ASX closes 0.85% higher: Rio Tintos half-year profit gets slammed

Market Reports

by Peter Milios

Rio Tinto's (ASX:RIO) half-year profit fell 34% due to weaker commodity prices. The $US5.7 billion underlying result and dividend missed analyst estimates. Australian iron ore dominated the result, but lower prices offset improved volumes.

At the closing bell, the S&P/ASX 200 was 0.85 per cent higher at 7,402.


The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a fall of 12 points.

The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a rise of 1.5 points.

The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a fall of 20.5 points.

The SPI futures are up 66 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was Materials, up 1.83 per cent. The worst-performing sector was REITs, down 0.52 per cent.

The best-performing large cap was Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS), closing 4.55 per cent higher at $5.05. It was followed by shares in Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) and IDP Education (ASX:IEL).

The worst-performing large cap was Seven Group Holdings (ASX:SVW), closing 1.50 per cent lower at $25.61. It was followed by shares in ALS (ASX:ALQ) and Qube Holdings (ASX:QUB).

Asian markets

Japan's Nikkei has lost 0.04 per cent.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng has lost 0.41 per cent.

China's Shanghai Composite has gained 0.61 per cent.

Company news

QX Resources (ASX:QXR) announced that discussions and due diligence have advanced on the Liberty Lithium Brine Project in the California, USA. Commenting on this announcement, CEO, stated, “Ongoing studies, detailed due diligence and a site visit show QXR that the Liberty Lithium Project is truly large scale with repeatable results and a pathway to development.” Shares closed 8.7 per cent higher at 2.5 cents.

Antisense Therapeutics [ASX:ANP | US OTC:ATHJY | FSE:AWY] announced strong results from their positive new DMD Combination Therapy Data in mdx mice. In response, Dr George Tachas, the Director of Drug Discovery and Patents said, “These study results are exciting and suggest the potential for ATL1102 in combination with dystrophin restoration drugs to improve therapeutic outcomes in DMD patients.” Shares closed 1.85 per cent higher at 5.5 cents.

West Wits Mining (ASX:WWI) has updated its DFS for the Witwatersrand Basin Project in Johannesburg, South Africa. In response, Chairman, Michael Quinert said, “With an impressive increase of US$254 million (95%) in Free Cashflow, the project is set to generate US$522 million.” Shares closed 11.1 per cent higher at 2 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,969.00 an ounce.

Iron ore is 2 per cent higher at US$116.75 a tonne.

Iron ore futures are pointing to a 2.17 per cent rise.

Light crude is trading $0.40 lower at US$79.23 a barrel.

One Australian dollar is buying 67.68 US cents.

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