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The Aussie market is trying to claw back some of yesterday’s heavy losses in the early part of Tuesday’s session with the ASX 200 lifting by as much as 35 points. The index is fading from those early highs to be trading mostly flat towards lunch.
The early positive move followed a late rally on Wall Street overnight where the Dow Jones index erased a 507 point intraday loss to close higher by 34 points. All major US indices ended higher.
Improvements for materials and healthcare are helping lift the market most. The major miners are climbing higher despite a slide in metals prices in overnight trade. Fortescue Metals (FMG) is up 0.8% with BHP Billiton (BHP) lifting 0.5%. Biotech firm, CSL Ltd (CSL) is 1.5% higher after drifting 3.95% lower yesterday. ResMed (RMD) is also advancing 3.9%. Telcos are providing some support with TPG Telecom (TPM) jumping 7.5%.
After suffering heavy losses yesterday, the major banks are having a mixed morning. Macquarie Group (MQG) is in positive territory, while the remaining big four are a touch weaker.
Insurers are weaker led by a 4% decline for QBE Insurance (QBE). The insurer has announced the sales agreements of its operations in Puerto Rico, Indonesia and the Philippines while also looking to cut around $130 million in costs by 2021. QBE will also look to better protect itself against catastrophes with a new reinsurance program.
Consumer facing stocks are among the main underperformers on the market. Supermarkets Woolworths (WOW) and Coles Group (COL) are slipping 2% and 2.6% respectively. Travel agency, Flight Centre (FLT) is softer by 1.3%. Bucking the trend is poultry producer Inghams (ING) which is 4.9% higher on a broker upgrade.
A raft of local economic releases ranging from weekly consumer confidence, monthly business conditions and confidence have been released but has not moved the Aussie dollar much as the local currency buys 71.9 US cents.
So far, 0.8B units have been traded worth $1.7B with 445 stocks higher, 433 lower and 341 unchanged.
Published by James Tao, CommSec