ASX closes 0.23% higher on hopes inflation has slowed

Market Reports

by Peter Milios

At the closing bell, the S&P/ASX 200 was 0.23 per cent higher at 7,050.30, buoyed by hopes that slowing inflation will prompt the Reserve Bank to pause its tightening policy.

Australian banks were hit hard after UBS downgraded its ratings and price targets, citing global financial turmoil and increasing funding costs.

Energy and Materials sectors saw gains due to higher iron ore and oil prices, while Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR) surged 0.8 per cent following comments by Citi analysts that Albemarle may need to increase its takeover bid.

Meanwhile, ASIC has begun investigating ASX's oversight of the CHESS replacement program, and Nitro Software (ASX:NTO) fell 1.4 per cent following the departure of its top executives.


The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a rise of 126 points.
The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a rise of 19.5 points.
The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a rise of 56 points.
The SPI 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 1.25 per cent. The worst-performing sector was REITs, down 0.72 per cent.

The best-performing large cap was ALS (ASX:ALQ), closing 4.76 per cent higher at $12.10. It was followed by shares in Allkem (ASX:AKE) and James Hardie Industries (ASX:JHX).

The worst-performing large cap was Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC), closing 4.14 per cent lower at $6.49. It was followed by shares in Qube Holdings (ASX:QUB) and National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB).

Asian markets

Japan's Nikkei has gained 0.77 per cent.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng has gained 2.01 per cent.
China's Shanghai Composite has lost 0.45 per cent.

Company news

Mamba Exploration (ASX:M24) has announced that their drilling has identified wide clay rare earth elements at their Hyden Project in WA. In response, Managing Director, Mike Dunbar said, “While we are surprised by the width and consistency of the mineralisation, it is also surprising that the mineralisation is so shallow, with little or no surficial cover over the clay mineralisation.” Shares closed 86.7 per cent higher at 14 cents.

Globe Metals & Mining (ASX:GBE) has announced that the Malawi Government approves MDA for the development of their Kanyika Niobium Project. Globe Chairperson, Alice Wong, commented, With this ultimate approval and final agreement in place, all parties concerned can now focus their efforts and resources on making the Kanyika Project the first niobium mine in Africa.” Shares closed 8.3 per cent higher at 9.1 cents.

Walkabout Resources (ASX:WKT) has signed a term sheet with Gemcorp, an emerging fund manager, for up to US$25 million to complete construction of the Lindi Jumbo Graphite Mine in Tanzania. CEO of Walkabout Resources, Andrew Cunningham commented; “Having Lindi Jumbo more than 85 per cent complete to cost prior to the first drawdown, provides a significantly different base for project debt than any of the prior arrangements.” Shares closed 4.6 per cent higher at 11.5 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,967.40 an ounce.
Iron ore is 1.7 per cent higher at US$123.70 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 0.91 per cent rise.
Light crude is trading $0.40 higher at US$73.60 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 66.99 US cents.

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