ASX still ahead on health, tech gains – 7NEWS

The Australian share market remains in positive territory despite the tech and healthcare sectors softening somewhat after leading early gains.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 42.4 points, or 0.63 per cent, to 6,759.9 points at 1200 AEST on Friday, while the broader All Ordinaries was up 41.8 points, or 0.61 per cent, to 6,867.0 points.

The tech sector had added 1.58 per cent in the first 30 minutes of trade before pulling back to 0.86 per cent, while early healthcare gains also collectively slipped

Healthcare stocks were still 0.86 per cent ahead at noon, with pharma giant CSL up 0.71 per cent, Nanosonics ahead 1.50 per cent, Sonic Healthcare 1.32 per cent higher, Cochlear up 1.14 per cent and ResMed up 0.31 per cent.

For the tech stocks, Afterpay was still up 1.59 per cent and Xero 2.01 per cent, but Appen gave up more than one per cent to only stay ahead by 0.36 per cent.

Every sector of the ASX remained in positive territory, with energy stocks recording the smallest rise and lower iron ore prices weighing on the materials sector

Mining giant BHP was up 0.15 per cent to $37.735, but Rio Tinto dropped 0.66 per cent to $92.43 and Fortescue Metals was down 2.10 per cent to $8.85.

The big four banks were higher, with ANZ up 0.32 per cent to $27.92, Commonwealth Bank up 0.09 per cent to $82.25, NAB up 0.55 per cent to $29.48 and Westpac up 0.27 per cent to $29.65.

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Bendigo and Adelaide Bank was up 0.52 per cent, Bank of Queensland was up 0.62 per cent and Macquarie Group was up 0.81 per cent.

Premier Investments streaked further ahead, up 16.61 per cent after the retail owner posted a 27.7 per cent increase in full-year profit.

Pushpay was up 0.63 per cent as the app payment developer for churches, schools and education providers raised its guidance.

Seven West Media shed 2.41 per cent on news long-time head of sport Saul Shtein will depart the network in chief executive James Warburton’s first major move since taking the reins in August.

Coles shares were down 0.27 per cent after it reignited the supermarket war with rival Woolworths by committing to a new range of bulk-size value packs and lower prices for more than 300 products.

It was a mixed session on Wall Street overnight, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average finishing down 0.19 per cent, the S&P 500 closing flat and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite up 0.07 per cent.

The Bank of England and the Swiss National Bank left interest rates on hold overnight while the Norwegian central bank raised its policy rate by 25 basis points.

The Aussie dollar is buying 67.84 US cents, up from 67.81 US cents on Thursday.


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