinkedIn or you can follow him on Twitter @ASXinvest.

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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