JB Hi-Fi jumps 7%, Redbubble tumbles: ASX up 0.3% at noon

Market Reports

by Lauren Evans

The Aussie sharemarket is in positive territory despite a choppy morning, supported by a rise in the technology and material sectors. The communication services and consumer discretionary sectors are also helping the local bourse stay in front.

Among the materials sector, lithium stocks have rallied with Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR) advancing 4.8 per cent and Allken (ASX:AKE) jumping 4.2 per cent.

Appen (ASX:APX) is pushing the tech sector higher up 4.2 per cent, followed by Novonix (ASX:NVX) trading 2.9 per cent higher.

In the consumer discretionary space, two companies have released news with very different reactions. JB Hi-Fi (ASX:JBH) jumped out of the blocks, rising 7 per cent to $49.88 after reporting on its half-year results, which outlines a boost in online sales while profit still expected to fall. Meanwhile, Redbubble (ASX:RBL) is weighing on the sector after flagging to investors that revenue growth is expected to be lower. Shares are tumbling 26 per cent to $2.21.

Elsewhere, Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) is trading 0.1 per cent higher after reporting a fall in iron ore production last year, while heavyweight miners Fortescue (ASX:FMG) and BHP (ASX:BHP) are up 1.2 and 1.6 per cent respectively.

Onto gold stocks, Northern Star (ASX:NST) has added 0.8 per cent, Newcrest Mining (ASX:NCM) is trading 0.4 per cent higher and Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) is flat.

Major banks are lower except Macquarie (ASX:MQG) up 0.04 per cent. Westpac (ASX:WBC) is down 0.3 per cent, National Australia Bank (ASX:NAB) and Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA) are both down 0.2 per cent and ANZ Bank (ASX:ANZ) is trading 0.1 per cent lower.

Energy stocks are mixed with Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) trading flat, Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) up 1.4 per cent and Santos (ASX:STO) down 0.4 per cent.

In other company news, petroleum giant Ampol (ASX:ALD) said their Lytton Refinery experienced improved refiner margins in the final quarter of 2021 as supply and demand fundamentals improved. Shares are up 1.5 per cent to $31.01.

At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.3 per cent or 22 points higher at 7,439. The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 23 points.

Local economic news

ANZ and Roy Morgan released their weekly consumer confidence figures. Consumer confidence decreased during the second week of January, down 8.1 points to 97.9 and is now at its lowest since October 2020 during Victoria’s second wave of Covid-19. In addition, consumer confidence is now 10.8 points below the same week a year ago, January 16/17, 2021 (108.7).

The statement said the fall is likely related to several factors including the surging ‘Omicron variant’ of Covid-19 which has also led to shortages in PCR tests, Rapid Antigen tests, vaccine dose availability for children aged 5-11 (which began last week), and supply chain issues with shortages of key goods in supermarkets and other retailers.

Consumer confidence this week was down in all States, except in South Australia and is now below the neutral level of 100 in all states.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Materials, 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 Imugene (ASX:IMU), trading 7 per cent higher at $0.38. It is followed by shares in JB Hi-Fi (ASX:JBH) and Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 is Virgin Money UK (ASX:VUK), trading 2.7 per cent lower at $3.58. It is followed by shares in Nufarm (ASX:NUF) and Zip Co (ASX:Z1P).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1820.52 an ounce.
Iron ore is 2.2 per cent lower at US$124.00 a ton.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 0.4 per cent.
One Australian dollar is buying 72.20 US cents.

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