Despite a strong start to trade, which saw the Aussie sharemarket reach highs of 0.7 per cent, the S&P/ASX 200 finished on a flat note, gaining 0.1 per cent or 3 pts, to 7149. The Materials sector did much of the heavy lifting today after the price of iron ore rose by 2.5 per cent on Friday, marking its third straight day of gains. Energy stocks also lifted by 0.3 per cent after an explosion in a South Korean refinery renewed supply concerns. Of the 11 sectors, 4 finished in positive territory.

The best performers today were Codan (CDA) and Imugene (IMU), which rose by 14.2 per cent and 12.5 per cent, respectively. Polynovo (PNV) was the worst performer today after its shares lost 7.6 per cent.

In company news, Codan (CDA) shares climbed 14.5 per cent after it announced that it could expect to hand down a record FY22 profit. CDA says that its DTC and Zetron acquisitions have been “tracking ahead of schedule”, and has also outlined a $41 million operating cash inflow so far in H2.

Shares of Elders (ELD) have advanced 8.9 per cent after it released its half-year results. ELD has posted a 38 per cent increase in its revenues, and a 34 per cent jump in its profits. The agribusiness has also upgraded its earnings (EBIT) guidance and expects it to now be 30 per cent – 40 per cent higher than its FY21 EBIT (previous guidance: 20 per cent – 30 per cent higher).

Incitec Pivot (IPL) has announced its intention to implement a structural separation of its Incitec Pivot Fertilisers and Dyno Nobel businesses into two separately listed companies on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX). The explosives and fertiliser manufacturer also released its interim results, posting a 47.8 per cent increase in its revenues, and a $347.7 million increase in its profits to $384.1 million. IPL shares fell by 3.7 per cent today.

The Star Entertainment Group (SGR) has advised that Mr Ben Heap will assume the role of interim Chairman and Mr Geoff Hogg the position of Acting CEO from 1 June 2022. This follows the resignation of Mr John O’Neill as Executive Chairman on 20 May 2022.

Tomorrow, shares of GQG Partners (GQG) and Amcor (AMC) will trade ex-dividend.

3.9bn shares were traded, worth $6.8bn. 676 stocks finished higher, 764 ended lower, while 402 closed unchanged.

In the week ahead, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand will announce its official cash rate. In the US this Thursday, preliminary GDP data and unemployment claims will be released. Tonight, the US Chicago Federal Reserve national activity index is scheduled.

Originally published by Divik Nigam – (Author), CommSec