Macquarie downgrades Magellan (ASX:MFG): Aus shares 0.5% higher at noon

Market Reports

by Katrina Bullock

The Australian share market rose at the open. It has maintained momentum into the mid-session and is now tracking 0.5 per cent higher at noon. Every sector has made ground, except for Healthcare and Energy. Costa Group Holdings (ASX:CGC) and Jumbo Interactive (ASX:JIN) have been standout stocks this morning. Shares in Nufarm (ASX:NUF) however have taken a dive after the company issued a press release, ahead of its results, which outlined the difficult market conditions it has experienced during its half year, which is due to end on 31 January.

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 36 points up at 7,078. On the futures market the SPI is 28 points higher.

Broker moves

Macquarie has downgraded Magellan Financial Group (ASX:MFG) from a neutral to an underperform, with a 12-month price target of $55.00. The broker acknowledges the company is a stand-out performer but cannot justify the current 25 times multiple. Shares in Magellan Financial Group (ASX:MFG) are trading 0.4 per cent higher at $63.75.

Company news

Food & staples wholesaler and retailer, Metcash (ASX:MTS), has appointed Annette Welsh as the new CEO of the Hardware pillar, effective from 1 May 2020. This follows Mark Laidlaw’s decision to retire after 10 years in the role. Annette Welsh has over 30 years experience across retail, wholesale and logistics, and has been with the company since 2010. She has previously held senior management positions with Mark and Spencer and IBM. Shares in Metcash (ASX:MTS) are trading 0.2 per cent lower at $2.62.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Materials, adding 1.1 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Energy losing 0.3 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Costa Group Holdings (ASX:CGC) rising around 5 per cent to $2.71, followed by shares in Jumbo Interactive (ASX:JIN) and Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Nufarm (ASX:NUF), dropping 11 per cent to $5.42, followed by shares in Dominos Pizza Enterprises (ASX:DMP) and Blackmores (ASX:BKL).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,551 an ounce.
Iron ore price is 0.1 per cent lower at US$96.36.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 0.5 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 68.97US cents.

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