Afterpay rebounds, CBA & travel stocks drag: ASX up 0.2% at noon

Market Reports

by Lauren Evans

The Australian sharemarket is edging higher as tech stocks increase, following a rally on Wall Street over night. At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.2 per cent or 12.6 points higher at 7261 . The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 15 points.

Sectors are mixed. Technology is up 2.4 per cent as the best performer, while financials are dragging the most, down 0.5 per cent. Energy and health care are lifting higher, up 1.3 and 0.9 per cent. Industrials, utilities and consumer staples are edging lower.

The best-performing stock is automotive retailer Eagers Automotive (ASX:APE), trading 4.9 per cent higher. The worst performing stock is investment giant Washington H Soul Pattinson (ASX:SOL), trading 4.4 per cent lower.

On Wall Street, the tech-heavy Nasdaq rebounded from Monday’s sell off, closing 1.3 per cent higher, while the Dow Jones increased by 0.9 per cent. Meanwhile, tech stocks are helping the ASX lift, led by Afterpay (ASX:APT) rebounding from Monday's fall, up 4 per cent. Its rival, Zip Co (ASX:Z1P), is up 1.8 per cent. Energy stocks are higher as oil prices increased over night, with Santos (ASX:STO) and Oil Search (ASX:OSH) up 2.3 and 2.5 per cent. 

In headlines, the a2 Milk Company (ASX:A2M) is down 4.4 per cent, following a class action filed by Slater and Gordon lawyers in the Supreme Court of Victoria. Magellan Financial (ASX:MFG) is down 1.9 per cent following net outflows of $1.5 billion in September.

Major banks are lower, led by Commonwealth (ASX:CBA), down 2.3 per cent, following APRA changes on mortgages in relation to raised loan serviceability rates. Travel stocks are also under pressure with Flight Centre (ASX:FLT) and Webjet (ASX:WEB) down 3.9 and 3.5 per cent.

Local economic news

No economic news scheduled today.

Company news

Law firm Slater and Gordon has filed a class action against the a2 Milk Company (ASX:A2M) on behalf of investors who bought shares over a nine-month period during which the infant formula maker posted four earnings downgrades.

Investment giant Magellan (ASX:MFG) has posted net outflows of $1.5 billion for the September quater, around 1.3 per cent of average funds under management (FUM).

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Information Technology, up 2.4 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Financials, down 0.5 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Eagers Automotive (ASX:APE), trading 4.9 per cent higher at $15.17. It is followed by shares in Janus Henderson Group (ASX:JHG) and Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Soul Pattinson (WH) (ASX:SOL), trading 4.4 per cent lower at $36.52. It is followed by shares in The A2 Milk Company (ASX:A2M) and Flight Centre Travel Group (ASX:FLT).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1758.34 an ounce.
Iron ore is 0.5 per cent lower at US$116.58 a ton.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.85 US cents.

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