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Aussie shares are slightly firmer at lunch on Friday as the ASX 200 attempts to snap its four day losing run, the longest since late October 2020. The benchmark index is 16 points or 0.2% higher at 7480 but has eased from intraday highs where it had lifted as much as 48 points or 0.64%.

The market dipped following the daily NSW COVID-19 update where 644 new COVID cases were announced
while the Greater Sydney lockdown will also be extended until the end of September.

Resources, materials and energy, remains the main underperforming sectors with weaker commodity prices
overnight. Major iron ore miners are holding up fairly well today after the iron ore price slumped 15% to US$130.20/t. BHP Group (BHP) is down 0.7% and has tumbled ~16% this week. Rio Tinto (RIO) is slightly higher, rising 0.6% while Fortescue Metals (FMG) is 1.3% firmer. RIO is down ~10% this week with FNG ~8.5% lower.

Of the other sectors, information technology is also a touch lower while consumer staples and discretionary are leading improvements while property is also advancing close to 1%.

In company news, hearing implant maker Cochlear (COH) is sliding 5.8% on the release of its FY21 profit results even as the company turned a profit of $326.5 million from a $238.2 million loss in the previous period. Underlying profit and revenue both saw improvements as well on a recovery in implant surgeries.

TPG Telecom (TPG) is down 5.3% on first half results out this morning. Net profit slipped 7% to $76 million for the half even as revenue improved 71% to $2.63 billion. TPG is reviewing strategic options for its mobile tower assets following Telstra’s decision to sell a 49% stake in its mobile infrastructure.

Poultry producer, Inghams (ING) is 3.6% higher after FY21 headline net profit more than doubled to $83.3 million. Poultry volumes and revenue rose slightly by 4%.

Sydney Airport (SYD) continues to be impacted by lockdowns with SYD falling to a first half loss of after tax of $97 million and has decided against paying an interim distribution.

The AUD has fallen to 71.3 US cents.

Published by CommSec