Economy expands 3.3% in September quarter: ASX tracking 0.3% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market had a promising open then took a tumble before midday trade and is now tracking 0.3 per cent lower at noon. Shares in Mesoblast (ASX:MSB) soared today after they announced the FDA has a fast track designation for remestemcel-L in the treatment of Covid-19 infection symptons. Materials is the only sector in the black so far today.

The S&P/ASX 200 index

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 22 points down at 6,567. On the futures market the SPI is suggesting a fall of 7 points.

Local economic news

Australian economic activity rose 3.3 per cent in seasonally adjusted chain volume terms in the September quarter 2020, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today. Head of National Accounts at the ABS, Michael Smedes said: “Following the record 7.0 per cent decline in the June quarter, Australia experienced a partial recovery in the September quarter. As a result, economic activity fell 3.8 per cent through the year to September quarter."

Broker moves

UBS rates Domino’s Pizza (ASX:DMP) as an Upgrade to Neutral from Sell. UBS found the company's 2020 investor day to be positive with takeaways operating leverage expected to improve and most of the second half covid costs unlikely to repeat in FY21. Also, the broker highlights strong franchisee profit across the board with Germany scaling up and Japan expected to continue to grow.Target is unchanged at $72. Shares in Domino’s Pizza (ASX:DMP) are trading 2 per cent lower at $81.49.

Company news

Nickel Mines (ASX:NIC) has launched a $364 million capital raising to fund its initial 30 per cent interest in the Angel nickel project in Indonesia. The Entitlement Offer will be conducted at A$0.94 per New Share (‘Offer Price’), representing a 10 per cent discount to the last traded price of $1.045 on Tuesday. Shares in Nickel Mines (ASX:NIC) last traded at $1.04.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Materials adding 0.6 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Real Estate Investment Trust shedding 1.3 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR) rising 8.7 per cent to $5.23, followed by shares in Mesoblast (ASX:MSB) and Westgold Resources (ASX:WGX).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Bravura Solutions (ASX:BVS) dropping 3.2 per cent to $2.35, followed by shares in Worley (ASX:WOR) and Nearmap (ASX:NEA).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,813 an ounce.
Iron Ore Price has gained 0.4 per cent at $132.13.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 1.8 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 73.77US cents.