The Australian share market opened higher gaining 0.6 per cent in the first hour of trade, erasing yesterday’s losses on the back of positive Wall Street sentiment.
At noon the ASX200 gained a seventh of a per cent, still not enough to recoup last week’s loss of 1.1 per cent.
The energy sector is leading the way, followed by healthcare with stellar company results bolstering the sector.
Lithium companies are bouncing back from yesterday’s sell-off after Chilean heavyweight SQM announced it would ramp up production to meet rising demands from the electric car market. Companies like Orocobre (ASX:ORE) are up over 2 per cent, Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) up over 3 per cent while smaller companies like Argosy Minerals (ASX:AGY) gained 8 per cent, Tawana Resources (ASX:TAW) gained 6 per cent.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 41 points up or 0.7 per cent higher at 6,033. On the futures market the SPI is 39 points higher.
South32 (ASX:S32) advised its two chief operating officers will now be accountable for managing South Africa Energy Coal (SAEC) as a stand alone business. Mike Fraser will look after alumina and aluminium while Paul Harvey will manage manganese and metallurgical coal. South32 says by having the business unit as a standalone, in the 2018 half year shareholder value can be unlocked and its business will be simplified. Shares in South32 (ASX:S32) are trading 1.2 per cent higher at $3.79.
ResMed (ASX:RMD) shares are rallying strongly today after it announced its revenue rose 13 per cent to $601.3 million for the December quarter (compared to pcp), beating forecasts. The health cloud company also declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.35 per share with as record date of 8 February 2018, payable on 15 March 2018. Its operating cash flow hit about $133 million for the second quarter of this finanical year. Shares in ResMed (ASX:RMD) are trading 8.7 per cent higher at $12.00.
US based fintech company, Change Financial (ASX:CCA) has advised it is going to snap up 33 per cent of a new blockchain-based cryptocurrency for business transactions, ivyKoin LLC. ivyKoin is in the process of raising funds. Shares in Change Financial are trading 5.9 per cent lower at $1.04.
Carbonxt Group Limited (ASX:CG1) started trading today. The company which aims to reduce environmental pollutants through the development of activated carbons floated with an issue price of $0.70, opened at $0.70 and its trading at $0.70.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is energy adding 1.7 per cent to 10,910 points while the worst performing sector is utilites, shedding 0.06 per cent to 7,864 points.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Domain Holdings Australia Limited (ASX:DHG), rising 9.82 per cent to $3.02, followed by shares in Resmed Inc (ASX:RMD) and Orica (ASX:ORI).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Australian Pharmaceutical Industries (ASX:API), dropping 8.14 per cent to $1.34, followed by shares in HT&E (ASX:HT1) and Pact Group Holdings Ltd (ASX:PGH).
Gold and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,334 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 80.18 US cents.
The three most traded cryptocurrencies are trading lower.
Bitcoin has fallen 7 per cent to $10,803
Ethereum fallen about 6 per cent to $992
And Tether has fallen about 0.3 per cent to $1.00.