It has been a positive start to this Wednesday trading session for the Australian market, after Wall Street finished the day in the black. The local bourse jumped at the open and has continued to gain momentum tracking 0.66 per cent higher at lunch time. The materials space along with the financials sectors are proving to do the bulk of the heavy lifting so far this session, with gains in the big miners BHP and Rio Tinto as well as the big four banks. Healthcare is faring the worst, with blood product heavyweight CSL shedding more than 1 per cent and Resmed losing around 2.5 per cent.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 35 points higher at 5,448. On the futures market the SPI is 32 points higher.
Estia Health Limited (ASX:EHE) has confirmed the appointment of Norah Barlow as Managing Director and CEO of the company. Ms Barlow’s appointment is effective for three years commencing on the 17th of January next year.
Shares in Estia Health are trading down 1.05 per cent at $2.83.
NearMap Limited (ASX:NEA) has gone into a trading halt pending the release of an announcement by the company. It says the halt relates to an equity raising via an institutional placement. The halt will continue until the earlier of this Friday or when the announcement is released to the market. Shares in Nearmap last traded at $0.74.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is Materials, gaining 1.2 per cent to 9,763. Shares in Syrah Resources have risen 3.48 per cent and trading at $2.97. Shares in South32 and Iluka Resources are also stronger.
The worst performing sector is Healthcare, falling 0.7 per cent to 19,623. Shares in Fisher and Paykel Health have fallen 6.12 per cent, trading at $7.82. Shares in Resmed and API are also lower.
Gold and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,213 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7402.