Midday: ASX led higher by banks and miners

Market Reports

Despite a slightly negative lead from US markets weighed down by investor fears of a downbeat earnings season, the Australian share market is half a per cent up in morning trade lead higher by the banks and miners following a jump in iron ore prices.  
However new regulatory approval surrounding foreign food products into China is affecting milk product companies such as Bellamy’s and A2 Milk who are seeing big falls in their share prices today. 
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 29 points up at 4,961. On the futures market the SPI is 38 points higher. 
Company news
Devondale Murray Goulburn trading as MC Unit Trust (ASX:MGC) has addressed recent media speculation regarding new Chinese regulations on imported goods such as milk and milk powder. MG says the removal of some of its Devondale products from some Chinese sites is not expected to have any material impact on business there.  Shares in MC Unit Trust are trading 6.85 per cent lower at $2.04. 
Blackham Resources Limited (ASX:BLK) has appointed Bruce Kendall as Chief Geological Officer. Mr Kendall brings 20 years experience in mining with positions at Jabiru Metals and AngloGold Ashanti. Shares in Blackham Resources are trading 1.16 per cent higher at $0.43. 
Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is financials, gaining 1.11 per cent to 5,585. Shares in BT Investment Trust have risen 4.36 per cent and trading at $9.82. Shares in NAB and Macquarie Group are also stronger. 
The worst performing sector is staples, falling 0.81 per cent to 8,031. Shares in Bellamy’s have fallen 7.94 per cent, trading at $9.16. Shares in Blackmores and Bega Cheese are also lower. 
Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,255 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying 76.23 US cents.