Tech leads as ASX closes 1.02% higher

Market Reports

by Peter Milios

At the closing bell, the S&P/ASX 200 was 1.02 per cent higher at 7,122.30, driven by a 1.7 per cent rise in the tech sector.

Afterpay-owner Block (ASX:SQ2) rose by 2.4 per cent, while software player IRESS gained 5.7 per cent.

The Financials sector also improved by 1.5 per cent, with NAB (ASX:NAB) leading the banks by adding 2.3 per cent. Telstra (ASX:TLS) shares reached their highest level since 2017 at $4.24 per share before closing at $4.20. However, the gold miners suffered losses as the gold price retreated, with Gold Road (ASX:GOR) losing 3.9 per cent and Capricorn Metals (ASX:CMM) down 3.4 per cent.


The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a fall of 2 points.
The S&P 500 futures are flat.
The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a fall of 11 points.
The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 66 points when the market next opens.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was Information Technology, up 1.7 per cent. The worst-performing sector was REITs, down 0.21 per cent.

The best-performing large cap was Infratil (ASX:IFT), closing 3.49 per cent higher at $8.61. It was followed by shares in Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) and Worley (ASX:WOR).

The worst-performing large cap was Endeavour Group (ASX:EDV), closing 1.75 per cent lower at $6.73. It was followed by shares in James Hardie Industries plc (ASX:JHX) and Lynas Rare Earths (ASX:LYC).

Asian markets

Japan's Nikkei has lost 0.77 per cent.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng has lost 0.50 per cent.
China's Shanghai Composite has gained 1.79 per cent.

Company news

RareX (ASX:REE) announced a 500 per cent increase from the 2021 Mineral Resource Estimate, driven by a highly successful 2022 drilling campaign, establishing Cummins Range as the second largest undeveloped Australian rare earths deposit. RareX Managing Director, Jeremy Robinson, said, ““This is an exceptional result which positions RareX at the forefront of the critical minerals sector in Australia. I would like to thank our hard-working geological and project teams for their exceptional efforts over the past few years to get this point. The future for RareX is looking very exciting.” Shares closed 21.3 per cent higher at 5.7 cents.

And in more rare earths related news, West Cobar Metals (ASX:WC1) has announced more high-grade rare earth clay mineralisation from their drilling at their Salazar Project in WA. In response to the positive news, Non-Executive Chairman, Rob Klug, commented, “These results still represent less than 60 per cent of the total number of drill holes assayed and we look forward to receiving the remaining holes during April.” Shares closed 17.7 per cent higher at 10 cents.

Strategic Elements (ASX:SOR) announced that Energy InkTM technology is on track to exceed the power density of solar technology due to technical breakthroughs in the process of converting moisture into electrical energy. Managing Director Charles Murphy said, “. Success in the short-term development pathway outlined will provide a strong, early indication of the technology’s potential to scale up and power certain larger-scale systems.” Shares closed 15.9 per cent higher at 12.8 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,960.60 an ounce.
Iron ore is 1.1 per cent higher at US$125.10 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 0.9 per cent rise.
Light crude is trading $0.18 lower at US$72.79 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 66.91 US cents.

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