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The record run for the Aussie market has continued into the new week with the ASX 200 now extending its winning ways into fifth consecutive session. The index also briefly hit a fresh all-time high of 7092. At lunch, the benchmark index is 13 points or 0.2% higher at 7077. Record highs for local shares follows another record close for Wall St over the weekend.

Gains have been led by improvements for materials and health sectors. Iron ore miners have helped contribute most among mining names with Fortescue Metals (FMG) jumping 3.5% while BHP Group (BHP) is lifting 1.6%. Smaller gold miner, Silver Road Resources (SLR) is 7% higher where it lifted sales guidance for the full year and
lowered cost expectations at its quarterly update. For the health stocks, biotech firm, CSL Ltd (CSL) is 1% higher and Mesoblast (MSB), which deals in stem cell technology, is surging 9.5%.

The consumer discretionary sector is the worst performer so far with online retailer, (KGN) slumping by as much as 20% after releasing a business update. While sales lifted over the first half of FY20, with gross sales lifting by more than 16% and profit also higher by at least 9%, investors were hoping for more and the stocks was heavily sold off. The stock is currently down 16%.

Super Retail Group (SUL) has been another retailer to release a sales update for the first half. The owner of brands such as Rebel Sport, Supercheap Auto, BCF and Macpac reported sales growth of 2.9% and like-for-like sales growth of 1.7%. While Rebel and Supercheap Auto performed best, outdoor brands underperformed, with sales impacted most by the effects of the ongoing drought and recent devastating bushfires. Group first half earnings are expected between $113-115 million and revenue of $1.44 billion.

Health insurer, nib Group (NHF) is the major decliner with a slide of 12.5% after downgrading its FY20 underlying operating profit by ~15% to at least $170 million from previous estimates of at least $200 million on increased claims costs.

With no major economic data due, the Aussie dollar is buying 68.8 US cents. So far, 1.3b units have traded worth $1.9b with 513 stocks higher, 515 weaker and 380 unchanged.

Published by CommSec