Travel stocks rally on Sydney Airport deal: ASX edges 0.1% lower at noon

Market Reports

by Lauren Evans

The Australian sharemarket is edging lower this morning as communication services and technology stocks weigh on the index. At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.1 per cent or 9.3 points lower at 7447.60. The SPI futures are flat.

Across the sectors, 7 out of eleven are in the red. Technology is dragging the lowest, down 1.6 per cent, followed by communication services down 1.4 per cent, then health care down 1.2 per cent. Energy is the best performer, up 1.7 per cent, followed by industrials up 1 per cent. 

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is St Barbara (ASX:SBM), trading 6.1 per cent higher, followed by shares in Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) up 5.4 per cent thanks to a jump in gold prices.

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is medical tech company PolyNovo (ASX:PNV), trading 7.9 per cent lower, followed by shares in Clinuvel Pharmaceuticals (ASX:CUV) down 7.8 per cent following an update to its pharmaceutical development portfolio. 

Online real estate advertiser REA Group (ASX:REA) is down 5.1 per cent, while Domain Holdings (ASX:DHG) is down 6.5 per cent and media giant News Corp (ASX:NWS) is down 1.8 per cent.

PointsBet (ASX:PBH is also down 3.6 per cent, with Aristocrat Leisure (ASX:ALL) down 2.5 per cent after announcing that Gopher Investments is seeking due diligence information from takeover target Playtech. 

Heavyweight miners are also higher, led by BHP (ASX:BHP) up 1.4 per cent following the divestment of its 80 per cent stake in Metsui Coal. Major banks are mixed, with Commonwealth (ASX:CBA) down 0.1 per cent, Westpac (ASX:WBC) up 1 per cent, NAB (ASX:NAB) flat and ANZ (ASX:ANZ) up 0.2 per cent after trading ex-dividend today. 

Energy companies like Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) and Santos (ASX:STO) also gained 2.5 and 2.6 per cent as gas and oil prices rose on renewed supply concerns.

Meanwhile, travel stocks are also on the rise after Sydney Airport agreed to Sydney Aviation Alliance's acquisition offer. Sydney Airport (ASX:SYD) is trading 2.7 per cent higher, while Flight Centre (ASX:FLT) is up 4.5 per cent and Qantas (ASX:QAN) is up 4.3 per cent. 

Local economic news 

The focus this week is our jobs report, the labour force report from the Bureau of Statistics.

We will also see the October NAB business survey and its expected to show an improvement in business confidence and conditions.

Westpac and Melbourne Institute consumer confidence for November is slated. The figures are expected to rise amid the easing of restrictions.

Overseas, inflation readings in the US and in China will be in focus.

Company news

Sydney Airport (ASX:SYD) has agreed to a takeover offer from Sydney Aviation Alliance (SSA) following weeks of negotiations and due diligence.

Health insurer NIB's (ASX: NHF) New Zealand subsidiary, nib NZ has agreed to acquire 100 per cent of shares in Kiwi Insurance for $43 million. 

Mining giant BHP (ASX:BHP) has signed an agreement to divest its 80 per cent interest in BHP Mitsui Coal (BMC), an operated metallurgical coal joint venture in Queensland.

IPO

SiteMinder (ASX:SDR) started trading today. Their shares issued at $5.06, started trading at $6.51 and are currently at $6.80.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Energy, up 1.7 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Information Technology, down 1.6 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is St Barbara (ASX:SBM), trading 6.1 per cent higher at $1.52. It is followed by shares in Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) and Flight Centre Travel Group (ASX:FLT).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is PolyNovo (ASX:PNV), trading 7.9 per cent lower at $1.61. It is followed by shares in Clinuvel Pharmaceuticals (ASX:CUV) and Domain Holdings Australia (ASX:DHG).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1816.63 an ounce.
Iron ore is 7 per cent lower at US$93.14 a ton.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 1.6 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 73.97 US cents.

Investor event

The last event for the year is coming up on Tuesday 16 of November with four companies presenting from financial services, wireless technology to pharmaceutical companies. Make your way to fnn.com.au to register for your free spot.

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