Australian building approvals in September fell by 4.6%, surprising analysts who had anticipated a 1.3% increase. Additionally, private sector house credit dropped by the same percentage, as reported by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.26 per cent higher at 6,798.10.
The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 26 points.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector is REITs, up 1.04 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Utilities, down 0.34 per cent.
The best-performing large cap is Amcor plc (ASX:AMC), trading 2.64 per cent higher at $14.205. It is followed by shares in Qantas Airways (ASX:QAN) and ResMed (ASX:RMD).
The worst-performing large cap is Yancoal Australia (ASX:YAL), trading 4.35 per cent lower at $4.62. It is followed by shares in Allkem (ASX:AKE) and Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS).
NOVONIX (NASDAQ:NVX, ASX:NVX) has finalised its US$100 million grant award from the U.S. Department of Energy to expand domestic production of high-performance, synthetic graphite anode materials at its Riverside facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. In response, Dr. Chris Burns, CEO of NOVONIX, “the ability to deploy $100 million towards Riverside’s recently increased production targets will have an immediate beneficial impact on the Company’s plans and the battery materials supply chain here in North America.” Shares are trading 17.8 per cent higher at 80 cents.
Wildcat Resources (ASX:WC8) announced that Mineral Resource has increased its stake in the Company, now owning 19.85% of Wildcat’s total issued shares. In response, Wildcat Chairman Jeff Elliott stated: “The acquisition by Mineral Resources of this substantial shareholding provides independent validation of the potential of our Tabba Tabba Lithium Project and the ability to transform it into a Tier-1 lithium asset. Shares are trading 13.48 per cent higher at 80 cents.
Ioneer (ASX:INR, NASDAQ:IONR) and EcoPro Innovation signed a Research and Development Memorandum of Understanding. Ioneer Executive Chairman, James Calaway, said, “the ultimate goal of EcoPro and Ioneer is to increase the supply of refined lithium materials for the U.S. EV supply chain and create hundreds of good-paying jobs in Nevada and beyond.” Shares are trading 7.14 per cent higher at 15 cents.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1990.70 an ounce.
Iron ore is 0.2 per cent higher at US$123.15 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 1.67 per cent rise.
One Australian dollar is buying 63.27 US cents.