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

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

Here’s a recap:

  • FTSE 100 (UK): up 0.04%
  • DAX (Germany): up 0.66%
  • CAC 40 (France): up 0.69%
  • Dow Jones (USA): down 0.13%
  • NASDAQ (USA): up 0.14%

In London, commodity shares pushed the market into positive territory. FTSE-listed shares of BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) ended 1.93% higher and 0.22% lower, respectively.

US markets moved mostly sideways on Thursday, with the utilities and consumer staples sectors performing strongly.

Closer to home, the Sydney Futures Exchange is tipping a 5-point rise in the S&P/ASX 200.

Shares in focus will include Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corp Ltd (ASX: FPH). This morning, the healthcare services business reported its most recent full-year results revealing a NZ$143.4 million profit, up 27%, on revenue growth of 21%.

Lendlease Group (ASX: LLC) announced the issuance of $US400 million of debt, which it says will be used for general corporate purposes.

Speedcast International Ltd (ASX: SDA), a satellite services provider, announced it had been appointed by OC Sports to provide the fleet of 15 yachts competing in the Transat AG2R La Mondiale with satellite communications equipment. SpeedCast CEO, Pierre Jean Beylier, said the deal opens the company up to the media market but also a wider range of value-added services.

Meanwhile, Irish small-cap company Oneview Healthcare PLC (ASX: ONE) announced proof of concept contracts with three healthcare systems in the Midwest of the United States.

Finally, in broker news:

  • Morgan Stanley analysts cut their Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) price target 2.5% to $39;
  • Morgan Stanley analysts also initiated Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) with a $4.55 price target; and
  • Deutsche Bank analysts raised their Programmed Maintenance Services Limited (ASX: PRG) price target 24% to $2.10, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

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Motley Fool Contributor Owen Raszkiewicz does not have a financial interest in any company mentioned in this article. 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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