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Tuesday, November 24, 2020

ASX erases last week’s losses

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The Australian sharemarket ended a solid week on a high note, with mining stocks benefiting from a stronger Aussie dollar.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed 0.8 per cent higher at 6190 while the All Ordinaries Index lifted the same amount to 6395.

The market performed quite well after an eventful week, with the US election the obvious highlight, CommSec analyst Tom Piotrowski said.

Futures had tended to be lower, dipping after Donald Trump gave an unedifying press conference alleging widespread vote counting fraud, which took the gloss off upward momentum on the ASX, Mr Piotrowski said.

But gains over the week still amounted to a respectable 4.4 per cent, erasing last week’s 3.8 per cent fall.

Rio Tinto rose 1.58 per cent to $93.40, BHP put on 1.26 per cent to $34.67 and South32 gained 2.4 per cent to $2.13 but Fortescue eased 0.48 per cent to $16.55.

Gold stocks were a standout after the price of the precious metal jumped, with Australia’s biggest producer Newcrest adding 3.5 per cent to $30.72, Northern Star Resources appreciating 7.18 per cent to $16.56 and Ramelius Resources leaping 8.25 per cent to $2.23.

Gold stocks jumped after the price of the precious metal rose. Picture: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg
media_cameraGold stocks jumped after the price of the precious metal rose. Picture: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Media giant News Corp, the publisher of NCA NewsWire, soared 13.6 per cent to $21.63 after posting a solid September quarter profit.

Packaging giant Amcor upgraded its full year earnings forecast, sending its shares more than 4 per cent higher to $16.07.

Gaming group Tabcorp shot up nearly 16 per cent to $14.10 amid rumours private equity could be planning a takeover of its lotteries business, despite the company telling the ASX it was “not aware of, and has not received, any proposal”.

ANZ was up 0.67 per cent to $19.60, Commonwealth Bank inched 0.17 per cent higher to $69.79, National Australia Bank found 1.35 per cent to $19.57 and Westpac lifted 0.4 per cent to $17.77.

In broader economic news, the Reserve Bank’s November statement revealed a more optimistic outlook for growth this year, while the forecast unemployment rate in December has been reduced from 10 per cent to 8 per cent.

The Aussie dollar was fetching 72.60 US cents, 55.29 British pence and 61.41 Euro cents in afternoon trade.

Axi chief global market strategist Stephen Innes said the Aussie dollar had a great week despite an uncertain US election result and a super-dovish RBA, with key reasons including our nation’s excellent progress suppressing COVID-19 and an implied improvement in US-China relations under a Biden presidency.

Originally published as ASX ends week on high note

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