Midday: Aus shares track 0.41% lower at noon

Market Reports

Despite positive leads from Wall Street, the Australian share market has struggled for direction in the first two hours of trade and is 0.41 per cent lower at noon. Bargain hunters have stepped into to pick up some of the depleted resources stocks, however its the big banks that are proving to be the biggest drag on the market so far today.
 
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 23 points lower at 5,204. On the futures market the SPI is down 22 points. 
 
Company news

Qube Holdings Limited (ASX:QUB) has confirmed that its consortium has lodged its formal submission to the ACCC regarding the proposed acquisition of Asciano. The consortium has been closely engaged with the ACCC since announcing its acquisition of 19.9 per cent of Asciano on 30 October and its non-binding indicative proposal on 10 November 2015. Shares in Qube are trading down 0.63 per cent at $2.35. 
 
Panorama Synergy Limited (ASX:PSY) has been placed into a trading halt with respect to a material announcement in relation to a licensing agreement in the coming days. The company says it should be able to make the announcement prior to the commencement of trade on Friday. Shares in Panorama Synergy last traded at 18 cents. 
 
Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is Materials, gaining 0.2 per cent to 7,289. Shares in Northern Star Resources have risen 5.84 per cent and trading at $2.72. Shares in Evolution Mining and Western Areas are also stronger. 
 
The worst performing sector is Staples, falling 1.1 per cent to 8,281. Shares in Woolworths have fallen 1.87 per cent, trading at $23.60. Shares in Select Harvests and Bega Cheese are also lower. 
 
Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,077 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying 72.61 US cents.