The local market dropped at the open, the S&P/ASX 200 Index is down 0.4 per cent or 30 points lower at 6,851 points. SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 0.5 per cent. Shares in the Macquarie Group (ASX:MQG) are doing well today after they reported improved trading conditions across the group in the December quarter. Shares in Challenger (ASX:CGF) took a dip.
Local economic news
According to NAB’s Monthly Business Survey, business confidence rose 5 points in January to 10 points, while business conditions fell back to 7 points following a strong December.
Credit Suisse rates Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) as a Downgrade to a Neutral from an Outperform. The broker expects lessons learned over the past 24 months including a period of significant lithium oversupply leading to low utilisation rates and prices to translate into more controlled future expansion. Even so, Pilbara continues to be the broker's preferred pick. Shares in Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) are 0.5 per cent higher to $1.01.
Buddy Technologies (ASX:BUD), a leader in IoT and cloud-based solutions for making spaces smarter, reports positive adjusted EBITDA on sales between $24 million to $28 million for the six months to December 31, 2020. Results for H2 FY2021 are anticipated to more than double the (unaudited) revenues for the prior corresponding period which was $10.8 million. Shares in Buddy Technologies (ASX:BUD) are down 3.45 per cent to $0.06.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is Information Technology gaining 0.5 per cent while the sector trailing behind is utilities dropping 2 per cent.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Macquarie Group (ASX:MQG) rising 6.9 per cent to $143.50, followed by shares in IGO (ASX:IGO) and Worley (ASX:WOR)
The worst performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Challenger (ASX:CGF) dropping 13.43 per cent to $6.25, followed by shares in Credit Corp Group (ASX:CCP) and Perenti Global (ASX:PRN).
Gold is trading at US$1,839 an ounce.
Iron ore is 2.2 per cent higher at $160.50
Futures are suggesting a rise of 2.5 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 77.18 US.