The Australian share market opened higher following positive leads from Wall Street and is now tracking 0.2 per cent higher at noon. Nufarm (ASX:NUF) shares are on the rise in the first two hours of trade. This comes after they announced they will sell their South American crop protection and seed treatment operations in Brazil, Argentina, Colombia and Chile to a Japanese company for $1.18 billion. The markets upward movement may also be due to optimism concerning the RBA announcement. The market is expecting the cash rate to be cut by 25 basis points to 0.75 per cent. The Industrials sector is leading the way and the Energy sector trailing behind.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 15 points up at 6,703. On the futures market the SPI is 1 point down.
Local economic news
The number of dwellings approved fell 3.9 per cent in August 2019, in trend terms, and has fallen for 21 months, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today. The seasonally adjusted estimate for total dwellings approved fell 1.1 per cent in August, driven by a 2.4 per cent decrease in private houses.
Harvey Norman Holdings (ASX:HVN) and certain of its controlled entities have completed the agreements for the sale of The Byron, Byron Bay Resort. The purchasers under the Sale Contract were GAG Byron on Byron Property and GAG Byron on Byron Business Company. The Sale Contract was disclosed to the ASX on 9th August 2019. Completion took place on Monday 30th September 2019. Shares in Harvey Norman Holdings (ASX:HVN) are trading 1.8 per cent higher at noon at $4.61.
Mader (ASX:MAD) started trading today. They provide heavy mechanical equipment support, service and maintenance. It issued shares at $1 and started trading on the ASX at $1.20 and is currently trading at $1.14.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is Industrials, adding 1.3 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Energy, shedding 0.9 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Nufarm (ASX:NUF), rising 10.5 per cent to $6.23, followed by shares in Ooh!Media (ASX:OML) and Domain Holdings (ASX:DHG).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Resolute Mining (ASX:RSG), dropping 2.8 per cent to $1.38, followed by shares in Cooper Energy (ASX:COE) and St Barbara (ASX:SBM).
Japan’s Nikkei has added 0.8 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and the Shanghai Composite are closed today due to National Day.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,469 an ounce.
Iron ore price rose 2.7 per cent to US$93.38
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 2.5 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 67.39 US cents.