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ASX 0.32% higher at noon: Fortescue rallies on Twiggy’s visit to US

Mining giant Fortescue (ASX:FMG), led by executive chairman Andrew Forrest, saw a nearly 4% increase in shares on the ASX 200 index as he promoted his green hydrogen initiative in the US and inspected Austal’s shipyards. The Forrests’ private investment vehicle, Tattarang, holds a 19% stake in Austal, which recently entered a trading halt, attracting interest from North American suitors due to its US Navy contracts.

At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.32 per cent higher at 7,329.80.

The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 18 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Materials, up 2.99 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Information Technology, down 0.99 per cent.

The best-performing large cap is Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG), trading 4.96 per cent higher at $23.29. It is followed by shares in Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) and Rio Tinto Group (ASX:RIO).

The worst-performing large cap is Qantas Airways (ASX:QAN), trading 2.02 per cent lower at $6.555. It is followed by shares in Xero (ASX:XRO) and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corporation (ASX:FPH).

Asian markets

Hong Kong stocks saw a strong rebound and the Hang Seng index climbed 3% on Tuesday after China’s Politburo pledged to “adjust and optimize policies in a timely manner” for its ailing property sector.

Beijing’s top decision making body also vowed to “elevate stable employment to a strategic goal,” along with other pledges to boost consumption and tackle debt risks.

This comes after disappointing economic data last week prompted renewed calls for policy support to bolster growth.

Mainland Chinese stocks were also all higher, with the Shenzhen Component climbing almost 2% and the Shanghai Composite up by 1.18%

Other Asian markets were also mostly up. South Korea’s Kospi traded close to the flatline, while the Kosdaq was 1% higher. This comes after the country saw a 0.9% year-on-year growth in its second quarter gross domestic product, according to advance estimates.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 fell 0.18%, while the Topix rose 0.13%.

Company news

Talon Energy (ASX:TPD) announced today that its JV Partner & Operator TMK Energy has advised that initial gas from the Lucky Fox-1 well has flowed to surface & flared at its Mongolian Gurvantes CSG Project.Talon’s Managing Director & CEO, Colby Hauser said “ We are pleased to announce the positive results from the extended production test and the promising early signs from the performance of the three pilot wells & we look forward to updating the market further. Shares are trading 2.86 per cent higher at 18 cents.

Noble Helium (ASX:NHE) has provided an update on the targets for the upcoming drilling campaign at its North Rukwa Project in Tanzania, which continues to proceed as planned for spud in Q3 2023. Noble Helium CEO & Co Founder Justyn Wood commented “ While there is always risk in exploration, thanks to a comprehensive de-risking campaign, new data and our upward revised internal pre drill volume estimates present a compelling argument to focus on Mbelele in our maiden drilling campaign. A discovery at the Mbebele 1 well will be immediately appraised 4km away at the Mbelele 2 well, to support potential early commercialisation that would fund further drilling” The company is expected to spud Mbelele 1 in just two months. Shares are trading flat at 25.5 cents.

Tamboran Resources (ASX:TBN) has announced that it has awarded John Wood Group the contract to undertake the Concept Select Engineering phase for the proposed NTLNG development at the Middle Arm Sustainable Development Precinct in Darwin. Tamboran Managing Director & CEO Joel Riddle said “ The commencement of this engineering phase with Wood signals Tamboran’s intent to design and develop a best in class, low emissions facility to process low reservoir CO2 Beetaloo gas for global LNG customers” Shares are trading 5.88 per cent lower at 16 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$2001.40 an ounce.

Iron ore is 0.7 per cent lower at US$114.50 a tonne.

Iron ore futures are pointing to a 1.3 per cent rise.

One Australian dollar is buying 67.54 US cents.