Midday: Aus shares rise on Wall Street gains

Market Reports

Following strong leads from Wall Street, the Australian share market opened higher and is 0.5 per cent up at noon. The Dow hit a new all-time high overnight and the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ also booked gains. 
Shares in Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX:WPL) have jumped more than 2 per cent after announcing a strong second quarter result and an increase in their full year guidance. BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto both made gains today.  
The carbon tax was repealed today in the Senate, with the government successfully pushing the bill through the upper house of the Australian Parliament. 
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 29 points up at 5,548. On the futures market the SPI is 30 points higher. 
Economic news
The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ has released international merchandise imports data for June, which have shown a contraction of 4 per cent of the revised figures from May this year. 
Company news
The Chief Financial Officer of Southern Cross Media Group Limited (ASX:SXL) Peter Lewis, has resigned. The radio and television broadcaster hired Mr Lewis only one month ago but says he will remain with the company to agree transition arrangements. Shares in Southern Cross Media are trading up 1.07 per cent at $1.18
Djerriwarrh Investments Limited (ASX:DJW) says its net profit is up 14 per cent to almost $43 million in the last financial year.  The investment company says income growth came from strong market conditions and growth in dividends paid by companies in its portfolio. A final dividend of 16 cents per share fully franked will be paid to shareholders in August this year.  Shares in Djerriwahh are trading down 0.2 per cent at $4.92
Best and worst performers

The best performing sector is materials, gaining 1.6 per cent to 10,392. Shares in Lynas Corporation Limited (ASX:LYC) have risen 9.26 per cent and trading at $0.15. Shares in Mount Gibson Iron Limited (ASX:MGX) and OZ Minerals Limited (ASX:OZL) are also stronger. 
The worst performing sector is health care, falling 0.1 per cent to 14,398. Shares in Virtus Health Limited (ASX:VRT) have fallen 1.27 per cent, trading at $7.78. Shares in ResMed Inc (ASX:RMD) and Ansell Limited (ASX:ANN) are also lower. 
Gold and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,302 an ounce.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.9359

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