The Australian share market rose at the open then after a shaky start rose up to be now tracking 1.4 per cent higher at noon. Ansell (ASX:ANN) shares performed well today after they affirmed their guidance as demand jumps for protective wear. Declines were seen in Virgin Money UK (ASX:VUK) and Abacus Property (ASX:ABP) The best performing sector today currently is Healthcare with materials at the bottom of the chart.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 70 points up at 4,912. On the futures market the SPI is 68 points higher.
UBS rates Alumina (ASX:AWC) as an Upgrade to Neutral from a Sell. The broker envisages short-term headwinds, amid disruptions to secondary demand for aluminium. As China returns to work the risk is that demand for finished goods by the rest of the world will not be sufficient to support sustained production. The broker remains concerned that aluminium in Europe and India is entering a period of extended lock-down and restriction. Target is reduced to $1.50 from $1.90. Shares in Alumina (ASX:AWC) are currently 2.8 per cent higher at $1.49.
Webjet (ASX:WEB) says work on its proposed capital raising is still ongoing. Because the company has not yet reached an outcome, the voluntary suspension of its securities has been extended. At this stage, Webjet expects to be in a position to announce the outcome of the proposed raising within five business days. Shares in Webjet (ASX:WEB) last traded at $3.76.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is Healthcare adding 4.9 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Materials losing 1.3 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Ansell ASX:ANN) rising 16.5 per cent to $27.05, followed by shares in Cochlear (ASX:COH) and Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Virgin Money UK (ASX:VUK) dropping 7.6 per cent to $1.21, followed by shares in Scentre Group (ASX:SCG) and Abacus Property (ASX:ABP).
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,619 an ounce.
Iron ore price is 0.5 per cent down at US$86.36.
Iron ore futures are suggesting a fall of 2.7 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 61.50US cents.