Information Technology sector bolsters market: ASX tracking 1.2% higher at noon

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market opened higher and continued to rise throughout the morning now tracking at 1.2 per cent higher at noon. The market has been bolstered by the Information Technology with the Consumer Discretionary sector trailing behind. Lithium miner Galaxy Resources (ASX:GXY) shares have slipped after reporting a huge half-year loss due to its flagship Mt Cattlin project. Shares in Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) also slid after their NPAT for the half year was unchanged from the last corresponding period.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 77 points up at 6,585. On the futures market the SPI is 1.1 points higher.

Local economic news

The total number of dwellings approved in Australia fell by 3.2 per cent in July 2019 in trend terms, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today. The seasonally adjusted estimate for total dwellings approved fell 9.7% in July.

Broker moves

Citi issued a research report on Woolworths (ASX:WOW) highlighting their solid FY19 result with continuing EBIT of $2.7 billion, 1 per cent to 2 per cent ahead of Bloomberg consensus, with headline growth of 5 per cent, after adjusting for the 53rd week. Citi says, after backing one-off items, WOW’s underlying FY19 EBIT growth was 2.8 per cent. Shares in Woolworths (ASX:WOW) are 1.7 per cent higher at $37.

Company news

Recce Pharmaceuticals (ASX:RCE) have received a successful grant application, to establish a National Anti-Microbial Resistant Research Hub in Sydney to combat antimicrobial resistance. They are 1 of 5 Industrial Partners in collaboration with 16 University and Public Health Organisations. The Australian Research Council (ARC) has awarded almost $5 million to the Hub. Shares in Recce Pharmaceuticals (ASX:RCE) are 4.6 per cent higher at $0.23.

Splitit (ASX:SPT) shares jumped about 27 per cent today, despite reporting its net loss sank deeper into the red, in the half year to 30 June, falling from a loss of US$1.2 million to US$3.8 million. The buy now pay later (BNPL) company uses shoppers credit cards and approved limits, different to the other BNPL fintech companies, Zip (ASX:Z1P) and Afterpay (ASX:APT). The dive into the red comes as it operating expenses mounted, with the company growing its sales and marketing, PR and social media efforts. Its revenue from continuing operations skyrocketed 193 per cent on a rise in merchant fees. Shares in Splitit (ASX:SPT) are trading 27.5 per cent higher at $0.51 at noon.

IPO

MRI-guided cardiac catheter company, Imricor Medical Systems, Inc. (ASX:IMR) started trading today. It issued shares at $0.83 and started trading on the ASX at $1.30 and is currently trading at $1.35.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Information Technology, adding 2.4 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Consumer Discretionary, has gained the least 0.3 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Austal (ASX:ASB), rising 9.5 per cent to $4.04, followed by shares in Ausdrill (ASX:ASL) and Speedcast International (ASX:SDA).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Regis Resources (ASX:RRL), dropping 3.9 per cent to $5.07, followed by shares in Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG) and Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST).

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has added/ 1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has gained 0.7 per cent and the Shanghai Composite has added 0.6per cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,526 an ounce.
Iron ore price fell 1.2 per cent to US$81.47
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 1.1 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 67.14 US cents.