ASX extends rally, Telstra tolls: Aus shares 0.2% higher at noon

Market Reports

by Anna Napoli

The Australian share market has extended its rally from last week following modest gains at the open the ASX is now tracking 0.2 per cent higher at noon.

The energy sector is leading the way and the telco sector trailing behind after Telstra announced lower earnings expectations. Financials ANZ and Macquarie Group are also down after both companies went ex dividend this morning.

The Iron ore price rose 1.04 per cent and its futures. We are seeing the likes of BHP (ASX:BHP) and Rio (ASX:RIO) make gains over 1 per cent.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 13 points up at 6129. On the futures market the SPI is 25 points higher.

Company news now

Noni B (ASX:NBL) has snapped up struggling retailer Specialty Fashion Group for $31 million.The acquired portfolio includes mid-market brands Millers, Katies, Rivers, Crossroads and Autograph. Noni B requested a trading halt this morning ahead of the announcements. But, Specialty Fashion Group (ASX:SFH) is trading 50% higher to 57 cents following the news.

Industrial manufacturing and 3D printing company, Titomic (ASX:TTT) has inked its first marine deal, which will see it work with the largest shipbuilder in Europe. Titomic entered a 12-month deal with Fincantieri, to evaluate the potential for Titomic’s additive manufacturing process, to be used in Fincantieri’s manufacturing. The company says it’s a significant milestone and having Fincantieri assess its ‘Titomic Kinetic Fusion’ process not only adds value to its business, but it will lead to the creation of next generation high tech vessels. Titomic (ASX:TTT) shares are trading up 17 per cent at $2.78.

Agribusiness Elders (ASX:ELD) has announced an 8 per cent rise in (statutory) net profit to $41 million for the first half of the financial year. The company’s earnings (EBIT) rose by 10 per cent when compared to the same time last year to $46 million. The stellar results were driven by strong performance in its Retail business.Shares in Elders are trading 6 per cent higher to $8.60 following the announcement.

In IPOs

Financial services firm, Evans Dixon (ASX:ED1) started trading today, floating with an issue price of $2.50, opening at $2.80 and its trading at $2.79.

Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is energy adding 1 per cent to 11621 points while the worst performing sector is telcos, shedding 3 per cent to 1139 points.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is GWA Group (ASX:GWA), rising 4.6 per cent to $3.89, followed by shares in Healthscope (ASX:HSO) and Western Areas (ASX:WSA).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is News Corp (ASX:NWS), dropping 5.9 per cent to $21.17, followed by shares in Lynas (ASX:LYC) and Treasury Wines (ASX:TWE).

Asian markets 

Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.2 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has added 1.3 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has gained 0.4 per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,321 an ounce.
One Australian dollar is buying 75.56 US cents.

Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin is trading at almost $8700 and, Ethereum gained about 8 per cent to US$732