Following strong leads, the Australian share market opened higher this morning and is now tracking 0.16 per cent up at noon.
The health care sector has surged this morning on news Australian cannabis exports have been approved by the Federal government. Off the back of gains in cannabis related stocks, the health care index is up close to 1.2 per cent.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 9 points up at 6080. On the futures market the SPI is 6 points higher.
Local economic news
The Australian Industry Group has reported the services economy continued to expand in December, with the Performance of Service Index score coming in at 52.0. This represented a 0.3 point lift on November’s index.
Cann Group Limited (ASX:CAN) has welcomed the decision by the Federal Government to allow Australian producers of medical cannabis to export their product to overseas markets. The cannabis manufacturer recently commissioned its second production facility, and is progressing plans to develop a 16,000 square metre for cultivation, research and development. Shares in Cann Group Limited (ASX:CAN) are trading up 27.08 per cent at $3.66.
Bod Australia Limited (ASX:BOD) has announced it has entered into an exclusive manufacturing and commercialisation agreement with Singapore Stock Exchange listed pharmaceutical company iX Biopharma. The two companies will look to develop and commercialise a cannabis wafer product using their patented wafer delivery method. Wafers are intended to be placed under the consumers tongue, and dissolve in one minute, with active compounds released for active absorption. Shares in Bod Australia Limited (ASX:BOD)are trading up 25.58 per cent at $0.54.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Health Care adding 1.18 per cent to 24,563.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Navitas (ASX:NVT), rising 2.43 per cent to $5.48. Shares in Wisetech Global (ASX:WTC) and Reliance Worldwide Corporation Limited (ASX:RWX) are also higher.
The worst performing sector was Utilities, shedding 0.66 per cent to 1,188. points.
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was St Barbara Limited (ASX:SBM), dropping 3.19 per cent to close at $3.80. Shares in Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (ASX:SAR) and Sigma Healthcare Limited (ASX:SIG) are also lower.
Gold and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,310 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 78.23 US cents.
Bitcoin has gained 1.22 per cent in the last 24 hours to $15,194
Ethereum is up 6.65 per cent to $953
And Litecoin has fallen about 5.88 per cent to $242