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5 things to watch on the ASX on Friday

On Thursday the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) started strongly but faded as the day went on before finishing it slightly slower at 6,351.8 points.

Will the local market be able to bounce back on Friday and finish on a high? Here are five things to watch:

ASX futures pointing higher.

The Australian share market looks set to open the day higher on Friday. According to the latest SPI futures, it is expected to open 0.3% or 16 points higher this morning. This is despite U.S. markets sinking lower overnight after reports that President Trump plans to back tariffs on Chinese goods. The Dow Jones fell 0.5%, the S&P 500 dropped 0.4%, and the Nasdaq fell almost 0.3%.

WTI crude oil breaks US$70 a barrel mark.

Much to the delight of Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) shareholders, it was another positive day of trade for oil prices. This led to the WTI crude oil price climbing almost 0.9% to US$70.11 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price pushing nearly 0.6% higher to US$77.57 a barrel.

Shares going ex-dividend.

A number of popular shares are going ex-dividend for their latest pay-outs this morning. These include annuities company Challenger Ltd (ASX: CGF) electronics company Codan Limited (ASX: CDA), iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group Limited (ASX: FMG), and travel company Helloworld Travel Ltd (ASX: HLO).

Freedom Foods results.

The Freedom Foods Group Ltd (ASX: FNP) share price will be on watch this morning after the healthy foods company released its full year results after the market close. Freedom Foods reported annual net sales growth of 34.5% to $353 million and operating net profit growth of 96.9% to $19.4 million. Management held firm with its FY 2019 net sales guidance in the range of $500 million to $530 million

NEXTDC results.

Data centre operator NEXTDC Ltd (ASX: NXT) is expected to release its full year results today. The company isn’t expected to report much by way of profit growth this year due to investing heavily in its data centre network. All eyes will be on its utilisation rates and guidance for the year ahead.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro owns shares of NEXTDC Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Challenger Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Helloworld Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Freedom Foods 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 Scott Phillips.

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