The Aussie market has started Friday’s session in rather unconvincing fashion. The ASX 200 spiked on the open to hit an early intraday high with a gain of 38 points or 0.65% but has since faded and is now 10 points softer at lunch. The index was down as much as 17 points at its lows.
These moves follow a softer session on Wall Street overnight where the big tech names were again among the major decliners in dragging the NASDAQ lower by 1.3%.
Even with a weaker US tech showing on US markets, the local tech sector is rebounding from yesterday’s heavy falls. Afterpay (APT) is bouncing 1.5% while Xero (XRO) is up 1.4%. It is one of only three sectors to lift after the first few hours of trade, with the materials and energy sectors also advancing.
The major miners are lifting despite another drop in iron ore prices overnight. BHP Group (BHP) and Rio Tinto (RIO) are advancing 1.3% and 1.7% respectively while Fortescue Metals (FMG) is flat.
Smaller miners like lithium producers Galaxy Resources (GXY) is rallying 7.7% and Pilbara Minerals (PLS) is 4.8% higher. Defensive gold stocks are also lifting. Saracen Minerals (SAR) is up 3% while Northern Star (NST) is 1.5% firmer.
Sectors underperforming most include the industrials, real estate, consumer staples and healthcare. Both Scentre Group (SCG) and Stockland (SGP) are down more than 2%. Meanwhile, the larger cap banks, CSL Ltd (CSL) and toll road operator Transurban (TCL) are also main drags on the market.
Even with Friday’s softer moves, the ASX 200 is still on track for to snap four straight weeks of declines, with its best weekly improvement since the week ending 14 August.
The Aussie dollar is firmer against the greenback and is back above 73 US cents having yo-yoed in the past 24 hours following the surprise beat in August jobs numbers but also downward pressure from falling commodity prices. The AUD is now buying 73.16 US cents.
So far, 2.6b units have been traded worth $3.8b with 643 stocks higher, 492 lower and 381 unchanged.
Published by CommSec