— Finance

ASX rises for third straight day: Pilbara Minerals, Xero gain but TPG plunges

The ASX surged higher for the third day in a row, capping off its best weekly performance in seven weeks, but TPG plunged after its founder quit.

The Australian share market lifted for the third straight day and has put in its best weekly performance in seven weeks, with nearly every sector rising on Friday. The S&P/ASX200 finished 0.49 percent higher at 6824.2, while the All Ordinaries Index lifted 0.58 percent to 7063.1.

CommSec analyst Steve Daghlian said it was the best trading week since early February. “And we’re still on track to lift for a sixth consecutive month as long we can avoid a heavy tumble in the early part of next week,” Mr. Daghlian said.

“We had a positive lead from Wall Street last night, which is always helpful, and in recent days, the bond market has also been relatively calm.”

The gains were led by materials and IT. Lithium producer Pilbara Minerals surged 9.52 percent to $1.03, and iron ore miner Fortescue jumped 3.8 percent to $20.15.

Rio Tinto put on 2.16 percent to $110.33 and BHP added 0.42 per cent to $45.07. Accounting software provider Xero was a strong performer in the tech sector, advancing 4.12 percent to $127.20.

Telstra announced on Friday it had decided to delist from NZX Ltd at the close of business on June 16 and then move to an exclusive listing on the ASX as part of its bigger plan to simplify the company, with the telecommunications giant saying its Kiwi shareholders had been reducing over time.

Shares in Telstra appreciated 2.4 percent to $3.41. TPG Telecom founder and chairman David Teoh resigned, ending his near 30-year reign as the figurehead of the immediate $13bn company.

TPG shares plunged 6.7 percent to $6.41. The healthcare sector lagged, with biotech heavyweight CSL easing 0.88 percent to $267.46. Sleep devises company ResMed backtracked 1.39 percent to $24.88, dermal regenerations solutions outfit Polynovo gave up 5.32 percent to $2.85, and hearing device pioneer Cochlear softened 0.54 percent to $212.43.

Mr. Daghlian noted a2 Milk fell below $8 for the first time in more than three years before clawing back to $8.04, down 1.35 percent. “It is its ninth straight day of losses, it has only improved once in 18 trading sessions as well, and it certainly has been one of those stocks that have done it quite tough during the pandemic, with border closures to China, in particular, being a weight.”

In the energy sector, Oil Search rose 1.69 percent to $4.22, Santos firmed 1.13 percent to $7.16, Woodside Petroleum found 1.07 percent to $24.54, and Origin was up 0.64 percent at $4.73.

“Not a bad performance considering that the oil price fell more than 4 percent last night and has declined around 9 percent over the week as well,” Mr. Daghlian said.

“This has been partly due to concerns about the COVID situation in Europe at the moment.” However, the oil price boosted during the week on the back of a vast cargo ship getting stuck in the Suez Canal, a primary shipping channel.

After denying reports, shares in the embattled financial services group AMP resumed trading after a pause and gained 0.75 percent to $1.34. Chief executive Francesco De Ferrari was poised to resign.

However, it did go on to say the board and Mr. De Ferrari were “constructively discussing the future strategy and leadership of the group, post the completion of AMP’s portfolio review”.

Gemma Broadhurst
Gemma Broadhurst is a 23-year-old computing student who enjoys extreme ironing, hockey and duck herding. She is kind and entertaining, but can also be very standoffish and a bit evil.She is an Australian Christian. She is currently at college. studying computing. She is allergic to milk. She has a severe phobia of chickens

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