Energy surge overpowers tech slump: Aus shares trading 0.4% higher at noon

Market Reports

by Michael Luu

The Australian sharemarket defied a pessimistic handover from Wall Street to charge ahead at the open, reaching an all-time intraday high of 7401 at 11.26am. Gains by energy overpowered a slump by the tech sector. 

Oil players were doing the heavy lifting, riding on momentum from strengthening oil prices. The surge has energised the energy and utilities sectors, as Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) and Origin Energy (ASX:ORG) were tracking 2.9 per cent and 1.3 per cent higher respectively before lunchtime.

Information technology was the session’s biggest laggard, as Aussie tech stocks corresponded with a stateside retreat by the tech-heavy Nasdaq overnight. Xero (ASX:XRO) and Afterpay (ASX:APT) shed 0.9 and 1.3 per cent respectively by midday.

At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.36 per cent or 26.40 points higher at 7405.90.

The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 16 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Energy, up 1.73 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Information Technology, down 0.92 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Pro Medicus (ASX:PME), trading 2.94 per cent higher at $52.87. It is followed by shares in Soul Pattinson (WH) (ASX:SOL) and Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is OZ Minerals (ASX:OZL), trading 5.13 per cent lower at $24.25. It is followed by shares in Austal (ASX:ASB) and NRW Holdings (ASX:NWH).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1854.52 an ounce.
Iron ore is 0.5 per cent higher at US$221.87 a ton.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 0.74 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 76.94 US cents.  

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