The Australian share market opened slightly lower despite positive leads from Wall Street. It has managed to regain some ground though and is trading 0.4 per cent higher at noon. Tech stocks are leading the way this morning. The sector is up around 2 per cent.
The S&P/ASX 200 index is 25 points higher at 6,737. On the futures market the SPI is 30 points higher.
Citi rates the ASX (ASX:ASX) as a sell, with a price target of $68. The broker remains concerned about increasing cost pressures affecting the exchange. Shares in the ASX are trading 0.7 per cent higher at $72.33.
Business finance provider and owner of Radio Rentals, Thorn Group (ASX:TGA) has suspended its proposed buy-back after backlash from major shareholders. In October of last year, Thorn’s board announced that it was considering undertaking a buy-back of Thorn shares for an amount potentially in the order of $15 to $25 million. The company was dragged before the Takeovers Panel on concerns the buyback would increase the stake held by major shareholders Somers Group. This follows the company’s AGM last Monday which saw shareholders reject resolutions proposing changes to the board. Shares in Thorn Group (ASX:TGA) are trading flat at 18 cents.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is Tech, adding 1.8 per cent, while the worst performing sector is Real Estate Investment Trusts, shedding 1.4 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Afterpay (ASX:APT), rising 5.6 per cent to $114.91, followed by shares in Cleanaway Waste Management (ASX:CWY) and Bingo Industries (ASX:BIN).
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Charter Hall Group (ASX:CHC), dropping 3.3 per cent to $13.54, followed by shares in Corporate Travel Management (ASX:CHC) and NiB Holdings (ASX:NHF).
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1,914 an ounce.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 2.9 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 77.54 US cents.