Iron ore climbs to highest price since September: ASX closes 0.3% higher

Market Reports

by Peter Milios

Singaporean iron ore futures have soared above the US$100 per tonne for the first time since September, resulting in gains for ASX-listed iron ore companies.

Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG) lifted 2.21 per cent, whilst Rio Tinto closed 3.53 per cent higher.

Gas and oil supplier Santos (ASX:STO) has suffered a gas leak at its John Brookes platform off the coast of Western Australia. Gas users now face a supply crunch, and the platform will be shut for up to six weeks. "Santos is working with customers and other parties to manage gas supply arrangements while the leak is repaired. At this stage, it is expected repairs will take approximately four to six weeks to return to full production," Santos stated.

At the closing bell, the S&P/ASX 200 was 24 points or 0.3 per cent higher at 7,253.30.


The Dow Jones futures are point to a rise of 70 points.
The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a rise of 13 points.
The NASDAQ futures are pointing to a rise of 54 points.
The S&P/ASX 200 futures are pointing to a rise of 19 points when the market next opens.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was Materials, up 1.7 per cent. The worst-performing sector was REITs, down 0.8 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corporation (ASX:FPH), closing 9.8 per cent higher at $21.09. It was followed by shares in Nanosonics (ASX:NAN) and Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Collins Foods (ASX:CKF), closing 19.8 per cent lower at $8.05. It was followed by shares in GrainCorp (ASX:GNC) and ASX (ASX:ASX).

Asian news

Asian equities are mostly higher Tuesday.

The Nikkei is down 0.51 per cent, whilst the Hang Seng is up 4.12 per cent, and the Shanghai Composite is up 2.29 per cent.

Greater China is rebounding, with tech and property driving Hang Seng's outperformance. Japan equities are lagging while Korea and Taiwan are logging mild gains.

Company news

Microba Life Sciences (ASX:MAP) announced that medical diagnostics provider Sonic Healthcare (ASX:SHL) has agreed to invest $17.8m to acquire a 19.99 per cent shareholding in Microba. In addition, Sonic is seeking to acquire options for an additional 5 per cent equity position, subject to shareholder approval. Microba’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Luke Reid, said, “This strategic partnership with Sonic is set to accelerate international distribution of Microba’s microbiome testing into primary and specialist healthcare, and move our testing deeper into routine patient management.” Shares closed 52.27 per cent higher at $0.335.

Laybuy Group (ASX:LBY) today released its Half Year Report for the period ended 30 September 2022. The results show that the company increased its income by 22.1 per cent year-on-year, and remains on track to achieve EBITDA profitability in March 2023 as losses declined by more than a third. In response, Managing Director Gary Rohloff says, “Our strategy to achieve profitability is delivering results with our normalised losses nearly halving when compared to the same period last year.” Shares closed 11.32 per cent higher at $0.059.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (ASX:FPH) announces their results for the first half of the 2023 financial year. For the six months ended 30 September 2022, total operating revenue was $690.6 million, above the $670 million guided by the company in its August trading update. Managing Director and CEO Lewis Gradon said, “Through the first half, there are positive signs that our hospital customers are working through their excess inventory holdings, and total group sales of our hospital consumables have increased sequentially on a month-by-month basis since May.” Shares closed 9.84 per cent higher at $21.09.

Australian sustainable rare earths company RareX (ASX: REE) has reported results from a further two diamond drill-holes completed as part of the 2022 drilling program at its 100 per cent-owned Cummins Range Rare Earths and Phosphate Project in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. The holes, CDX0023 and CDX0024, returned exceptional wide intercepts of significant rare earths and phosphate mineralisation, confirming the significant scale and potential of the mineralised system at Cummins Range. Commenting on the results, RareX Managing Director, Jeremy Robinson, said: “The wide intercepts continue to come through for Cummins Range and we expect to see a strong flow of news through until January next year now the program is complete.” Shares closed 10.64 per cent higher at $0.052.

Immutep (ASX: IMM; NASDAQ: IMMP), a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing novel LAG-3 immunotherapy for cancer and autoimmune disease, is pleased to announce it has signed a Clinical Trial Collaboration and Supply Agreement with Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany and Pfizer for a new Phase I clinical study in patients with urothelial cancer, called INSIGHT-005. “We are very pleased to be deepening our collaboration with Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany and Pfizer through this new study in patients with urothelial cancer, the sixth most common cancer in the US, who are in need of treatment options,” said Immutep CEO, Marc Voigt. Shares closed 4.29 per cent higher at $0.365.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1767.60 an ounce.
Light crude is trading $1.56 higher at US$78.80 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 67.03 US cents.

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