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The Aussie sharemarket is off to a fast start on Friday with the ASX 200 rallying to a new 15-month high. At lunch the benchmark index is 80 points or 1.1% higher at 7,175. At one stage it was up as much as 88 points or 1.25% at 7,183 (best level since 20 Feb last year). The strong moves for local shares come despite a mixed lead from Wall Street.

Improvements have been rather broad and led by the heavyweights. Materials are leading gains with financials, energy, industrials and consumer staples also providing support. Only the IT and utilities sectors are trading in negative territory.

Individually, BHP Group (BHP) is adding the most to the ASX 200 with a gain of 3.3%, lifting the index by 14 points alone. Two of the big four banks are also contributing with Commonwealth Bank (CBA) lifting back around $100 per share, rising 1% while Westpac (WBC) is 1.4% higher.

Other notable movers include, Inghams Group (ING). The poultry producer is lifting 9% after upgrading its FY21 earnings (EBITDA) and net profit (NPAT) guidance. Its forecast was supported by its operational performance year-to-date and overall improved trading conditions.

Immugene (IMU) continues its recent rise, adding another 7% today. The stock is up 355% so far in 2021 having rocketed by 215% in 2020. It was announced this morning that its CEO and Managing Director will be increasing her shareholdings by another $623,000, having increased her holdings by over $1 million earlier in the week.

Tabcorp (TAH) has received yet another takeover proposal for its Wagering & Media business unit. This time from fellow ASX-listed Betmakers Technology (BET) which is offering a total consideration of $4 billion, broken up into $1 billion in cash and $3 billion in shares. The TAH board is yet to form a view on the proposal. TAH shares are 2.5% higher but BET is tumbling 13%.

Domain Holdings (DHG) is 3.9% firmer as it addressed media speculation it is part of a consortium that is looking to buy a 10% stake in the company that owns PEXA, which allows digital property settlements.

The Aussie dollar is a touch softer buying 77.47 US cents.

Published by CommSec