ASX climbs, Crown jumps 9%, Miners mixed: ASX up 0.2% at noon

Market Reports

by Lauren Evans

The Australian sharemarket is pushing forward this morning as technology stocks and casino giants lift. At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.2 per cent or 16.8 points higher at 7457.80. The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 1 point.

Across the sectors, 7 out of eleven are in the green. Technology is the highest, up 1.1 per cent following Nasdaq’s strong performance. Consumer discretionary is next, up 0.8 per cent, then materials, up 0.4 per cent.  Meanwhile, utilities are the worst performer, down 0.6 per cent, then consumer staples, down 0.5 per cent. 

The best-performing stock is lithium miner Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS), trading 6.7 per cent higher following its announcement regarding a joint venture with Posco to develop a lithium hydroxide monohydrate facility in South Korea. The worst-performing stock is Reliance Worldwide (ASX:RWC), trading 2.5 per cent lower after reporting on its September quarter & EZ-FLO International acquisition.

Heavyweight miners are mixed as iron ore prices trade lower. Fortescue Metals  (ASX:FMG) is down 1.5 per cent, while BHP (ASX:BHP) is up 0.7 per cent. Meanwhile Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) is down 7.1 per cent after it warned about the fall of lithium shipments over the September quarter due to lockdown restrictions and excess rainfall.

Crown Resorts (ASX:CWN) is up 9 per cent after the regulator said it can keep its casino license on several conditions, keep an eye out for a story to be released this afternoon. Star Entertainment (ASX:SGR) joined the rally, trading 5.8 per cent higher. Tech stocks surged, with Afterpay (ASX:APT) up 3.1 per cent and Novonix (ASX:NVX) up 6.1 per cent. Meanwhile, WiseTech Global (ASX:WTC) fell 2.4 per cent, following the appointment of two new executive directors. Major banks are higher, led by NAB (ASX:NAB) up 0.5 per cent.

In headlines, energy giant Oil Search (ASX:OSH) is up 0.4 per cent following its quarterly results, which outlined a 12 per cent increase in revenue. Santos (ASX:STO) is also up 0.4 per cent as the possible merger remains. 

Local economic news 

The weekly consumer confidence from ANZ and Roy-Morgan was released this morning. ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence was virtually unchanged at 106.8, down 0.2 points on the weekend. Consumer confidence remains below the 2021 weekly average of 108.2 but is now 7.1 points higher than the same week a year ago, October 24/25, 2020 (99.7).

Consumer confidence this week was up slightly in Victoria, and Melbourne, as the city began to re-open from its sixth lockdown, however, was down slightly in NSW and Sydney nearly two weeks after that city re-opened earlier in October. This week’s small decrease was caused by fewer people expecting to be ‘better off’ financially this time next year which was slightly offset by more Australians saying now is a ‘good time to buy’ major household items.

Company news 

Energy giant Oil Search (ASX:OSH) recorded revenue of US$409 million ($546 million) for the September quarter, up 12 per cent from the prior quarter while the company also tightened its full year production guidance.

Global plumbing and heating specialist Reliance Worldwide (ASX:RWC) reported on its September quarter, while at the same time, announced the acquisition to EZ-FLO International.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Information Technology, up 1.1 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Utilities, down 0.6 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS), trading 6.7 per cent higher at $2.23. It is followed by shares in Star Entertainment Group (ASX:SGR) and Orocobre (ASX:ORE).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Reliance Worldwide (ASX:RWC), trading 2.5 per cent lower at $5.05. It is followed by shares in WiseTech Global (ASX:WTC) and South32 (ASX:S32).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1806.10 an ounce.
Iron ore is 0.4 per cent lower at US$119.08 a ton.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a fall of 0.5 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 74.96 US cents.

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