The Australian share markets is expected to start the week flat following Wall Street’s mixed finish on Friday.
CommSec chief economist Craig James says trading is likely to begin cautiously on Monday as local investors wait for the release of housing data later in the week.
“Expect to see a modest gain in the number of home loans, with investors already starting to look at Brisbane and Adelaide markets,” Mr James told AAP.
Investors were being turned off by affordability constraints in Sydney and Melbourne, Mr James said.
Wall Street endured a varied close to their markets after a US employment report showed the first drop in the number of jobs in seven years.
Mr James said it was likely an effect of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and unemployment was actually at a 16-year low and there had also been a rise in wages.
While US stocks closed slightly lower on Friday, the S&P 500 rose 1.2 per cent for the week, the Dow added 1.6 per cent and the Nasdaq gained 1.5 per cent.
European markets were also mixed, with the UK’s up and German stocks down.
“In terms of international flashpoints affecting the markets, it’s still North Korea and now the Catalonia unrest,” Mr James said.
“With reports North Korea may be preparing to test another long-range missile, it’s certainly in the back of investors minds.”
The Australian share market closed higher, boosted by the mining, energy and banking sectors.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 closed up 58.9 points, or 1.04 per cent at 5,710.7 points on Friday, while the Australian dollar was trading at 77.64 US cents at the close.
The broader All Ordinaries index also closed up, by 57.1 points, or one per cent, at 5,777.4 points.