The Australian share market shot up at the open and is now tracking 0.1 per cent higher at noon.The materials sector is doing well today with shares in St Barbara (ASX:SBM) Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG) and Gold Road Resources (ASX:GOR) all seeing a rise. Shares in New Hope Corporation (ASX:NHC) and Mesoblast (ASX:MSB) meanwhile took a dip.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 7 points up at 6,022. On the futures market the SPI is 2 points higher.
Credit Suisse rate BHP (ASX:BHP) as a Downgrade to a Neutral from an Outperform. They believe the recent appreciation in the share price means the risk/reward is balanced.The broker still regards the balance sheet as robust and envisages little risk to dividends. However, yields are considered no longer attractive enough to serve as a trigger to push the stock higher. Target is reduced to $37 from $39. Shares in the BHP Group (ASX:BHP) are trading 1.1 per cent higher at $36.03.
Iberdrola's take-over offer for renewables company Infigen (ASX:IFN) has been given approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board. Infigen's board unanimously recommended shareholders accept the off market takeover offer from Iberdrola at the end of last week. The wind farm owner was subject to a rival bid from Philippine investment company UAC Energy, which was increased to 86 cent per security at the end of last month. Shares in Infigen Energy (ASX:IFN) are trading flat at $0.92.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector is Materials, gaining 1.4 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Utilities, losing at 1.5 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is St Barbara (ASX:SBM) rising 9.4 per cent to $3.60, followed by shares in Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG) and Gold Road Resources (ASX:GOR).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is New Hope Corporation (ASX:NHC) dropping 6.2 per cent to $1.37, followed by shares in Mesoblast (ASX:MSB) and Southern Cross Media Group (ASX:SXL).
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,785 an ounce.
The iron ore price is 0.6 per cent higher at US$101.24.
Its futures are suggesting a rise of 2.9 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 69.72 US cents.