SYDNEY, AAP – Australia’s share market has made a tame start to a shortened trading week after the 10-year government bond yield briefly surpassed three per cent.
The market was marginally higher and mixed as the bond market showed investors expecting higher rates sooner amid annual inflation of 3.5 per cent.
The 10-year government bond yield rose to three per cent earlier on Monday and was at 2.99 per cent at 1200 AEST.
Investment analysts have tipped attractive yields will soon lead investors to exit the share market for low risk bonds.
The higher yields follow the Reserve Bank last week dropping its patient language on raising rates.
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The US Federal Reserve also revealed some policymakers want steeper rate hikes after a quarter of a per cent rise in March.
Investors will this week be monitoring the US first-quarter earnings season, while Russia’s ongoing war on Ukraine continues to complicate commodity prices.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 10.2 points, or 0.14 per cent, to 7488.2.
The index was about 150 points from its record high of August.
The All Ordinaries index was higher by 6.2 points, or 0.08 per cent, to 7778.2.
Financial shares were best and higher by less than one per cent.
Technology and consumer discretionaries fared worst, although both lost less than one per cent.
In company news, lithium miner Lake Resources was surging after a deal to supply Ford for its electric cars.
Lake will provide about 25,000 tonnes of lithium per year from its Kachi mining project in Argentina.
Lake was up almost 10 per cent to $2.04.
Steel-maker BlueScope is buying a US metal painter for $671 million.
Coil Coatings is the second largest metal painter in the US and mainly serves commercial and industrial customers.
BlueScope was up less than one per cent to $20.61.
Miners IGO and Western Areas have agreed the former will raise its offer for all shares to $1.24 billion.
IGO initially offered $3.36 per share but the revised proposal offers $3.87 per share.
The Western Areas board has recommended investors accept the offer.
IGO was up three per cent to $14.19.
Western Areas was up five per cent to $3.85.
The mining giants were all lower. Fortescue dropped two per cent to $21.30. Rio Tinto lost less than one per cent to $118.18. BHP was little changed at $51.90.
Engineering and building group Hochtief has gained 92 per cent of CIMIC through an off-market takeover.
Hochtief has gained the right to progress to compulsory acquisition and has extended its offer to CIMIC investors.
CIMIC was little changed at $22.00.
Fertility specialist Virtus Health has received a larger offer from CapVest Partners which betters the bid of BGH Capital.
Virtus has encouraged investors to accept CapVest’s offer of $8.15 per share over its rival’s $8 per share offer.
Virtus was up less than one per cent to $8.20.
The Australian dollar was buying 74.28 US cents at 1200 AEST, lower from 74.81 US cents at Friday’s close.