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The Aussie market has galloped to a fast start, rebounding from yesterday’s losses. The ASX 200 is up 37 points or 0.65% to 5855.8 towards lunch. This follows a mixed lead from Wall St with gains for the Dow but a 0.4% slide for the tech heavy Nasdaq.
Gains on the local market are generally across the board with the resource sectors leading the field. Energy producers are advancing as US sanctions are officially reenforced against Iranian oil exports. Although the US has granted several temporary waivers for eight countries. Major producers such as Woodside (WPL) and Santos (STO) are both lifting ~1.5%.
Miners are improving despite a mixed night for base metals on the London Metals Exchange. Metals prices were generally lower expect for Iron ore, which improved 2.3%, helping lift BHP Billiton (BHP) by 0.8% and Rio Tinto (RIO) by 1.6%. Fortescue Metals (FMG) is a touch weaker.
Financials are also supporting the market with the big four banks all higher between 0.8% to 1.2%. National Banks (NAB) is leading the major lenders higher. Commonwealth Bank (CBA) is higher after confirming it has increased its stake in online property exchange business PEXA to 16%. Link Group (LNK) has also increased its holding as part of a consortium with Morgan Stanley Infrastructure and CBA.
Meanwhile, ResMed (RMD) is softer by 1.3% after announcing the acquisition for a US based healthcare software business, MatrixCare for $1 billion. Corporate Travel Management (CTD) is in its second trading halt within a week following another report from investment firmVGI Partners (VG1) into the company.
While most eyes will be on the big race at 3pm today, the RBA will meet and release its interest rate decision just 30 mins beforehand with most economists and analysts expecting interest rates to remain on hold at 1.5%. The Aussie Dollar has strengthened against the greenback and buys 72.14 US cents with the US midterm elections and US Fed Reserve interest rate decision still to come this week.
Volumes have been lighter today with 0.8B units traded worth $1.1B. 498 stocks are higher, 400 weaker and 324 unchanged.
Published by James Tao, CommSec