Markets dip on Biden and Trump debate: ASX is now tracking 1% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Rachael Jones

The Australian share market fell at the open and is now tracking 1 per cent lower at noon. President Trump and Joe Biden are currently locked in debate in Ohio, as US markets pulled back. Shares in Corporate Travel Management (ASX:CTD) rose today after they completed their Institutional Entitlement Offer, raising $262 million. Shares in Nine Entertainment Co Holdings (ASX:NEC) are also on the rise. Shares in Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) took a dip.

The S&P/ASX 200 index

The S&P/ASX 200 index is 59 points down at 5,893. On the futures market the SPI is suggesting a fall of 60 points.

Broker moves

UBS rates Downer EDI (ASX:DOW) as an Upgrade to a Buy from a Neutral. The broker sees Downer EDI as a restructuring story that will position the company to deliver free cash flow of at least $300 million. UBS thinks the divestment of mining and laundries operations will be a key catalyst. Target is raised to $5 from $4.50. Shares in Downer EDI (ASX:DOW) are currently 0.1 per cent lower at $4.46.

Company news

Santos (ASX:STO) welcomes the New South Wales Independent Planning Commission’s (IPC) decision to green light the Narrabri Gas Project with conditions. Santos will now work with the Federal Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment as it considers its recommendation to the Minister on EPBC Act approval. The Narrabri Gas Project has the potential to supply enough natural gas to meet up to half of NSW’s natural gas demand where more than one million family homes. Shares in Santos (ASX:STO) are tracking at 2.6 lower at $4.95.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Consumer Staples with the fewest losses losing 0.4 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Energy losing 2.4 per cent.

The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Corporate Travel Management (ASX:CTD) rising 14.2 cent to $17.93, followed by shares in Nine Entertainment Co Holdings (ASX:NEC) and Invocare (ASX:IVC).

The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) dropping 5.5 per cent to $1.03, followed by shares in Pendal Group (ASX:PDL) and Sims (ASX:SGM).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,895 an ounce.
Iron ore price is 1.3 per cent higher at US$117.61.
Iron ore futures are suggesting a rise of 3 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 71.34US cents.